Men and women are different, there’s no doubt about that. Although we are equal in God’s eyes we are definitely not created equally. There’s something that happens early in the womb–testosterone floods the male brain–and that changes him forever. From then on we think differently, act differently…and collect things differently.*
Vicki: We have too many mugs. We need to get rid of some.
Du: I like all those mugs. I want to display them all.
Vicki: (biting tongue and lip) Uh, honey, we don’t even use all those mugs, why would you want to display them?
Du: Because they’re all cool. They all have special meaning.
Vicki: Fine, you can display them at work.
Du: (shaking head and smiling) I want to display them here, at home, on a mug tree.
Vicki: (not knowing whether to laugh or cry) Whhhaaaa? Wha? What? A mug tree? In this house? Never.
Du: Why not? It will be cool.
Vicki: It will be a cool way for Ashlyn to break all of the mugs and one more cool thing that I have to dust.
Du: I want a mug tree.
You can probably guess that the conversation hasn’t gone beyond this. And let me clarify what this mug tree would look like. It wouldn’t be one of those beech woody things that six or eight mugs would hang on. Du has in mind this floor to ceiling peg pole where mugs galore would reside. Like a truck stop souvenir shop. I truly hope Du is joking because we’ve been striving to get rid of clutter. Not display the clutter in a countrified-hazardous-where the crap would we put it-new way. Are you being defiant and hard headed? Funny? Please? We only have so much room in the house and we’ve pretty much filled it. And by Du’s own desire (in which I totally agree) we’re getting rid of a lot of the things that sat on the horizontal surfaces around the house. So, what’s up with wanting to take mugs out of the cabinet, nicely hidden and put away, and displaying them in broad daylight where cats, kids and Mommy’s hips will inevitably destroy most of them. Wait a minute. He’s on to something…
After throwing away my cub scout and boy scout uniforms, my high school letterman’s jacket, our shot glasses from all over Europe, I finally tell Vicki, whhooooaaaa, partner. I say that those types of things have memories for me and it helps me remember people and events in my life. Vicki says pictures are what can help us recall things. This after she has stopped doing hardcopy scrapbooks and is “possibly” going to start digital scrapbooking at some point (read this as the next time I’m deployed). OK, so somehow we’ve gone from having a few trinkets around the house on shelves or in boxes that will occasionally remind us of past momentous events in our life to a couple of online pictures? I told Vicki that as much as I like pictures, I love the reminders from touristy shops (things I can actually see and hold).
Since I’m a big coffee drinker, I have picked up a few coffee mugs recently. I got one at the Space Shuttle Atlantis launch (the only one I’ve ever been to and one of the last shuttle launches ever) that says “Failure is not an Option”. Now how cool is that around the office? Same with the Truman library I visited recently. The mug from there says, “If you can’t stand the heat, then get out of the kitchen.” Each Friday afternoon, I take my coffee cup home to wash and bring a new coffee cup in the following Monday. I rotate which one it is (my Georgia Tech mug that Reagan/Ashlyn bought me, my mugs from previous jobs, etc) It’s not about the mug tree. It’s that Vicki wants me to stop getting mugs altogether. I’m glad that pictures are enough for her. For me, I need a memento, so what’s wrong with a mug? Come on ladies, show me a little love on this one — Vicki will not hold it against you
There you have it. Our first S/He Said. We’ve been wanting to do something like this for a while but couldn’t agree what “issue” should be first. What do we do? Keep the mugs in the cabinet (where they belong)? Or hang them on a mug tree (for the visual person who likes memories)? Your answers do not obligate us to follow a certain course of action. This, in no way, is a democratic blog.