Playing with fire

I’m not typically a jealous woman. I have no reason to be. 

The Carpenter’s only mistresses (yes, plural) to date have been inanimate objects, temporary distractions to amuse him. 

Take his obsession with his iPad, which I bitterly referred to as “the other woman.” 

Inanimate and cold, he spent hours staring at her, swiping the glass screen, giggling at her retina display. I wasn’t so much jealous as I was annoyed. 

One day, she just broke down. He couldn’t turn that iPad on no matter how he tried (so many punchlines). Gosh, I don’t know how that happened to her (innocent shoulder shrug). Huh? Odd.  

His mobile phone is another loved device, but then, who doesn’t love their mobile phone? A little restraint would be nice though. The sound of his index finger tapping at the rectangular screen, like a drunk woodpecker pecking at a brick wall irritates me to no end. 

Sometimes I text him, “Look up” so he will realize I am in the room. But like almost everyone with a mobile phone these days, his engagement with the world around him is temporary before he falls back into the vortex of useless social media feeds and sports scores.

I admit I am capable of the same level of distraction, but it’s more an occupational hazard than anything. That’s my excuse. Also, I love sea otter and polar bear videos, so I get sidetracked. It happens.

But the Carpenter’s got a new love and I confess I’m feeling a smoldering of jealousy. 

The Carpenter is playing with fire, literally. His hot mistress has lit a spark in him that has had him all fired up throughout this long Canadian winter. 

She’s a wood stove. That’s right, my husband is in love with the wood stove. 

When we moved to the country in December, I didn’t know the wood stove would be the thing to come between us, but every time I turn around, he is stoking her, fanning the flames, rolling the coals, tending to her every need – and oh boy, is she needy. 

I realize now that any references I make to wood will go terribly wrong, so let’s just say, when the wood stove logs are burning bright, the Carpenter stands back and marvels at her, like she’s a thing of cast iron beauty, alight with orange, yellow and blue flames. 

The absolute worst is when I stand back and marvel at her too. She’s seductive. Who doesn’t love the smell of burning wood and the heat that fills the room, and those mesmerizing flames dancing in the darkness? 

Wow. What’s wrong with me? This is what comes when townies move to the country; we’re distracted by real life stuff like it’s all a miracle. It’s awesome. 

I cannot compete with the Carpenter’s new obsession. I can’t extinguish her either or I’ll freeze to death. 

But every now and again I mess with the vent when nobody’s looking. I turn it down low. Who’s got the hot flashes now, baby? Huh? 

I cannot wait for spring when she goes cold. 

Wait, then it’s bonfire season. 


WriteOut of Her Mind