Most people don’t realize that I am a great communicator in the vein of Ronald Reagan, a/k/a The Great Communicator. Despite my grandest efforts to impress this concept upon the minds of others, technical difficulties in the transmission or reception of this information have repeatedly hindered my efforts.
Despite great advances in the conveyance of information in its many forms, whether oral, written, gestures, and even basic guttural utterances, the biggest problem with communication is a gap. This communication gap works like digital television reception. If it is disrupted, the picture comes through in fits and starts, while the dialogue sounds like “gick, gack, gack-gack, gick…”
At times our marital telepathic interactions work great – we know each other’s thoughts, and at times even think alike. Although, at times the art of expressing and conveying ideas between us crumble into an interchange of words that don’t accomplish their intended purpose of verbal expression, which the brain interprets as “gick, gack, gack-gack, gick…”.
The debit card has been a wonderful thing. Instead of filling out check blanks, all I have to do is swipe it through a slotted doohickey, answer a couple of questions and away I go. The trick is to remember to record the transaction in the checkbook register later. Occasionally, an entry is forgotten, but all in all, I do pretty well.
However, on one occasion, we had a communication gap regarding an entry. I was busy doing whatever it is I was busy doing at the time, when Katie who was reconciling the checkbook, asked me, “What is this entry in the checkbook about?”
“What entry is that?” I asked.
“All it says is “Garage,” with slight annoyance in her voice.
“That’s who it’s to.” I informed her matter-of-factly, knowing that I had done the right thing by entering the info in the register promptly.
“But ‘Garage’ only tells me what you spent the money on but not where you spent
I quickly realized that a communication gap had entered the room and threatened
to enlarge itself to “gacky” proportions. I quickly made an effort to deflate it before it could cause “no signal” to flash across the blank screen of conveyance. “I did not spend the money ON the garage, I spent the money AT the Garage.”
“What’s the difference?” She asked. Reception was impaired, or was it the
“I had the pickup repaired.”
“So?” Obviously, my attempts to head-off this event were failing.
“AT the Garage, not IN the garage.” Certainly, emphasizing the major differences
in the use of prepositions would clarify the issue.
“Again, what is the difference between AT the garage or IN the garage or ON the
garage or AROUND the garage? Just writing down ‘Garage’ doesn’t explain anything.”
I related, “The name of the place is The Garage,” which came across as “gicky
gackiness.” I know this because she did not respond favorably.
“Argh.” She said with absolute sincerity.
Relying on my superior communication skills to bridge the gap, I reiterated the
concept that I had thought I had related before. “I am not trying to be difficult. I had the pickup fixed at a shop called The Garage.”
“That’s a confusing name.”
She did have a point. “I didn’t name the place. There’s also a shop called The Shop.”
“Why would they do that?”
“I assume because they thought they were clever. Or else they were not very
original like naming their dog, Dog or cat, Cat.”
“Look at the confusion it causes.” It certainly had caused a communication gap to
“gickity-gack” up our marital bliss and happiness.
“Well, I had to have the heater core fixed on the pickup.”
“Why didn’t you fix it?”
“Too difficult, even the mechanic said so.”
“You didn’t get it fixed then? What did you pay money for?”
“They fixed it, but the mechanic had to tell me the story.”
“Well, do tell.”
The mechanic said, “I had to unbolt the dashboard and move it out of the way.”
I said. “I know, that is why I brought it to you.”
Mechanic:“Did you know the heater core cover was gone? It is a wonder it worked at all.”
I said: “No, but that is why I brought it to you.”
Mechanic:“I had to be a contortionist in order to get to it.”
I said: “I know that is why I brought it to you.”
Mechanic:“But I got it, I hope it doesn’t leak anymore.”
I said: “If it does, I bring it back to you.”
“If it does leak, you won’t try to fix it yourself will you?” She asked.
“Nope, I bring it back to THE GARAGE.”
“Well, next time would you put “car repair” in the second entry line?
“What do I do if I need to buy something to fix the garage?”
“Argh, you drive me crazy.”
As you can see, even the greatest of communicators can have episodes of “gick, gack, gack-gack, gick…”.