Wednesday, April 2, 2008

Selective Eyesight

Jennifer over at Playgroups are No Place for Children recently wrote a post titled Male Pattern Blindness. I loved it. It is eerily familiar to the male-dominated household ailment (MDHA) I like to call Selective Eyesight. We have a lot of sensory-related illnesses at our house. You may have read about Selective Hearing on this blog. Selective Eyesight is closely related.

Selective Eyesight is that MDHA that allows the males in my household to randomly and specifically choose what they want to see and what they want to ignore. For example, my husband opened the refrigerator door the other day two times before I did. He bent over. He opened the fruit drawer. He had to, HAD TO, have seen the half inch deep, covering the entire bottom of the refrigerator, sour smelling puddle of olive juice that had spilled down the back of the refrigerator from an overturned bottle of olives on the top shelf. I noticed it immediately upon opening the refrigerator.

I cleaned it up. I could have said nothing. I could have just let it go. But...I couldn’t. “Did you not see the big puddle in the bottom of the refrigerator?”

“No (rather huffily). What was it?”

“Olive juice,” I said.

“Well, I don’t eat olives.”

As if not eating olives should make him blind to a big-ass puddle of olive juice in the bottom of the refrigerator. I’m giggling as I write this. He’s getting annoyed as he reads it. Moving on.

My boys have their own version of Selective Eyesight. They choose not to see the pile of dirty clothes in the middle of their bedroom floor as they step over it night after night. Or, they choose to see it and roll around in it, hide in it, hit each other with it, anything but put it in the hamper.

When looking for a lost toy, they cannot see it, even though it is usually right in front of their faces. But, they spot the teeny, tiny spider in the corner of their room, behind the chair, under the teddy bear, under the book, in the crack, with one tiny toe sticking out. How is that even possible?

Sometimes, I just think it is a non-observant thing. They get so caught up in what they are doing, they lose track of their own surroundings. I once sat and listened to Luke talk to Jack for almost a full 5 minutes before Luke realized Jack wasn’t even in the room. Luke was really getting mad at Jack for not answering. The only reason he figured out Jack wasn’t in the room was when he decided he had enough of Jack ignoring him and went to punch Jack, only to finally realize Jack wasn’t even in the room. I got punched instead for laughing.

And of course, there’s the Selective Eyesight that comes with laziness. It doesn’t matter that I am trying to get from the car to the house with my purse, the shoes that have been kicked off in the car, the coats that have been shed, the backpacks, the school papers, the Gameboys, the purchases made on the way home, the mail, and the keys to open the door. None of that seems to register in the eyes of the male suffering from Selective Eyesight. Someone will ask me to carry something. Usually Luke. It goes something like this: “Will you carry these toys for me because I only have two hands and already have two things to carry.” Hellllooo? Can’t you see all of the things I’m carrying? Um, no, he can’t. He has Selective Eyesight, and he selects to block out everything but my two hands. And to him, those hands are empty.

14 comments:

calibosmom said...

My oldest son has this selective eyesight disease. We ask him to go look for something and it can be directly in front of his face and its always to same response "I cannot find it". I think I need to tell him to NOT find something and then maybe he will.

Jenn @ Juggling Life said...

In my house this disease afflicts female children also!

jennifer said...

I hope one day science will find a cure!

Momo Fali said...

This sounds familiar. My husband walked right past a bowl our dog had dragged out of the sink, and the big puddle of milky water that was in it. He claimed he didn't see it, but he basically had to have stepped right over it. Ugh.

Loth said...

I had made a note to myself to blog about this very thing! (So if I do, I am not copying, honest. Okay? thanks.) You are NOT alone and it IS genetic!!

Mrs. G. said...

I had no idea that this affliction (which is suffered by both the men in my home)had a name. Is there any medication I can buy?

Angie said...

Seriously, Heather, you could pen a book with all the new syndromes/ailments/diseases you have named and diagnosed from the MD house you live in. What can we do to rid ourselves of these ailments besides become empty nesters?

KEEP BELIEVING

Kellan said...

Yes, there are 5 other poeple in my house that have selective eyesight! I am often complaining to one person or the other about not seeing something that is plain to see - it is so frustrating!

Hope you are having a good week Heather - see you later - Kellan

laughingatchaos said...

Oh, your guys have this too? Must be on the Y chromosome. ;)

Joeprah said...

So, the funny thing is that my wife has selective eyesight as well. I stay at home and she works, but I notice the same things you do, the phenomenon goes beyond gender me thinks... ;)

Susan said...

Hahahahaha. Misery loves company. In our house, we call it the SOI rule. Check it out here: http://fourinarow.net/2007/09/17/the-soi-rule/
What is up with that, anyway?

Andrea said...

Goes right along with selective hearing... LOL! Thanks for the chuckle!

Robin said...

It is so bad in our house, I have to remind my boys that if they are looking for their shoes, they will have better luck searching the floor and not the ceiling. AARGH!

Damama T said...

LOLOLOL!! At our house, Hubby is the find-it guy. He swears I look for things with one eye closed and my hand over the other! But I do remember those, "can you carry this for me" days... It's amazing that kids just don't change. LOL!