We saw Rogue One.
Swistle: “I wish they had cut out about thirty minutes of the ‘[*zooms her hands like fighter planes*] PEW PEW-PEW PEW-PEW-PEW PEW PEW PEW-PEW PEW-PEW PEW PEW-PEW-PEW PEW PEW-PEW!!!!!’ and used that time to explain who people were and what was going on.”
Paul: “I wish they had cut out the thirty minutes where people were talking or having feelings or looking meaningfully at each other, and filled it with more PEW-PEW-PEW-PEW-PEW.”
I don’t want to nitpick about an otherwise perfectly acceptable person with many indisputably fine qualities, but see my tagline because yes I DO want to and here I go: Paul puts things into temporarily-empty spaces. Like for example, I can still get worked up about him “organizing the pantry” a couple of years ago. He went striding down there as if he thought only his manly super-intelligence could solve this little domestic issue, and into every space where we were currently low on flour or tomato sauce or cereal or whatever, he crammed items from other shelves. He made our pantry into Tetris: every item was packed beautifully for maximum conservation of space—and minimum ability to remove that item or put away any further groceries.
And when I said, “Wait, but I can’t put the groceries away because there’s no room for them, and we can’t get to the cereal or crackers because they’re behind all the canned stuff,” he was pissed and huffy. Pissed and huffy is my least-favorite spousal state after “So Sick He Will Probably Die of this Head Cold that Is Definitely Flu Because Listen to How Much He Is Groaning and Sighing; Can I Feel His Forehead and See if He Has a Fever?”—and also Pissed and Huffy is MY specialty and he shouldn’t be copying me. …I am not sure firstborns should marry each other.
Bright side: the pantry DID get organized, because I had to move every single thing back again.
Not every space-filling episode is as dramatic and disastrous as The Pantry Incident. Sometimes it is a matter of him helpfully moving a stack of bowls over to an empty place in the cupboard—a place where, when the dishwasher is unloaded, it will turn out the dessert plates normally go: that place was not just sitting empty because we were too silly to use it for something. Sometimes it is putting a plate into the dishwasher so that it blocks water to the inside of a bowl. Sometimes it is taking a pad of paper on which I’ve written an important reminder, and adding it to the mail stack on the counter where I won’t see it. Sometimes it is taking a bunch of things out of the upstairs freezer and moving them to the downstairs freezer—right into the space where I will then not be able to put away that week’s groceries, which include replacements for the things I thought we were out of because they were not in the upstairs freezer. But always, ALWAYS there is that lethal combination of “HE’LL take care of this issue!” + MAKING THINGS WAY WAY WORSE AND CREATING A LOT OF WORK + pissed and huffy that “making things worse and creating a lot of work” is not praised and appreciated. Stick to what you do WELL, Paul. LEARN FROM EXPERIENCE, Paul. It has been OVER TWENTY YEARS OF SWISTLE BEING QUITE VOCAL ABOUT YOU NOT REARRANGING HER THINGS, Paul.
Comments suggesting I should be grateful that he WANTS to assume I don’t know what I’m doing and fix it for me will be answered with the delivery of Paul to your house to rearrange your pantry and stand there proudly expecting you to be grateful for it. I will infect him with a head cold first, so that afterward he will lie on your couch groaning and shivering until you ask him if he’s okay.