The Art of Hunting Husbands

You may have assumed this is one of those husband-getting guides for single gals. It isn’t. Single men are easy to find. They stand around in herds just waiting to get picked off. No, when it comes to hiding, married men are the experts. By hiding, I don’t mean crawling under the house with Buford the Blue Tick Hound. Married men are too smart to pull a stunt like that. They know we wives would just have them hauled out and locked-up in the local loony bin.
Married men aren’t interested in getting out of sight anyway. They want to be out of earshot. They apparently think, when they listen to their wives, terrible things can happen. Things a married man might consider “terrible” are: household repairs, taking out garbage, taking out the wallet, dealing with unruly offspring or having lengthy discussions (meaning any conversation consisting of more than five words spoken in sequence within 24-hour period of time.) In short, men seek to avoid any situation, which may result in screaming, leaking, stinking, sweating, spending $ or their mother-in-law moving in.
Unfortunately, sidestepping these situations isn’t always easy. A husband cannot be truthful or forthright about his feelings. If a married man were to say: “Honey, I don’t care if the kids are out-of-control, your great Aunt Sally is sick and the basement is flooded. I just got this Sports Illustrated in the mail, and I want to read it.”
Such an act of honesty would inevitably result in a lengthy discussion (see list of “terrible” things) with a very irate wife.
Likewise, married men cannot evade unpleasantness by physically removing themselves from the situation. Any husband, who goes to play golf or poker while the wife is at home dealing with a sick child, tax returns or sibling-incited riot, would be wise to check for leaks in Buford’s doghouse on his way out. This is where he’ll likely be sleeping.
So, given that the obvious escape routes are unacceptable, husbands develop an amazing ability to hide in plain sight. For some men, the hiding place is in the office, the workshop or the garage. For Southern men, it is on their lawn mower. Not very stealthy, you think? Actually, it is.
In the inequitable division of household duties, outdoor chores may be assigned to the man. If the he accepts this responsibility, the woman will overlook his fascination with mowers, whackers, washers, and blowers. She will refrain from complaining when his obsession takes up too much time. I mean, really, what kind of wife nags her poor weary husband for doing too much yard-work? Consequently, this obsession also serves as a handy retreat?
I’ve noticed when things get tense around our house; my husband suddenly becomes fixated on the growth rate of our grass.
This frantic need to cut the grass has little to do with the grass and a lot to do with the household environment. If things are too loud, busy or there’s a possibility I might ask him to do something, he makes himself scarce.
“Would ya look at that! Grass is getting’ high. Gotta mow.”
After all, if he can’t sit around the house all day, watching sports and scratching, what is the next best thing? Sitting on his lawn mower, daydreaming about sports and scratching, which would explain why my water hose keeps getting mangled.
A wife can say, “Honey, I’m going to the bookstore/art exhibit/shoe sale/to visit my mother. Are you coming?”
“Can’t. Gotta mow!”
“Honey, the kids have been surfboarding in the basement. Can you fix that leak today?”
“Can’t. Gotta mow!”
“Honey, the kids caught the doghouse on fire, and I couldn’t put it out because someone mangled the water hose. Didn’t you hear me yelling for help?”
“Nope, I was mowing.”
Yes, a man’s mower is his get-away vehicle. If you doubt this theory, take a trip to the nearest Lowe’s or authorized John Deere dealership. The machines there are obviously not built for work. They are man-friendly escape-pods with cup holders, radios, and built in lumbar support. So, mowers are a dodge, and a clever one too. Mowing makes husbands unapproachable, emancipated and above reproach. And the truth is: I’ve no clue how to get these men off their mowers and out of hiding. Perhaps they could be cured by a dose of their own medicine?
“Honey, would you like to accompany me to a manly beer drinking, motor racing, sweaty-type of activity?” they’d say.
“Can’t. Gotta Vacuum!”
“Honey, didn’t you hear me yelling for you! It was an emergency! The remote batteries died!”
“Nope. I was vacuuming.”
“Honey, can you…?”
“Nope, gotta vacuum.”
“Honey, will you…
“Nope! Gotta Vacuum!”
“Honey, where’s the…
“Don’t know. Gotta Vacuum!”
“HONEY! Did you back YOUR car over MY lawn mower?”
“Oh Gee! Would you look at that! The carpet sure is getting dirty. Better go Vacuum!”
Hmmm, I wonder if they make cup holders for Dirt Devils.

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