Friday, January 21, 2011


I came in from shovelling the other day, soaked to the skin because the snow was wet. I hung my hat up on a nail on a beam that goes across the area where we take our shoes off. I don't normally hang things up here - perhaps this is why it all went down the way it did. This area is also pretty central to the house - we pass through it all the time, to go from living room to kitchen and back again, to go to the basement, to go outside. I hung the hat up on the nail to dry, then promptly forgot about it.

For days afterward I was wondering where my hat had gotten off to. I have other hats, so it wasn't urgent. But then I wanted to wear that particular one - for reasons too mundane to go into even on one's own personal blog - and I searched the house up and down for it. Standing in the area where we take our shoes off, I queried my housemates - "Have you seen my hat?" No-one had.

"Huh," I said. "It's a mystery."

Mum said, "Do you mean this hat?" She pointed above my head. There on the nail in the beam above my head, was the very hat I'd been puzzling over.

"Well, mystery solved!" I said.

That got me thinking about obvious. It was so obvious! Yet I didn't even see it. What else is obvious?

Here's one - and even thinking about writing about it got me nervous, despite the anonymity of my confession - something else obvious is when you like someone. (Which, hey, big surprise, I do.) When you've got a crush so big you think, "OK, this must  be so obvious. Surely when he looks me in the eye he must SEE what I'm feeling. Is my face really that impermeable? Because, it really doesn't feel like it." Yet - nothing changes. You're able to pretend you don't feel what you feel. You don't want to be obvious.

To be obvious is to be vulnerable. To be in the way, to put your feelings out there where someone can see them. To hang them on the nail on the beam in the middle of the house. And yet - maybe you'd do that and still no-one would pay attention. After all, it's possible with a hat.

Blog Archive