Monday, February 27th 2012
(updated) That Flathead Makes Me Cry. And So Does That One. And That One.

(updated at end. geez, y’all.)

I suppose feelings are important. Other people’s feelings especially.  But I don’t place a lot of weight on them with decisions. You can’t marry just because of feelings, remain married because of feelings (surely) and I think it would be terribly unwise to let feelings guide divorce decisions. Or any other big decisions. They’re so terribly unreliable.

Or maybe it’s just mine that are unreliable.

I was having MAJOR feelings today. I cried for an hour over screwdrivers. And then I got caught. By Maria. Who thought I was crying over spilled water and wouldn’t THAT be silly, but NO, I was crying over screwdrivers. She didn’t understand. Sometimes I think she pretends not to understand me, but this time I could tell, she REALLY didn’t understand. So she looked up at the ceiling (we were inside) and said it looked like we were going to get rain.

I don’t think Maria places a lot of stock in feelings either.

When I was very young, I adored my grandfather’s ‘shop.’ The workbench in the garage, the musty grease smell and the big black clamp-y vice thing. I loved to play with it, to touch it, to get thoroughly dirty out there while he was doing whatever it was he was doing. One of my earliest sensory memories is him washing off the grease from my hands with cold, pungent paint thinner. I LOVED it.

My dad always had a ‘shop’ area in his garage, and now he has a whole giant metal barn area. His always had a matching big black clamp-y vice thing that would inflict serious pain if you dropped the handle at the wrong time. I loved getting dirty, hanging around him while he was working on things and generally getting in the way. Still do.

Today I wanted to set up my own little area in the garage. It required a LOT of cleaning and organizing and I did it. It even has paint thinner. Just not a big black clamp-y vice thing.

When Mike moved out, he took all the nails, screws, nuts, bolts, washers, tools, and every single screwdriver in the house. He’s the man. He gets custody of the screwdriver collection, I get the house and the kids, FINE, I GET IT. This doesn’t mean he can’t miss the house and kids and it doesn’t mean I can’t miss the screwdriver collection. (FEELINGS, y’all. I’m so good with them.)

Before I could feel the impact of the missing screwdrivers, he bought me a big tool set.

That was very nice, completely unnecessary, and of course few other ex-husbands would do that. I know.

But here’s the deal. Those aren’t MY screwdrivers. I know which ones to use based on the color of handle and which drawer  I stash them in. I remember which ones are my favorites and which ones never seem to work and which ones are only good for opening a can of paint.

And they’re all gone. They mostly had yellow handles, with red stripes.

The new ones? That Mike bought? I was grateful. Don’t get me wrong. And knowing Mike, they were probably REALLY nice. But they’re the kind that you have to stick the correct end part on. Each time. Like, pick your handle, pick your screwdriver tip need thing, and then assemble, and THEN you can use your screwdriver. Customize it every time, etc.

I hate that.

I hate that the old screwdrivers are gone, then this new set that just makes me feel unappreciative and stupid and uncoordinated  and I don’t want those either, and so I decided of COURSE I should just go pick out my own stupid screwdrivers.

So I did.


I hate them, TOO.

Feelings. Everybody’s got em. I was crying while sweeping the garage because the screwdriver issue just really GETS to me.

These new stupid screwdrivers are pretty and blue and teal and red and I suspect that the handles are color coded to be helpful, but I can’t tell how, and I don’t KNOW them yet. You know…?

I needed sawhorses for all my ongoing furniture makeover projects. I figured I should just get free-off-craigslist pallets and old hinges and make my own sawhorses, but I didn’t. I just got the plastic ones at Lowe’s and wondered what my grandfather would have said about that.

I don’t want the old screwdrivers back. I don’t. They’ve left, they’re gone, and I don’t want them back. But I can miss them. I don’t know what’s so confusing about that. Obviously that is a highly emotional like, THING.

And Maria was right. It rained.



when i say I’m crying over loving and losing my screwdrivers, I’m crying over loving and losing my SCREWDRIVERS. how funny that some thought that was a metaphor? with weird, kinda tacky implications? um… awkward. funny. but… awkward. sometimes it’s really about the screwdrivers. like today. REALLY, y’all. they were just really, really special. i could go on about the handles. and my favorite one with a slight bend in the shaft from prying open paint cans but I DON”T DARE DO THAT, NOW, THANKS, so you’ll just have to take my word on it. i was only talking about screwdrivers.


7 Comments on “(updated) That Flathead Makes Me Cry. And So Does That One. And That One.”

February 27th, 2012
3:02 pm

I get it. Things mean stuff too and you can definitely miss things.

I hope you have a good time getting to know your new screwdrivers. Maybe you could think of them as if you were adopting stray pets off the street? These new screwdrivers, you’re giving them a home and important work to do. Or maybe I’m overthinking this. :)

Jennifer Sullivan
February 27th, 2012
3:49 pm

I totally understood that it was about real, actual screwdrivers. I am comfortable with certain tools too. Recently my fave hammer went missing and I refused yo use another similar one. I LIKE the old, wooden handled hammer and was grateful when hubby found it.
Jennifer Sullivan recently posted..Big news people! (and a DIY update)

February 27th, 2012
4:58 pm

When we first moved to the small town where we live now, I hated shopping at the grocery store here because it wasn’t the one I knew and loved. (And don’t even get me started over the fact that there is only a Walmart here and no Target!) It was arranged differently, and they didn’t carry all the same brands I was used to, and I was always having to go back and forth through the aisles because I missed an item because it was shelved in the wrong place.

Four years later, I love my grocery store. I still remember the old one, but in many ways I now like this grocery store even better. Its aisles and arrangements and brands are familiar to me now.

What I’m trying to say is that you’ve got a lot of changes ahead of you (of which I’m sure you are quite aware) and while they’ll be frustrating at first, eventually they will be as familiar to you as the old things used to be. And you’ll look back and find that while you still have fond memories of the old things, the new ones are comfortable now, familiar, and you might even like them better than the old. It will take awhile, but it will happen. In the meantime, it’s totally okay to get emotional over screwdrivers.
Geekwif recently posted..Three Inches Of Snow – And I’m Okay With That

Mother T
February 28th, 2012
8:38 am

I totally get this post! When my first husband left for the final time, I told him that whatever he left was mine. He forgot a toolbox. My hubby and I have used those tools many times through the years. I’m sure that he was having issues getting used to the new tools and box that he had to buy, while I was relieved to be able to use tools that I was familiar with.
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February 28th, 2012
6:48 pm

Oh honey, I do understand! When our house burned, my sister-in-law said, Well look on the bright side–now you get to have all new stuff! I started sobbing helplessly, and finally gurgled, I don’t *want* new stuff! I want *my* stuff!
So go ahead and cry over the tools. Once you get it out of your system, get those new ones out and start seeing which is your favorite, and which you want to toss, and which is only good for opening paint cans.
but the ones you want to toss? Pass them on to a women’s shelter, cuz other women need tools too! Love you.
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Tracy VanPatten
March 19th, 2012
6:12 pm

OK, I just had to comment on this one!! To funny, when we moved to Idaho, I had to leave behind some stuff because we didn’t have room for it, one of the things I left behind was some apple scented soap that my sisinlaw had bought me, I cried for a week over that soap, the smell everything, sometimes it really is just about the screwdrscrewdri

Tracy VanPatten
March 19th, 2012
6:14 pm

Stupid thing is acting up, anyway, I meant screwdrivers! Funny what we cry over and really helps us!

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