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Previous Challenge Entry (Level 3 – Advanced)
Topic: Irritated (11/08/12)

TITLE: Wait, Is That a Turkey?
By Wilma Schlegel


Wait - is that a turkey? She went in for coffee, she comes out thirty-five minutes later - with a turkey? Seriously, did she really think now was a good time to get one? I sat in that car so long waiting for her to get that ‘coffee’ that my legs cramped up - I had to get out. I’ve got a meeting in the morning - it’s eleven o’clock at night - and she finally comes out - with our Thanksgiving turkey?

“Where do you want these groceries?” she’s asking me.

Where do I want them? I didn’t want them at all. The coffee, I wanted the coffee. We ran out this morning. Actually I left the last little bit for her. Wouldn’t you think a normal person would get out during the day and pick more up? What did she do all day? Seriously, I don’t know what goes on in that head of hers. And then she gets mad at me and says I treat her like ‘she doesn’t have a brain’. Am I on ‘Candid Camera’ or something?

Well, she’s not going to get me now. Nope, I’m not going to complain at all. Uh uh, it ain’t gonna happen.

“They can go right in the back,” I tell her. I walk to the back of the Jeep with her. She’s opening it even as I’ve spoken.

Yeah, look what’s still inside - that desk she wanted from the auction. Yep. Who got that for her? I did.

She places the bags gingerly around its sideways legs. The desk is on its backside, the only way it would fit in, its legs sticking out ... like a Thanksgiving turkey.

She’s grabbing the netting handle of the bird and hefting it in as I arrange the other bags. Gotta hand it to her, though. Years ago she’d have swung that bird right into the back and hit anything in the way. Now, she’s very controlled, always controlled, almost too controlled.

She doesn’t say much to me. She used to talk a lot and smile - and laugh. Sometimes she’d cry, too - not a lot, but sometimes. Now, all we seem to do is get on each other’s nerves and just let the irritation fester under the surface. I never know what she’s thinking, sometimes I don’t want to know.

I miss the way it used to be - even the crying (I still hate that, but it was something real at least). The emotional outbursts, the making eye contact, the reading each other’s thoughts and especially the laughing - oh how I miss the laughing.

Is there any way back from this place of perpetual annoyance? What should I say right now? Is there anything to say? I don’t want my head bitten off, I just want my wife back

Oh no, before I’ve taken the time to think about it, some rogue words are falling out of my mouth. “Hey, good idea getting that turkey now.”

Did I say that out loud?!

Her eyes fix on mine. I feel some of what Esther from the Bible must have felt when she entered the king’s throne room without being summoned. Will she welcome my comment or will she knock me out of the ring with one sharp jab from that tongue?

I know she’s got a brain in that head, I can see it working, calculating, in those eyes of hers. Oh no, here it comes!

No wait, do I detect just the slightest tilt of her head? That cute little movement she used to make way back, back before....

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This article has been read 411 times
Member Comments
Member Date
Shann Hall-LochmannVanBennekom 11/15/12
I totally enjoyed this sojourn into the MC's brain. As I read I glanced about--sure that I could hear his wheels grinding. You nailed the topic and also did a grand job of showing how two people can slowly drift apart, not even aware that they had been drifting until the chasm between them is so wide. Nice bit of writing on this thought-provoking piece.
Joanne Sher 11/18/12
What a lesson delightfully and poignantly told. Enjoyed this read very much.
Bea Edwards 11/24/12
Whew another convicting, lovingly told tale. Bittersweet and to the bottom of the heart of many relationships at times.
Theresa Santy 11/24/12
Loved this endearing, moving piece. Congratulations on you well-deserved placing!
Loren T. Lowery11/26/12
Well written and maybe a bit convicting at the same time. I really liked the convincing way you presented your article with the dialogue and story line itself. Congratulations on your EC, Wilma!