Monday, August 21, 2006

The Spouse Complainer

The catalog is extensive. He puts it on display like a coffee-table book. Guests will be subjected to it, and you can't beat the price. Included in the index, alphabetically of course, is every flaw, every mistake, every single thing that's wrong with her. With DSM diagnostic references attached.

Her childhood led up to this. Her parents were involved. It was years in the making, way over budget, and intended, all along, to ruin his life. Until the day he met her, everything was roses, and things were still okay, for awhile. And then the real her.

She's the kind of person, he will tell you, when she leaves the room, who thinks it's all about her. She doesn't know anything about boundaries. Saying things to other people that are really none of their business. Telling them his secrets. Saying bad things about him behind his back.

Not only that, she can't even cook a decent pot of rice.

She has no empathy.

She's lacking something essentially human.

You wonder how she did on the Voight-Kampff test, but you don't say anything. You wonder if it's rude to squirm.

She's not fit to be a mother, or a wife, or a friend, or a teacher, or an employee, or a cowherd, well, maybe a cowherd.

Have you heard her try to sing?

Yes dear, he says, as she asks for help in the kitchen. She's useless in there, he informs you as he departs. He is the one who has to do everything. You look at your own spouse and mouth the words, can we leave now?

You wonder if it's rude to scream.

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