If the way to a man’s heart is through his stomach, I am doomed. I love my husband and generally wish him no harm. But lately, I am getting tired of his accusations involving his lunch which I painstakingly make for him each morning to bring to work. He says it tastes like Windex. No, in case you might ask, he is not suffering from any mental disorder involving paranoia. He has all his faculties and then some, perhaps that is why his taste buds are so finely tuned. And in fairness, the accusations do not come daily but generally once a month or so, and typically hone in on his turkey sandwich. Though yesterday he called in a panic to claim his grapes had a toxic-like taste as well. Not Windex this time, but something equally “bad”. “Don’t eat the grapes!” he shrieked. He asks if I am slowly trying to kill him.
And from where would this delusion arise? He claims to have seen me, on more than one occasion, spraying the kitchen counter in abandon and has attested to seeing droplets of Windex lingering in the air, slowly making their way down to his coffee cup. “You don’t pay attention,” he chides. He claims I inherited this trait from my mother. In fairness, he is not entirely wrong. She was a wonderful woman but indeed careless at times. I recall childhood memories of a defunct and blackened microwave oven, hidden in the corner of our garage, meekly awaiting my father’s return from work. A severe reminder that aluminum foil and microwaves do not mix. I can envision still, her pink plush bathrobe seared up the back, a result of standing too close to the stove’s gas burner on particularly frigid mornings before the heat kicked in. He reminds me of the time she added a packet of lemon dish cleanser, which had arrived as a free sample in that day’s mail, to our family’s chicken dinner. Luckily, before the dish was consumed, my sister remarked that the sauce had “bubbles” alerting my mother to a potential disaster.
I don’t know how to put him at ease. Take a bite out of his sandwich prior to packing? Do away with all my kitchen cleansers entirely and use only white wine vinegar (though that could mimic an industrial type cleanser taste as well). Consult with a professional? Yesterday, as I topped off his brown bag lunch with an apple and Hershey kiss, I tucked in a yellow stick-um note as well, as I sometimes do in my son’s lunch. It simply said “Made with love not Windex.”