I Am Woman

If it comes in a cardboard box from Home Depot, I usually maintain a hands-off policy.

If it comes in a cardboard box from Home Depot, I usually maintain a hands-off policy. The contents of those boxes tend to need assembly, and that requires either strength or manual dexterity, neither of which I have. And if I thought I could physically manage the project, I might still be defeated by pictograph instructions that I couldn’t interpret.

It’s rare that I accompany Andrew on a trip to Home Depot in the first place. I walk in with a sense of wonderment at how big and therefore promising it is, but within moments am disillusioned by how little of it entices me. One weekend, as a gesture of goodwill, I volunteered to go with him. I brought a book. When he wandered into the outdoor garden supply area, I retired to the heated room that sells tropical plants and lawn furniture. I chose a patio set I liked, settled in a chair and opened my book. I got a few envious looks. Apparently I’m not the only spouse who finds Home Depot exhausting.

In a classic Home Depot kind of way, the trip resulted in an eclectic mix of purchases; some kind of organic lawn care stuff, a spreader for said stuff, a bulb for the garage flood light, and two toilet seats. I had been concerned that we hadn’t measured the existing seats, but learned that there are only two types: round and elongated. Who knew?

When we got home, we dropped the toilet seats in the upstairs hallway. Andrew’s priority, however, was the lawn, so he spent the rest of the afternoon happily using his new spreader. The next day he went to work, the toilet seats still in the hall. Each time I passed those boxes I thought, what if I didn’t have Andrew? By mid-afternoon I’d made up my mind; I was going to replace the toilet seats myself.

I started by removing an existing seat from its toilet. I was amazed at how easy it turned out to be. Two big plastic screws held it in place, that was all there was to it. I figured that out without written instructions or pictures. And wonder of wonders, the new ones worked the same way! In a matter of minutes I was finished. I was inordinately proud of myself. I had tackled a cardboard box from Home Depot and prevailed.

I am woman, hear me roar! There is nothing I can’t do. I have proven once again that a woman needs a man like a fish needs a bicycle. Hang on, I hear a drip. The sink in the upstairs bathroom seems to be leaking. It probably needs to have something tightened, or a washer replaced. I’ll ask Andrew to take care of it. Meanwhile, I’m going to go buy my fish a bicycle.

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