The Persistent Perversity of the Inanimate Object

I have no idea who coined that phrase but as far as I’m concerned they had the right idea.  I never met a piece of furniture that really liked me.

I can approach a chair, any chair; maybe it’s been sitting in the exact same spot for the past ten years. As soon as I eye it, whether to sit down, walk past or just give it a light dusting, that perverse object will mysteriously find a way to move a few inches to the left or right, or a few inches behind its usual spot, deviously setting a trap for me.

If I want to walk by, a chair leg juts out and I trip.  If I plan to sit down, a cushion shifts and PLOP, I’m on the floor. If I approach it with furniture polish and a dust cloth, these being intended for its own benefit, does it appreciate my effort?  No, it refuses to shine.

Tables, sofas, beds, dressers; all mean and spiteful. No one else has these problems.  I shouldn’t take them personally except that I’ve come to realize they are personal.  It really is all about me, one giant conspiracy.

Appliances get even crankier.  I’ve had enough shocks from my small appliances to clean out Death Row at San Quentin if they still used the electric chair.  Refrigerators grab my fingers and fling ice cubes at me, and I once caught my hair in a microwave.  I just managed to save it before it frizzed off.  Talk about a permanent wave!  My washer dances a jig across my fallen arches every time it goes into the SPIN cycle.

As for my car, that ungrateful old relic has a dozen tricks to spite me.  Its favorite is refusing to start as I grind away on the starter, inevitably flooding it. All old cars do this, but about the time I give up and open the door to investigate, the engine will catch with a big jerk, bent on throwing me out.  Or, to give it the benefit of the doubt, maybe I’m the big jerk and the engine is just doing what engines do.  I don’t know.

I would seriously consider walking everywhere except that there’s always that broken sidewalk or loose brick waiting.  I have scars on my knees going back to the First Grade. My various scars are like road maps to a life of mishaps.   Besides, the WALK/DON’T WALK signs deliberately leave me out in no-man’s-land at a 4 lane cross street with no island, just because I was trying to beat the traffic.  Now tell me that’s not deliberate.

A simple act of lifting the lid on the bin where I return my library books maimed me for life.  It grabbed my left thumb and changed the print forever.  Since then I return the books to the desk inside.  Thankfully, I’ve only tripped over the threshold once as it cunningly lay in wait.  Crawling around on your hands and knees picking up library books in front of 17 pre-schoolers who are there for Story Hour is embarrassing, especially as they thought I was acting  out a scene for them, probably Jack and Jill without the pail of water.

Tools and utensils are the absolute worst. I have a history with every single one I own.  You’ve heard of hammer-toe?  How about hammered fingers, ten of them?  I no longer try to hang pictures.  If I can’t glue them to the wall without their sliding down, they will just sit on the floor, lean back and glare at me reproachfully.

We won’t even get into electronics.  Let’s just say I wasn’t cut out to cope with this electronic age.  O M G,  L O L.  If robots ever learn to program themselves, I’ll be in really, really deep trouble.


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