At the age of 75, I’m having some hearing “issues.” It could be hereditary, since I recall my Dad not hearing well in his golden years – but I’ve long suspected that could have been a ruse so he could get away with ignoring my mother…or whoever. Nobody I’ve known with hearing aids has done anything but complain about them, no matter what price range they were in. We’d be sitting at the dinner table with my mother-in-law when hers would start emitting unearthly sounds and she’d pull them out to adjust them – not a particularly appetizing habit. Hence, they are not currently on my Wish List. This is in spite of all the wonderful offers I get by mail. By whatever manner I got on all these mailing lists, it’s obvious my age has put me in the target market for hearing aid sales. It’s apparently the same with funeral homes – but I digress.
Anyway…marital harmony in our household was enhanced by the purchase of one of those sound systems for watching TV. With headphones on, I can actually hear enough dialog to get the punch line without Gwynne complaining that the windows are rattling and the dogs taking refuge in another room.
Recently, it was a bit shocking to discover that Gwynne could recount the entire phone conversation I’d had with my cohort in Montana – while I was in the office and she was working in the garden outside. I, on the other hand, hadn’t seen or heard her working out there. It’s like she has super powers, so I really need to be careful what I say.
I’m early to bed and early to rise. I may not be all that healthy or wealthy, but I’m going to claim to be wise. We don’t have the same hours of operation, and Gwynne’s schedule is about 3 hours behind mine. With her seemingly freakish hearing abilities, I try for stealth when getting out of bed. Not to be indelicate, but since my age also necessitates numerous night-time bathroom trips, “practice makes perfect” and I can grip the doorways to negotiate that far in the dark. However, going any further in the dark makes falling on my face inevitable.
We were at the supermarket check out line when I added to the pile moving down the belt a really cool little LED flashlight. These work so much better than those big old-fashioned kind – which must be why they use them all the time on CSI. I had been checking them out online, so was all proud of myself for finding it a great price. Unfortunately, I got “The Look” from Gwynne… meaning an explanation for buying such a thing was going to be required.
On leaving the bathroom in the mornings, I had to turn on the hall lights to get to the office, where I turned on the ceiling light to get to the desk to turn on the desk lamp, then go to the kitchen and turn on the ceiling light to see well enough to turn on the coffeemaker…and then have to re-trace my steps to switch off the kitchen and office and hall lights before settling myself at the computer to wait for coffee to be ready.
Obviously, my new flashlight was going to be an immense energy -saver, both physical and electric. Besides, it was really cool and I wanted it – totally. Once on board with the concept, Gwynne suggested we devise a Velcro device to mount it on the brim of a baseball cap so I could whip that on my head in the morning and have both hands free. That could be fun, but it ain’t gonna to happen.