Jon reaches into the refrigerator and grabs the gallon of skim milk. I’m standing two feet away over a pan of eggs, a blood red spatula in my hand. Out of the corner of my eye I can see him sniff the top of the carton, pause, and then sniff it again. Because within two seconds that milk just might smell different. YOU NEVER KNOW.
Unless you’re a psychic. Then, yeah. You knew.
He grimaces in a kind-of-but-not-really-passive-aggressive way to get me to ask him what is wrong.
“You don’t look happy,” I say.
“Smell this and tell me what you think,” he says. There are so many things wrong with this that I don’t even have time to start listing them. But I’ll do it anyway since I’m sitting here writing this and not out trying to save the world: the smell of that milk just made him grimace, and now his misery wants company?
Screw it, I’m the one who watches scrotal botfly infestation videos. If I don’t smell it then somewhere in here is a double standard, and since I haven’t had coffee yet there isn’t much in my stomach in case I puke.
I sniff the carton and can’t smell a damn thing. “It’s fine,” I say and then I turn my focus back to the eggs. He pours the milk into the frother, powers it up, and then returns the carton back to the refrigerator. And then he shrugs. No, he dramatically shrugs. You don’t dramatically shrug unless you’re being passive aggressive, and you don’t notice someone dramatically shrugging unless you are looking specifically to nitpick.
“Why are you shrugging?” I ask, looking to nitpick.
“It’s just, the Sell By date on the milk is five days ago,” he answers.
“WHAT?!” I scream. “You’re going to use milk that went bad five days ago?!” Except it sounded like, “WHO THE HELL ARE YOU ANYMORE?”
“I asked you to smell it!” he explained. “You said it was fine!”
“But you didn’t tell me it expired five days ago!”
“Does that date matter if it smells fine?”
“DOES IT MATTER?! Who is going to drive us to the hospital when we both collapse from E. coli, JON? Leta can’t see over the steering wheel!”
He purposefully moves very slowly toward the frother, turns it off and takes it to the sink to pour it out. “You do realize that this was a classic case of spousal miscommunication?”
“Meaning you didn’t communicate to me that the milk was expired?”
“Meaning I DIDN’T KNOW THE EXPIRATION DATE WAS YOUR BIBLE.”