At any given time around my castle there may be a couple of half-finished jobs or tasks I'm going to get around to one day.
For instance, I started building a little garden shed round the back of the garage a month or so ago but ran out of nails before I got to sort the door out. Then there's the last little bit of the deck, which needs painting — that little bit round the side we don't use which the previous owners put on probably because there was nothing good on the telly the day they did it.
Naturally, there's also a pile of gardening debris under the tree in the far corner I forgot last time I took the trailer to the dump. I'm going to get around to shifting it, obviously. As I am with these and the other little bits and bobs around the house I've started and not finished or have always promised to get to.
Actually, I didn't realise there were as many half-finished little jobs here as there were, but last weekend Mrs P decided action was required to get them all sorted, especially as we had visitors coming.
My suggestion she was over-reacting looked decidedly, well, pathetic as we wandered round the homestead, the tally slowly mounting. The "couple" of jobs I had on my schedule was a woeful underestimation — right up there with my estimate of the number of nails I thought I'd need to finish the garden shed round the back of the garage.
Anyway, I decided to take control of the situation and promised my lady I'd get stuck in and finish some stuff off. Actually we agreed that if I got stuck in and finished some stuff off she'd make me a nice lunch — which basically meant I needed to get it done or I would be deprived of food.
So, with the possibility of an enforced diet in my mind, I set off for Bunnings.
Big mistake. Now, I don't know whether it's just me or all men — I suspect the latter— but when I get into a place like that, time and all the cares of the world just drift away into insignificance.
Like-minded blokes amble around the power tools discussing rpm and torque, others drift off into the far aisles looking at plumbing fittings they know nothing about or will ever use.
Some stand for ages in front of the nails, nuts and bolts determined not to ask for help lest their manhood is compromised....
Gulp. It's an emotional place.
But it's also a happy place, full of fulfilment. And later, as I take my purchases to the car, I'm as happy as I was when I discovered Australians really do cheat at cricket and it is possible to argue that chocolate-covered almonds are, in fact, good for you.
Upon arriving home I found Mrs P waiting for me on the partly unpainted deck with a coffee and lunch.
Life could not be any better, I thought as I sat down. A beautiful and loving wife, a visit to Bunnings for some blokeship and now a hearty lunch. Bliss.
Unfortunately, I hadn't looked properly at the "lunch" until I sat down. A half-full cup of coffee, half a filled roll and half an apple? In fact, half my normal consumption.
Then it dawned on me a point was being made.
Apparently I'd spent so much time at Bunnings I was unlikely to have enough left to tackle those half-finished little jobs I had planned to complete.
So Mrs P, in a very clever way, was letting me know there are consequences for distractions.
Thankfully, she assured me I could certainly have the other half of my lunch.
When she got round to it.
■Kevin Page is a teller of tall tales with a firm belief too much serious news gives you frown lines. Feel free to share stories to firstname.lastname@example.org.