A Piece of Cake

road-sign-lost“A piece of cake” is a phrase I often use just prior to embarking on some self induced disaster.  My wife immediately recognizes the implications and, if at all possible, removes herself from both involvement and the anticipated result.

I don’t know why even the simplest tasks seem to take on a life of their own once I undertake them.  After all, it is only because of the constant reminders that I am doing them at all.  I keep telling my wife “I told you I would do it.  You don’t have to keep reminding me every six months”.

When we bought our first house several years ago, I saw a water stain in the ceiling on the first floor directly under the upstairs bath.  I can fix that” I said.  “A piece of cake”.  So I set about removing the tiles from the walls around the faucet in the tub, trying to be careful not to break any as they would have been impossible to match.  Of course, I broke several, but that is another story.  The bottom line is, I spent the whole weekend in the bathtub fixing the leak, and replacing wallboard and tile.  It wasn’t until much later that, upon removing a sheet of paneling in the adjacent bedroom that I found the access panel to the plumbing.  Probably could have fixed it in an hour.  This is, I suspect, about the time that “piece of cake” began to take on a negative vibe.

I find that, over the years, I have used the phrase most frequently when driving.  Not just driving, but driving somewhere I have never been before, either on purpose, or accidentally.  It makes no difference.  Finding my way is always “a piece of cake.”

I remember a cross country trip we once took that put us on a freeway in the middle of Columbus Ohio during evening rush hour.  My intrepid navigator and map reader, who was by necessity forced to participate, if not wholly condoning my actions, searched feverishly to determine where we were.  She finally located one of the exit street names on the map and told me we had already passed our exit.  I then reasoned I would have to go to the next exit and turn around.  “What is the name of the next exit” I asked.  “There isn’t one” she replied in a calm, rational voice as if that even made sense.  Trying once again, I asked “So where does this freeway go?”  “It doesn’t go anywhere” she said.  My first instinct was to stop right in the middle of the traffic and rip the map from her hands and apply some “man sense” to the situation.  But, knowing instinctively that the situation could immediately become ugly if I did that, both inside and outside the car, I continued to drive, in silence, for a few miles.  And guess what?  After exiting the city, the freeway ended.  It hadn’t been built any further.  It dead ended at an on/off ramp and an overpass.  Yeah, right.  What’s the chance of that happening.

Cutting my losses, I took the overpass and proceeded to drive back into the city until I saw the exit I wanted across the freeway.  Unfortunately, there was no  exit on my side.  So I proceeded on to the next exit where I would just cross over the freeway and re-enter going in the right direction.  However, as luck would have it, when I did so, I found there was no overpass.  You could only turn right, which I did.  No problemo.  I decided to just go a couple of blocks and get back on the turnpike.

After about twenty minutes of wandering around in a dingy industrial area and frequenting several deserted factory parking lots, while listening to a near constant commentary on my vehicular prowess, I suddenly emerged on an overpass over the freeway, after which I saw the exit sign, pointing me not only in the right direction, but also one exit down from where I needed to get back off.  Smugly, I entered the flow of traffic and, turning toward my wife said “See, I told you I wasn’t lost.  It was a piece of cake”.

You would think, given my lack of sense of direction, among other senses, that the GPS was invented with me in mind.  But that would be a misnomer.  I can get lost with it or without it.  There just seems to be a disconnect between where I want to go and where it is telling me to go.  And there is nothing more annoying then an electronic female voice constantly saying “re-configuring route.”  It’s easy to tell that she is not from around here.  And if by some stroke of good fortune that the GPS girl and I both agree on and arrive at the same desired destination, I half expect her to say “you have arrived at your destination.  A piece of cake my ass”.

About oldmainer

I am a retired manager living in Southern Maine and a would be writer of poetry, narratives, short stories, and random opinions, and that's how Oldmainer was born. Recently, I decided to try an experiment. I added photography to the mix, using only a cheap cell phone with a limited camera and the editing software that came with it, and added the blog site Inklings at poormanspoet.wordpress.com to showcase the results. So, feel free to use whatever you find interesting or worthy, but please honor the terms of my copyright when and if you do. They may not be much, but they are still a piece of me. I appreciate your checking me out and hope that you find something that will encourage a return visit. Thanks for stopping by.
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1 Response to A Piece of Cake

  1. laurie27wsmith says:

    Good one Bob, we use the ‘She’ll be right’ over here. It covers a multitude of sins and situations and gives you a comforting, albeit false sense of security.


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