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In My Opinion

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Trouble between the spreadsheets

By Tracy Lee Curtis
Tracy Lee Curtis
Tracy Lee Curtis is a humorist, writer and speaker. She writes family humor for the Charlotte Observer. Her column appears each Sunday.

So … interesting little story this week that has now gone viral. A woman's fed-up husband sent her an Excel spreadsheet, recording every time she shot down his attempts to have intimate relations over the last seven weeks, including her verbatim excuses.

Well, that’s one way for a man to prove he’s listening. And that he’s mastered Microsoft Office. I’m not sure it’s going to inspire her to want to cha-cha anytime soon. But at least she knows who to go to if she needs to create a pie chart.

The spreadsheet had three columns: “Date” – which listed the date of the request. “Sex?” – which revealed the outcomes of either “Yes” or “No.” And “Excuse” – which detailed her verbal responses.

Responses, of which one was, “I’m watching the show.” Totally get that. He tried to minimize that excuse with a side note of “(”Friends” re-run),” but I totally get that too. Especially if it was the one where Ross and Rachel get married in Vegas and don’t remember it. I love that one.

The spreadsheet says some of the excuses were “non-verbal.” Which makes me wonder if the advance was non-verbal too. Which to be fair to her, could have simply been a miscommunication. Sort of like when a guy in a bar thinks a girl is looking at him, when really there’s just a clock over his head.

And like most data, this chart is incomplete and not the whole picture. Definitely needs more columns and more critical information, like a column called “Request,” specifying what the invitation was exactly. What did he say? And did he use a funny accent?

Also, it needs a column of what preceded the request, like a column called “Incentive,” that would describe things like “Took her to dinner.” “Gave her flowers.” “Unloaded the dishwasher.” Stuff like that.

I was a little disappointed he emailed it to her, while she was on her way to the airport for a 10-day business trip. He should have stuck it on the bulletin board in the kitchen for her to see before she left. And not deny her the opportunity to tack it to his forehead on the way out the door. Just sayin’.

And I prefer Google docs, because anyone you share the document with is able to edit it. So like on July 11th where her excuse was “I’m too tired,” she could edit that to include “because I had to make dinner, load the dishwasher, and pull the first 30 pages of my new book, “Chart This!” out of your forehead.”

But what do I know, I don’t use Excel. The way to keep track of these things is to count the number of children you have. Speaking of which, did you see the one where Phoebe gave birth to triplets? I love that one.

tcurtis@charlotteobserver.com

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