Thursday, July 21, 2011

Superhuman Abilities

I don't mean to brag, but I do have superhuman abilities. The unfortunate thing is that my superhuman abilities aren't superhero abilities. I can't lift gigantic amounts of weight..I'm pretty puny in the upper body strength area. I can't run with amazing speed. I've run two 5K's and in neither was I the winner by a mile... (or a K, as the case may be!) No, my superhuman abilities are ones that annoy the crap out of my husband. According to Nate, I have superhuman hearing. If the car starts to make a strange noise, I'm the one that hears it first...but not just first.... I'm the only person that hears it. Right now is one of those times. There is a noise coming from the back of the car.... as it is only when we are moving, I'm assuming that it is coming from one of the wheels. And I have diagnosed it to be a wheel bearing. We have taken the car to two shops...neither has found the need for a new bearing. In fact, one of them rotated our tires to help stop the noise, and yet I still insist that there is a weird noise and that we need a new bearing. As my dear husband has taken it in to be checked on two separate occasions, you can imagine how he feels when I mention that I can still hear the noise. He has told me that our car is aging and that it may develop some new noises as it ages and that I should just get used to the new noises. So, as I was driving home from work today and still heard the noise I sighed and decided that the mechanics must know what they are talking about. So, I wish I didn't have this ability because I'm not able to relax and enjoy driving. The other superhuman ability I wish I didn't have is superhuman smelling abilities. I can smell almost everything. How this annoys my husband, as the hearing one does as well, is that I'll say, "Do you smell that?" or "What's that noise?" and he rolls his eyes and looks at me like he wishes I'd stop forgetting that I have these amazing abilities that he doesn't possess. I've decided he's jealous....that must be it..... With the superhuman smelling abilities, there is one minor flaw. It is very closely connected with an amazing gag reflex. I smell something revolting, I gag. If the smell continues to invade my olfactory nerves, I throw up. This was very inconvenient when my family lived in Haiti. My family spent several years in Haiti and I must say, thankfully, that I haven't smelled horrific odors of that intensity ever since. I would have to take one of my dad's handkerchiefs and spray it with some sort of perfume before we went through a certain area of Port-au-Prince called Carrefour (pronounced: Car-FU). And unfortunately, at times, the handkerchief was not enough. Today, however, my superbly pronounced olfactory nerves took a beating. Ann Arbor has a fairly high homeless population. And if you remember from yesterday's post, we're in the middle of a heat wave. I was walking to work following a homeless man that I've seen many times. I call him "Mr. Fireman." He normally wears fireman boots and wears a fireman coat, hence the name....makes sense, I believe. Today, I was glad to see that he wasn't wearing the coat, but he was still wearing the boots. I was slightly disconcerted to see that he had a pickax in his backpack, but that's hopefully something we won't ever need to worry about. So, as I was getting closer and focusing on the pickax, a very horrifying smell of body odor assailed me and I was instantly gagging. I couldn't decide what to do. Should I quickly move past him, should I retreat and walk even slower? I hesitated long enough to get one more whiff and immediately decided to pass. The problem is that as I was closing the gap, the smell/gagging intensified. I was trying to stifle it. I certainly was not upset with Mr. Fireman. I understand that it's hot, and you have been outside for a while and inevitably you'll begin to sweat. But just as I can't blame him, I hope no one thinks that I have some control over my reaction. Trust me. If there was a way to control it, I would have learned it after living in Haiti for two years. I can thankfully say that I did get by him before I threw up. My hope is that he didn't even notice the woman bent over with her hand over her mouth pretending to cough/gag as she walked by at an ever quickening pace....for some reason I don't think I pulled that one off.

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