Man Eyes

If you are a woman and you have been married to a man for longer than a month, you are probably familiar with the condition known as “Man Eyes.”  Man Eyes is an affliction that renders men incapable of seeing an object they are searching for even if it is in plain sight.  There are degrees of visual impairment, but the disability seems to worsen exponentially in relation to the importance of the object to the wife who has asked him to look for it.  Perhaps the condition isn’t as pervasive among men as I fear, but most of the women I know have husbands who suffer from the condition in varying degrees.

Of course John suffers from an acute case of Man Eyes.  I have learned over the years that if the object is in plain sight, he can sometimes find it with detailed directions along with a little trial and error.  If another object has to be moved to find the item, I’m better off sending the dog to look for it.  The perfect case to illustrate my point happened last Friday.  I went to the grocery store and spent the required 45 minutes finding all the items on my list.  After placing all the groceries on the checkout counter, I opened my purse to retrieve my wallet.  After several minutes of an increasingly frantic search, I had to admit it was not there, and of course my checkbook fits neatly into my wallet so I had no way to pay for the groceries.

My first thought was that it had fallen out in the car, or I had taken it out at the office and forgot to put it back in my purse.  After searching those two spots, I called John at home so he could look there.  As I am listening to his search, my panic starts to build as each area of the house yields no results.  When he finally gives up the search, I have to grapple with the idea that perhaps someone had stolen my wallet.  I had a knot in my stomach as I mentally ran through all the credit cards I would have to cancel, automatic payments I would have to reschedule, and various forms of identification I would have to replace.

Not quite ready to admit defeat, I went back to the grocery store and retraced my steps.  I checked at customer service to see if a wallet had been found.  I had a brief moment of hope when I learned one had been turned in, but it wasn’t mine.  I briefly considered the possibility of asking for that wallet and assuming that person’s identity because it seemed easier than what lay before me.  Defeated and dejected, I spent a few minutes looking through the trashcans outside the store on the off chance that the thief had grabbed the cash and ditched the wallet at the earliest opportunity.  No luck!

I called home to tell John I was just leaving town since my search had taken almost an hour.  I was about to end the call when, as an afterthought, I asked him if he’d checked the bench in the hallway between the kitchen and the living room.  He said he had looked there but not “thoroughly” so he would try again.  To his surprise, but not mine, there was my wallet.  Relief outweighed exasperation but not by much.  The next time I need John to look for something, I’m going to tell him to put Champ on the phone.


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