… and they used to do everything together. When they were first married Thelma and Rohan would decide everything together. What is the best variety of lettuce to plant in the garden? What shall we do for our anniversary? What painting should we hang above the fireplace? What special things shall we do this coming summer?
These days it was altogether different. After forty years each presumed they knew the other’s mind. The presumption was that years’ of teamwork meant the other rarely need be asked.
So when Thelma went to stay for a week or so with her elderly failing sister, Rohan decided to surprise Thelma by repainting the dining room. And indeed, Thelma was surprised! She didn’t say a word other than cluck with delight, but what a disgusting colour! Bright pink! She would have to live with it for the next ten years or so.
When Rohan’s saw bench reached the end of its earthly usefulness, Thelma bought him a new one for Christmas. Of course he acted delighted. In fact he acted quite tickled pink, but it was the wrong type of saw bench. Rohan had to secretly buy another one and pretend he was using the one from Thelma.
These were little things of course, but they built up, built up. One day, Thelma blurted out that she hated the colour of the dining room. They argued and Rohan revealed that she had given him the wrong saw bench.
These days, they’re back to discussing things and making mutual decisions. Life is a lot easier.
When Mitchell stood up straight from weeding the garden, he accidentally hit his head on a plank that the house painters had placed between two ladders. It was quite a severe knock and Mitchell had concussion. He spent three days in hospital before returning home.
What amazed people, including specialists, was that the accident seemed to have activated a section of his brain hitherto dormant. Suddenly Mitchell discovered he could paint pictures of cute field mice; field mice in a corn field; field mice eating cheese; field mice taunting cats. He even painted a delightfully intricate picture of a mouse flying a de Havilland Tiger Moth aircraft! These paintings sold for hefty prices; so hefty in fact that Mitchell and his wife were able to purchase a house free from debt.
“They’re not simply pictures of mice,” said the curator of the city museum, “it’s the thought processes behind it. Mitchell is able to convey feelings of beauty, insignificance, aloneness, grandeur. Even the sky above the mice conveys varying deep emotions. With one knock on the head he is able to portray scenes of incomparable exquisiteness.”
Unfortunately, Mitchell drove his wife to drink. He was totally nuts.
Stella had the most beautiful hair. Her hair was the envy of everyone. All who saw it couldn’t help but gush with wonder and admiration. It was almost as if Stella was a mutation. Her hair was probably why the artist had asked Stella if she would mind posing for a painting.
“Just look up to the ceiling for a minute if you would,” asked the painter.
“Turn your head slightly to the right,” asked the painter.
“Gently frisk your hair to the left. Just a little! Perfect!” said the artist.
“All done,” said the artist. Pablo Picasso put down his brushes.
Stella had the most beautiful hair. It was just a shame she had only one eye and in the middle of her forehead, three ears, and a nose that pointed in two directions at once.