Wednesday, April 21, 2021

"Gal, mute!"

Last night, during movie group, I became the Zoomer you hate most. Yes, I was the one who carried on a personal conversation without muting myself. I honestly thought I had, but instead of shutting off my mic, I'd turned off my camera.

So everyone heard me yelling at Henry. "I can't talk to you this week! I told you this last night! I sent it in an email and texted you this morning!" I told him I was sick from my coronavirus vaccination,* that I have a broken tooth and I'm working under deadline. My movie group heard it all. It was mortifying.

But I snapped because Henry is so obnoxious at times. I told him over the weekend that while I love him very much, I just can't talk to him this week. Our conversations are always rambling affairs and they leave me unsettled. I know it's not his fault, it's his brain injury, and allowances but be made. But it's something I just can't cope with right now, when I have so much work to do. I take time off to eat, and to attend my movie group or toss off a post like this one, but other than that, I've got to work because I've got a deadline. I lost a day to illness this week and next week I'm getting my tooth fixed.** My deadlines don't move because of these things.

So what does he do? He calls me, drunk, on Monday. To complain about losing his job at the library. "You didn't lose your job," I corrected. "You retired. You quit. Let's not talk about a job you didn't want anymore. Let's talk about your future." 

"But you don't understand! Miguel wanted me to ..."

"Miguel is not your boss anymore. Miguel doesn't matter now. What are you going to do going forward?"

He pivoted to his "misery" over his second coronavirus vaccination, insisting it was as bad as the virus.* Now I had the virus, and I reminded him that his short-term 100ยบ fever was nothing like what I went through. "I had diarrhea, too!" He insisted. And then told me how the only thing that made him feel better was the box wine he and Reg picked up after a long car ride to the discount liquor store.

"Were you wearing a diaper?" I asked, annoyed.


"You took a long car ride when you had diarrhea."

"When you have been married as long as Reg and I have, these things don't matter."

Drivel. He was spouting drunken drivel, and I was busy. So I repeated Monday night what I told him over the weekend: "I am too busy to talk to you now. But it doesn't mean I don't love you. I have an unmovable work deadline and a broken tooth."

"Yes. I understand. I love you."

I reminded him of this in a Tuesday morning email and a text. I know sometimes he doesn't check his email, but he has to be holding his phone in his hand to make a call, so a text should get through to him. Should.

He called anyway, saying, "I am worried about you! We have not spoken in so long!" I snapped. I admit I was angry. He didn't even remember speaking to me less than 24 hours before! What's the point?  

Without his job at the library, he's going to be unmoored. I guess I can look forward to this for the rest of our lives.

I suppose I can't help that, but I can remember to hit "mute" on Zoom.


*I had a bad 24 hours -- headache, chills and muscle aches. But you know what? It was nowhere near as bad as the six weeks I was sick with covid.

**At least I hope I am. The endodontist's office still hasn't called me back!