Monday, September 19, 2011

The suckhole that soaked my pants & exposed my weakness

Sunday offered a burst of unexpectedly gorgeous weather, which seemed like a good excuse for a late-afternoon hike.

I set out with a friend along a scenic trail beside the Deschutes River. We’d gone a couple miles when I suggested stopping to enjoy the scenery from a giant rock overhanging the river. The sun was starting to dim, so I pulled off my prescription sunglasses and set them in my lap.

I know myself well enough to realize the likelihood I’d forget the glasses was the same as the likelihood I’d make inappropriate jokes about the giant suckhole formed by the water swirling beneath our rock.

It didn’t take long for both things to occur. With a soft kerplunk, my glasses tumbled off my lap and into the water.

“Uh-oh.” I peered over the ledge and into the swirling eddy of chilly whitewater sloshing over jagged rocks. “My glasses.”

My companion was on his feet in an instant, clambering down the rock ledge on an optical rescue mission. Since it didn’t seem wise to let him drown while I stood on the ledge and made more suckhole jokes, I clambered down the rocks to assist.

The river was icy and swift, but I rolled up the legs on my capris and stuck a leg in to test the depth. It came just above my knees, so I lowered myself into the chilly water to peer beneath the rock.

Two seconds later, I was in it up to my crotch. I yelped as the glacier-fed river hit my lady bits, but since I was already soaked, I made a good show of pretending to look for the glasses I knew I’d never find.

Then I crawled out of the water and added a few wet panty jokes to my growing repertoire of suckhole humor.

Still fretful about the glasses, my companion stayed below, braving the frigid water and potential nutsack frostbite in pursuit of the drowned spectacles.

“It’s OK, really,” I called down from the ledge. “This I why I buy cheap glasses. I basically bank on losing four or five pairs a year.”

It’s sad, but true. In my younger years, I thought I could change my habits. I focused hard on keeping track of my glasses. I bought fancy cases to keep them in, and even tried splurging on nicer pairs in hopes of tricking myself into being more responsible.

It never worked.

These days, I accept my weakness. I know I’m not going to change, so I’ve learned to buy cheap prescription glasses and not get too attached.

It’s the same with writing sometimes. Try as I may to be a responsible plotter who plans out her stories before spewing words onto the page, I know I’ll never manage to do it. I compensate by surrounding myself with critique partners and beta readers who are skilled at digging me out of my plot holes.

I know I’ll never feel like writing a blog post after a big dinner and a glass or twelve two of good wine, so I’ve learned to write earlier in the evening and reward myself afterward with the food and drink.

Do you have weaknesses you’ve learned to work around as you’ve aged? Got any good coping strategies or ways you’ve overcome your own weaknesses? Please share!

I have to make an appointment with the optometrist. Here’s hoping he enjoys a good suckhole joke.

16 comments :

Andrea Mack said...

This is one of the best "losing my glasses" stories that I've heard in while.

Nicole Basaraba said...

I agree with Andrea. I love when someone can make jokes when something like this happens. Now I wish was there to hear all the suckhole jokes.

Matthew MacNish said...

It's a good thing to know your faults and except them for what they are. I do the same thing with sunglasses, although I never seem to lose them. They always break somehow.

Sarah W said...

i get up early in the morning to take care of e-mail and webcomics and feeds and stuff, so I'll be able to devote time to a blog post at lunch and my WIP after the kids go to bed.

And I have to start writing at 9:30pm each night, or I'll still be YouTubing by bedtime.

Such is my life.

lynnrush said...

Suckhole jokes...NICE. This was funny. Sorry about the glasses, though, that stinks.

Linda G. said...

My brother once had a pair of sunglasses stolen off his head by a monkey while sitting by the pool at an island resort. He never got his back, either.

Malin said...

I'm very bad at dealing with my weaknesses in a good way. Avoiding jobs where I could get into group conflicts might not be in my best interest...

On the other side, I'm very good at getting around my weakness when it comes to riding. No matter the few pounds overweight I face in the mirror, the horse will weigh more. Spend enough time with horses, you learn how to trick them into doing what you want them to do.

I actually managed to throw a 1000 lbs gelding into the wall once. I got tired of him pushing me around, so I waited until he started moving and then put all my weight against his hindlegs. He didn't expect it so stumbled right into the wall. He never tried the same stunt on me again.

Lindsay said...

First of all, LOL. Second of all, zennioptical.com. SERIOUSLY. xo

www said...

also a man who has lost multiple pairs of glasses in the water... I feel your pain. But love your smiling take on it... VERY entertaining.... suckhole? quite enjoyable.... stellar images... nutsack and lady parts? haaa..

Cathy Titus Neumueller said...

Thanks for the Monday AM chuckle. Sorry about the glasses.

I write at least a page a day and make it a rule to get the page done before email or websurfing.

Good thing I don't have a rule about sneaking a little blog reading at work.

Cathy

sharlalovelace.com said...

You can make any occurrence funny, that is truly your gift!!

I have the same plotting problem you mentioned. I can have all good intentions, fill up my whiteboard with lines and scribbles and outlines and plot points. Then by the time I've written page ten, it's gone off like a misbehaving dog, sniffing out what's better on the next block.

Susan S said...

I so identify. That's exactly the kind of thing I used to do (in the pre-lasik days...though it's almost to the point where I'm going to need them again, and I'm going right back to the "buy cheap ones because you'll lose them" routine). Still do it with all kinds of other objects, too.

As far as coping strategies? I like to say my entire life is a "work-around" - but an awesome one. (OK, maybe only in my eyes?)

One of my biggest weaknesses is staying up too late with a good book. Unfortunately, the only work-around I've found for that is "start the book by 7pm or you don't get to start it on a weeknight." I don't actually comply with this one often, but I try to claim it's a theory.

In reality, it's about as successful as my resolution not to bring any more books home from writers' conferences. Last time my husband and son didn't even try to hide their laughter when I said it.

And yeah, I came home with 12 books.

Oh well.

Embrace your quirks - they're what we all love about you!

Caryn Caldwell said...

I am the exact same way with sunglasses! And white shirts. And, back when I wore them, watches. When I find good ones I stock up. I have maybe five or six pairs of sunglasses and, if I'm lucky, can actually find one or two when I need them(but no more than that, so I can't be choosy). If only I could have five sets of keys for when I lose them...

Jason said...

I'm sorry - I can't get past "potential nutsack frostbite." That is so not cool. Or maybe it is. Yikes.

Tawna Fenske said...

Andrea, I've got plenty of 'em.

Nicole, you have to laugh at yourself. There's really no other option :)

Matthew, I break plenty of them, too!

Sarah, you must share your favorite YouTube links so I can waste time, too!

lynnrush, you LAUGH at my misfortune?!?!?!

Linda G, ha! Where did that happen? I'm curious if it was Barbados. Pretty common there.

Malin, did you get pictures? :)

Lindsay, Ohmygod, how did I never know about that site?!?!?! I'm hooked!

www, you should have heard the conversation yesterday afternoon. "Hey, is it OK if I mention your nutsack in a blog post?" Ummm....

Cathy, I'm so glad you don't have to break any rules for me :)

sharlalovelace, I should try the whiteboard sometime. At least then I can PRETEND I attempted to plot.

Susan, I've been wondering if Lasik might work for me, but I'm a little creeped out about someone messing with my eyeballs.

Caryn, I try hard not to get too attached to white shirts, but I always fail.

Jason, I wonder if he could sue me for that?

Thanks for reading, guys!
Tawna

Linda G. said...

Tawna -- I think it was St. Maarten. Either that or the Bahamas. He's been to both, and I can't remember exactly which one the monkey story is from. Pretty sure it was St. Maarten, though.