Previous Challenge Entry (Level 2 – Intermediate)
Topic: Snap (09/04/08)
TITLE: A Snap Touchdown
By Carole Robishaw
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“The house is on fire.”
“If you want to go to your sister’s, that’s fine,” he turned back to the television.
“Did you hear me?”
“Of course I did, your going to visit Sally.”
“Really! Because the last thing I said was that the house was on fire.”
“What? Look, I said go, why do we have to discuss this now? This is a big game.”
“Because if I go, I’m not coming back.”
“Yeah, I’ll see you on Monday, when you get back.”
I stomped off and finished packing. I’m so tired of his not listening. I don’t really exist around here unless dinner isn’t on time. That’s it; I’m out of here. I snapped the latch on the last case.
“Can I get a little help carrying my suitcases to the car?”
“Yeah, sure, they’re at halftime, I was grabbing a snack, but I can carry your overnight bag,” he mumbled through a mouthful of chips. “Uh, why so many suitcases for a weekend?”
“I’m tired of being a fixture around here.” I won’t lose my temper, remain rational, I will, I can. “I need you to listen to me, to talk to me. I have problems, too. I listen to your problems about work all the time, but you never have time to listen to me. You never listen to anything I say. I’ve put up with this for too long, I’m tired of it. I can’t take any more. I want out.”
“What are you talking about? I always listen to you. You said you wanted to go to your sister’s, some kind of get-together, or something. I said go, so what’s the big deal?”
“It is a big deal! I’m as important as your clients, why can’t you give me just five minutes once in a while. You think you know me so well that you don’t have to listen, so you make these snap decisions about what I’m saying and you never really listen. You run in the door, turn on the television and you start telling me about how your day went. You get upset if I’m not interested and commenting, but do you ever ask about mine? And if you do, perchance, do you actually listen to what I’m saying? I’ve been talking about this weekend for a month now; you said you wanted to do this, too. But now you aren’t interested in anything except that game.”
“Whoa, wait a minute, this is the weekend you’ve been yakking at me about? How am I supposed to understand what your problem is if you don’t talk to me?”
“I did! I stood right there and asked you if you were planning to pack, I asked if you wanted me to pack for you, I even said the house was on fire, and you just said, go ahead and go, it was fine with you.” I can do this, I can. Maintain control, don’t scream at him, you’ll sound like some crazy shrill.
“You’re crazy,” he snapped. “You never said any such thing, I would have heard you. I heard you say you were going to pack, that you were going to Sally’s, you never said anything else.”
“THEY SCORED, A SNAP TOUCHDOWN. THEY DID IT, THEY TOOK THE LEAD!” the announcer on the television screamed. “THEY’VE JUST SNAPPED THEIR LOSING STREAK!”
Rob turned back to the television, “did you hear that. Oh man, and I missed it. The big play of the whole game!” Turning, he saw the look on my face. “Uh, look, I, uh, can we talk about this? Okay, so maybe I do tune you out sometimes, but not always, I mean, uh, I remember we planned this weekend. We, uh, planned a big night on the town, just the four of us, like old times, the kids gone, out till dawn if we’re able to stay awake that long, right? I got the weekends mixed up, okay. It’s not big deal. I’ll make it up to you.”
Total cold silence, except for the television blaring away.
Rob paled, blinked, and snapped up the remote. Click! The announcer faded way.
“I love you. Can we start this conversation over again? Please? Don’t make any snap decisions about leaving, let’s work this out, please.” His soulful brown eyes pleaded.
My will snapped. I fell into his arms. “I love you, too.”
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