Fall's cooler weather brings on thermostat battle

I have learned that only two things are necessary to keep one’s wife happy. First, let her think she’s having her own way. And second, let her have it.


– Lyndon Johnson


My wife is giving me thermo-static.

That’s what I call the complaints so common this time of year when we can’t seem to agree on a favored Farhenheit for our shared living space.

It has been suggested this is my fault, and I don’t think I could argue.

You see, I have yet to give up on hot weather. I’m still decked out each weekend like it were July: short pants, golf shirt – a casual boy of summer.

I have not yet surrendered the season, even though Halloween candy is on sale and Christmas decorations are up in stores.

“Is it chilly in here?” I’ll ask innocently, then go over to adjust the thermostat.

“No!” my bride of 20-plus summers will state as calmly for the 10th time as she did for the first. “It’s chilly outside! It’s October! Put on some long pants!”

I smile and go back to whatever I was doing for a few minutes, then I’ll ask, “Hey, a fire would be cozy…”

Anyway, that’s sort of why I have to get up every morning, slip downstairs and slightly turn up the thermostat.

And why she will come down sometime later and begin re-adjusting the temp downward and turning on ceiling fans.

And watching me warily out of the corner of her eye…

And so it goes.

I keep thinking about getting one of those clear plastic boxes to put over the thermostat with a lock like they have in office buildings.

But she probably would get the key, then hide the key, and then I would have to furtively try to adjust it with a straightened-out paper clip like I do at work. Doomed to be discovered.

I’m not sure how it ended up this way.

Like most couples, we are compatible on so many levels, but room temperature is not among them.

This seems to have evolved over the years. I don’t remember it coming up when we were young and carefree. But now?

That’s why I’m sitting in my chair. In front of the football game. Wearing a knit cap and a parka. (And trying to act natural.)

The wife is sitting nearby on the couch and not finding the humor in my performance.

“Want to cuddle?” I ask smiling.

She glances back at me over her shoulder.

It is a cold one.



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