Wednesday, April 28, 2010

The gendered search rules

If you have to write short reviews of the four novels you've read in the last week and you find you've mislaid one of the novels and the deadline is today, it's kind of a big deal. For ten or fifteen minutes, you flap about like a panic-stricken chook, ineffectually turning over piles of paper and clean laundry.

Then you regroup and write a list:

1) Take deep breath.

2) Have a girl's look.

3) Find book almost straight away.

4) Wonder what on earth it was doing half-hidden in a bagful of yesterday's shopping.

8 comments:

Ampersand Duck said...

Ah, you see, there's not only such a thing as a 'girl's look' but also a 'bloke's placement'. This is when your objects are temporarily displaced to weird places when the girly part of your brain was distracted.

Kerryn Goldsworthy said...

Interesting theory. From the way it was balanced on its spine between the Radiant Black Wash (for one's Melbourne blacks, ie 85% of my wardrobe) and the Dine Roast Chicken Flavour cat food, I'd say it had fallen from somewhere, but that somewhere may indeed have been a Bloke's Placement. Making the shopping bag a sort of second-generation Bloke's Placement.

Marshall-Stacks said...

My lost-things experience is that they are found after giving up, when searching for some other lost thing.

My OCD domestic-goddess offers an olden days laundry tip for when you are all out of the Radiant: add white vinegar to the rinse to coalesce fluff and lint.
peace and love

Helen said...

There is also the Balcony Law which says that if you give up searching and replace the thing then it will immediately appear. This just happened with my office keycard. You probably didn't have time to put this into effect, but if you'd raced down to the bookshop and bought another, you'd have found it as soon as you got back.

Kerryn Goldsworthy said...

Brownie, thanks for the vinegar tip. Vinegar is the Housewifei's Friend, I find.

Helen, do you find that the Balcony Law kicks in in spades when one loses one's wallet or has it stolen? After, but only after, one had endures the multiple Kafkaesque nightmares of replacing one's driver's license, Medicare card, credit cards, bank access cards, gym token, business cards, health insurance card, RAA card, library card, organ-donor card and unused Multi-Trip public transport tickets, the entire wallet containing all of those things, sometimes even including the credit cards but never any cash, will mysteriously turn up. I once had some cheeky but considerate Sydney thief slip all the cards s/he had no use for under the door of the nearest police station.

Nabakov said...

I'd like to know more about "Have a girl's look."

I'm always up for learning more about systems or processes that help me find things I've misplaced.

And I'm not sexist but...

...it is true that men and women do to tend to communicate spatial and temporal information rather differently.

More than once, while helping a woman out in the kitchen, studio or editing suite, I've heard "Can you pass me the thing from over there?"

Also exhibit B: Women's handbags/carryalls/totes - apparently possessed by chaos theory.

Mind you, I bet more than one woman has also been pissed off by a bloke's point blank refusal to admit they've been reading the motoring map wrong.

"OK, it's a very long short cut!"

They don't call 'em the opposite sex for nothing.

I guess, according to the comment bouncer, this is a "catteris" observation.

Nabakov said...

Umm, I should point here some of the best and most entertaining arguments I've ever had with women is about precisely this kinda stuff.

As long as it ends in laughter and a heightened awareness about we perceive some things differently, it's all good.

Except for "jecavel" (thank you, comments bouncer) which to me sounds like the running joke trotted out at dinner parties about the time someone got totally lost driving through New Zealand's North Island until their female companion pointed out you were working off a driving map of the South Island.

The fact I kept thinking 'Takeaway' was a Maori place name didn't help either.

Kerryn Goldsworthy said...

Oh yes, the old 'Pass me the thingy up there and the whosis over on the whatsitsname' routine. Absolutely true. If challenged on this, a lady should reply 'You should have known without me telling you.'

Re 'takeaway', the 'y' should have been the tip-off.

I have an excellent sense of direction as long as the map is turned around until north on the map is the same as north in the real world. This usually means having to read the place names upside down.