I’ll admit it, I have faults. Many of them; scores of ’em, likely. Idiosyncrasies and oddities, too.
I have one in particular that I’d always assumed everyone had: the desire — no, the necessity — that everything a person moved had to be returned to the exact place and position it had owned prior to being moved. The salt shaker, for example. If you take it out of the cupboard, put it back when you’re done with it. In the Exact Same Place, in the Exact Same Position. ESP².
Well, it’s taken me the better part of five decades to realize and accept (and oh, accepting this was a dear struggle!) that not everyone shares this law of living, this ESP². Most, in fact, treat this statute as so much pshaw. And there are millions of these Pshawselytes!
My wife is one of them. The Bos Lady lives a fairly carefree and happy life, never fretting over the innate wonder of ESP². When she uses something at Chez Bos, she puts it back somewhere in the vicinity that she had found it.
I find this maddening. Monstrous even.
Where I carefully put the ketchup bottle back in the fridge where I found it, top right shelf against the inner wall (front label facing forward), the Bos Lady casually plunks it down in a spot she sees first. If that’s horizontal on top of the juice jug, so be it. Fridge door closes; out of sight and out of mind.
For years these affronts to ESP² caused me much angst and anxiety with recurring episodes of nervous twitching, rapid blinking, and shortness of breath. When she’d witness these episodes, the Bos Lady would give me the once-over glance, roll her eyes and walk away.
But I am better now. I’ve learned to live among the millions of Pshawselytes out there, and I still love the Pshawselytes in my family, including the Bos Lady of course. I still get the nervous tics on occasion but generally speaking the reactions are under control.
To keep things level, I remain under an aggressive treatment program: consistent, timely applications of ESP² in heavy, concentrated doses. It’s almost ESP² on steroids, applied through bursts of focused activity organizing some part of our home to give everything its proper and precise place and station.
I recently put ESP² magic to work in our kitchen pantry, taking everything out and then putting it all back precisely and perfectly.
It was a beautiful thing.