On Freezing…

I have done a most excellent job of organizing the change involved (on my end) in expanding our life to encompass dad. Shaun has had the much more difficult end of packing up his house (while working full-time) and taking care of him until they can get here. Not to mention dealing with both of their feelings.

Unfortunately, I hit one of the glitches in my personality, and froze.

I don’t have time to freeze.

Jane getting stuck: I have to look up the menu online for a new restaurant, or I will panic, and blindly order what the person next to me is having. When I open a menu in a restaurant, The words swim around like little fish Haikus. I consider myself pretty about good at reading? So this makes no sense.

I’d find myself, horrified, shrinking back from a plate of shrimp, clam chowder, crab, or lobster. There might as well be a murderous psychopath glaring up at me from the plate, waving a sharp implement. (I’m allergic to shellfish.)

It’s not important enough to fix, in the scheme of Things That Could Use Fixing (at $150 an hour). I am positive there is no menu trauma in my past, so I found a workaround, and moved on.

Thursday, I was planning Unfamiliar Food menus. 14 years of marriage, and I never noticed Shaun was the planner. Note to self: appreciate Shaun. I give my problem the $150 per hour test: is it worth it? No. Need a work around. I put out an all points bulletin: Jane needs food help!

(I have truly amazing friends, who, if they are fazed by my glitches, never let on.)

Hilary comes to help me sort out menus, the grocery list, and strategize how to get back on track: somehow, in the midst of this, she also manages to clean the bathroom.

I am awestruck.

Forget that she’s an incredible trainer. She can do MENUS and clean a bathroom at the same time. I’m speechless.

The next day, I get half the food in my cart, and stop, paralyzed by what I see on the list.

It made perfect sense when I wrote it down. Now, I have no idea what I was thinking.

I stand there and wonder if I can really ask a clerk:

“On which aisle might I find “Frozen Crap”?

Once I finished giggling, and Daisy texted me back suggesting ‘Frozen Crap’ could possibly be pre-prepared scalloped potatoes, etc.

  1. I knew I had to tell you.
  2. I took it global in my brain: where do I freeze around horses? Or do I?
  3. Where do other people freeze?

Today’s question:

Where do you freeze? Is there any area in which you freeze around horses? What’s your work around?

(Yes, I’m begging: I don’t want to stand alone in the freezer aisle.)

14 thoughts on “On Freezing…

  1. I freeze when it comes to money, which is why I’ entering my 2009 tax data as we speak, even though the returns are due tomorrow. That’s after the two extensions I swore I wouldn’t file this year.

  2. I have a funny menu-related freeze, and so does my dad. When I’m spot on asked for my order in a restaurant… “Wait, I’m supposed to TELL you what I WANT?” Both of us – have to mark our place in the menu (or preferably, pick the top item in a section, because we can remember what section to look for) and read the item off the menu. Cheeseburger? Nope, can’t say it if I’m not reading it off the menu. I can tell you “no mustard, add mayonnaise, cottage cheese instead of fries since I’ll be eating Mom’s fries, and maybe an extra pickle or two.” But the simple “I’d like the cheeseburger, please” is “I’d like the {search menu, find the item, read the description to make sure that’s what I want} cheeseburger {point in case the waitress/waiter is as dumb as I am} please?”

    I freeze just prior to a crisis. If I see someone driving recklessly and not affected, my brain sort of shuts down “what’s going oooon?” But if a light turns red and the truck in front of me stops short and nothing happens when I step on my brakes I will have no problem pulling the hand brake with one hand and keeping the car straight with the other and stopping without leaving my lane during rush hour, and without hitting that truck. (Yes, that’s happened.)

  3. I freeze around a rearing horse. Even a horse that gets a bit light on its front end is equivalent to a good cold front and slows my reactions accordingly. There is trauma in the past (friend/trainer fell off a rearing horse and became a quadriplegic); I refuse to work with a horse that rears. Or even one that makes a habit of threatening to rear. I’m not sure avoidance is a work-around, but it works for me.

    I also freeze when my cat does a particular meow. It’s the “I found a bug and it’s COOL” meow. I don’t like bugs. I especially don’t like bugs my cat feels that she needs to announce to the world instead of eat offhand. Fortunately, I can deal with this if I have a can of Raid. And I have developed a keen ability to comb my apartment looking for said can of Raid while studiously ignoring whatever my cat is looking at, until my liquid courage is in hand.

    Um. Except that one time with the ants. I had to leave and buy extra cans of Raid + some real liquid courage, then come back and deal with the ants. But I don’t like to talk about that.

    There’s trauma here, too. Termites. Don’t ask.


    The termites.


    1. From a Darwinian perspective, I think your comment is exactly why humans are social critters. This is why we have friends: I’ll come do your bugs, can you help me with this weeks menu? 😉

      I had two no-good, horrible, rotten older brothers (that I love), who shoved every manner of creepy crawly, amphibian and reptile down the back of my shirt. First, let me say how we react isn’t a choice, I think it’s hard wired: we either get traumatized or we get familiar. Luckily, I got familiar, and regularly went on creepy-crawly search and rescue missions. On the upside, my brothers were forced to stop sticking stuff down my shirt, because my mom wouldn’t let me adopt everything that crawled out, and made them stop.

      I’m with you on the rearing horses. It’s not a freeze point for me, but it’s on my “do not touch” list. I owned a mare that learned to rear in “training”. (What can I say: young, stupid, bad judge of people.)

  4. I can’t make phone calls except to close friends (very) and family. I will do almost anything to avoid a call, and usually stumble something awful when I must, although I answer the phone just fine, and have delightful conversations. I have not been able to “work around” in my career, and have just forced myself to blunder through. I hate it.

    1. Okay, you just landed yourself on my “Shove the menu at someone else” list. I’ll be on your doorstep with mop and furniture polish. Love to clean.

    2. Math, that’s my thing, too. I’m a therapeutic riding instructor and the other day I was trying to convert “hands” into feet and inches so my students could compare their height to a horse’s. Could I multiply and/or divide by 4? Of course not…

  5. FREEZING! There is a word for it – everyone said it was procrastination, but I knew different. Paperwork does it to me. Taxes are the worst, but anything with a deadline is next to impossible except entries for shows (if I don’t enter the dogs, I don’t get paid, and starvation is not this year’s diet plan). So much easier to just ignore the impending mountain of paper and go back to bed or outside or shopping.

  6. Car repairs, computer repairs. I’m not stupid. I know how to use equipment. But when people talking about fixing rams and roms and gigathingies, I just go all blonde and stare blankly.

    It’s not a proud feeling. But as you say, not worth $150/hour….can we just talk about books, instead? Please?

  7. YES, YES, YES. Boy do I have the same glitch. I too look up menus online ahead of time. I’ll even look up local restaurants before visiting someone, just in case. But I won’t order the same thing as the person next to me, I will just ask the waiter to come back, and then order something with half of the ingredients taken out, and the rest on the side (“So, you’re saying you want a plate, with rice on it, and a spoon?”), rather than actually considering that I might like something the chef has taken the time to put together.

    There are certain people in my life who have become aware of this glitch. My boss, for example, who has known me since law school, said to me once, when we were in the middle of something very critical: “Now Marissa, this is not the time to freeze. You have to fix this. DO NOT FREEZE.” (I didn’t know this little quirk was so obvious? Apparently it shows?)

    It crops up for me sometimes on course. If, for example, something goes awry at the second fence, I have been known to freeze, become stiff as a board, and stare blindly ahead all the way to fences, three, four, and five. My work around? Tucker, of course. He’s also become aware of the glitch. So when I accidentally bury him to the first oxer and he has to crawl over it one foot at a time, he lands and lopes away from it, and you can almost hear him saying, “No big deal mom. See? I don’t care? Cantering along like nothing happened? It’s all good. DO NOT FREEZE.”

  8. I’m with eventer79 – how do you get people to come over and clean? And plan your menu? More importantly, can you also get them to shop??? I hate grocery shopping.

    I try to stay out of the freezer aisle. It’s cooold there.

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