Friday, March 10, 2006

Men, have you weighed your pants lately?

I have this friend who said his wife walked into the bathroom one day and saw his pants on the floor. She picked them up and apparently noticed they seemed heavy, so she proceeded to weigh them.

They weighed 4.5 pounds.

"I like to fill my pockets with great stuff, just like when I was a
kid," he told me.

"At my funeral people can say, 'He wore the pants in the family, at least those ridiculously heavy ones.' In fact, I think I'll give my pants a new name,'5-pounders.'As in, 'Sweetheart, have you seen my blue 5-pounders lately, I
left them crumpled up next to the bed last night, and now they're just
gone.' "

I asked him, "So what's the typical inventory of your pants?"

(This prompted my wife to say, "You have strange conversations with him.")

This is what he said:

"Always the same:

left pocket: 2 sets of keys (28 keys total, 3 remote controls, 1 led
flashlight, mustang key fob), swiss army knife, leatherman, cell phone

right pocket: camera, coins, ball point pen

right watch pocket: tiny bottle of breath freshener (I use it when
talking to folks at work, makes 'em think I have some medical condition
or drug addiction -- they NEVER ask)

left rear pocket: wallet

right rear pocket: small notebook for writing observations, handkerchief"

My friend is a very methodical person. He's a senior software engineer. I have no doubt that his pants inventory doesn't vary a bit from day to day.

We were roommates our freshman year in college, residing on the 8th floor of Jester dorm at the Unversity of Texas.

Once, in the middle of the night, he woke me from a deep sleep and handed me a glass of chocolate milk. "Drink this," he said. I was still groggy but did as he told me, without saying a word.

Then I went back to sleep.

The next morning, he explained that feared he poisoned me because I had drank something out of a container that at one point had contained some bleach. He was afraid I might die in my sleep and he knew that milk was a home remedy for such an unfortunate poisoning (even though he wasn't entirely sure there was enough bleach residue left in the container to do me in.)

Better to be safe than sorry. That's the methodical, senior software engineer side of his brain working there, I believe.

If our roles had been reversed, I confess I would have been more likely to wonder, while lying in bed, if I had removed all the bleach from the container my roommate had just drank from; then I would have drifted off to sleep still wondering about the potential bleach problem.

Ever since then, he likes to tell people he saved my life way back 30-something years ago. If it's true, I appreciate the hell out of it. And if it's not true, it makes for a good story. We always laugh about it.

I'm quite sure that the inventory of his pants pockets will remain the same until he finally has "The Big One," from lugging all that extra weight around with him. He's a real creature of habit. And today, if he woke me up in the middle of the night and handed me some chocolate milk and told me to drink it, I have no doubt I'd do exactly as he said, without saying a word, and then go back to sleep.

No comments: