Mornin' Rage

A Conversation at the Bathroom Door

"Mornin' Rage. Will you be long?"
"It's Rachel, for God's sake."
"I know, I know," I mumble.
"You mumbling again?"
"I have a very sharp hearing."
"Yes, darling. And a sharp tongue." Maybe I shouldn't have said that. But I can't always hold back.
"Nothing, but, have you synchronized your Palm with mine?"
"Bloody technology."
"It's important. For our family agenda." I am glad I can't see her face now.
"Are you afraid I might miss our date at the gym, or the dinner with your boss?"
"I do have a brain, you know!"
"Yes, darling. Of course. But you don't like to be talked to in the mornings."
"Then don't."

This isn't going too well.
"I think, it's nice to have everything planned out clearly."
"Oh, that is why you are so chaotic."
"Only yesterday I stumbled over this new electronic calculator of yours."
Calculator? "Calculator?"
"The one that lured you in the shop: Buy me, your wife won't notice."
"It's not a calculator. It's the Techno Tongue 2000 XP."
"You can translate 200'000 words into seven languages." Women.
"But you only speak the one…"
"That might change now." How is she to know.
"My mother always warned me about your obsessive nature with emotionless gadgets."
"Your mother doesn't know a toaster from a Grill Pro Extreme."
"Keep my mother out of it."

Breathe, keep calm. "What about your palm now?"
"Your dates?"
"Maybe we should set our dates for marital sex on the Palm as well. At least I might stand a chance of being touched for a change." Sarcasm. Not a good sign.
"And by the way, you hero of technology, what's this new toilet in here?"
"It's great, isn't it?" I try a little enthusiasm.
"The old one was perfectly fine to me."
"Fine, yes. But this toilet, the Cleanmaster, it's not just a toilet. It washes and dries your behind for you."
"Quite capable of doing that by myself, thank you."
"Stop interrupting, Rage. That's not nearly all. When you sit down, you will be personally greeted."
"I guess it will know it's me because I sit down." When we were still dating, I used to love her sarcasm. But, frankly, it has become tiring after a couple of months.
"Rachel, you know perfectly well: I have been sitting down since our marriage."
"More or less…"
"The toilet reacts to your personal weight."
"This thing knows my weight? How charming."
I am not giving up on this. "It plays radio, has an internet connection with a retractable flat screen and can change color according to your moods."
"What moods? Peter, what are you implying?" Oh-oh, anger's back. Maybe I should just leave for the office early. But impending repercussions later form a threat not to be underestimated.
"Not implying a thing. You feel stressed out? Hit the button and wham - it's a soothing green."
"Just what I needed."
"Thought so…" Luckily, she overhears this one.
"What on Earth did this monster of a toilet cost?"
The question I feared the most. "OK, it wasn't exactly a bargain."
"How much?"
"Ehhhm, 2000 dollars."
I'm in trouble now.
"And why not buy something I might enjoy, like a whirlpool?"
"Have I mentioned the automatic cleaning fountain?"
There is only one argument left. I throw through the bathroom door, "But the Cleanmaster is self-cleaning!"
"Self-cleaning? Why didn't you say so right from the beginning?"
"Not that spectacular."
"No, but useful for a change."
"What about your Palm now?"
"Forget the bloody Palm and be glad, that I am willing to tolerate the new bathroom toy."
It's a start.
"Just leave me alone now. I need my morning silence."
"Yes, Rachel."
"And I assume, I will have to read that manual the size of a book before I can use this Cleanmaster. Thank God for my strong bladder."

© Carol Ernst (July 2006)

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