A Wrench By Any Other Name…

As Sam was replacing a hanging light fixture, he needed my help as a gopher. I’ll admit, I think gophers are disgusting creatures that ruin gardens and get hit by cars like the worthless animals they are (I mean, just watch where you’re going when you cross the road, dude) so I wasn’t keen to play the role. But as he was up on the ladder doing The Important Junk (which included dealing with electrical wires, which freaks me out) I consented to the lesser role of “gopher.”

At one point, he asked me for a wrench. “What kind of wrench?” I asked, quite proud of myself I even knew there was more than one type. Tessa Toolbox, I am not. “Oh, just any kind,” he said with a shrug. No problem, I can handle that. I come back with…

“No.” He shakes his head and looks at me with pity. “Not that wrench.”

“Dude, you just told me any kind would be fine. What are you, a liar?”

He then looked like he was about to climb down the ladder and I knew I’d done something wrong because if he came down from the ladder he wouldn’t go back up and we really needed that stupid light down. “Okay, okay. What kind of wrench?”

“The only other kind of wrench in the tool box.”

Simple, right? Hard to bring the wrong kind of wrench when there’s only one to choose from. World’s Easiest Multiple Choice Quiz. I go into the box and bring out…

“Here!” I hand it to him with glee.

He stares at it in his hand as if I’d given him a big steaming diaper. “What is this?”

I point. “That’s a wrench. A…something wrench. Isn’t it?”

“Socket wrench, yes.” He stares at it more, like it might bite him, or start dripping.

“You said bring the only other wrench. That’s the only other wrench.”

“I didn’t mean this wrench.”

At this point, I was less concerned about the light fixture and more concerned about being right. Which, I’d like to remind you all, I WAS. “You told me it was the only one left, and I brought the only one left. You said any wrench would do. So use it.”

‘This won’t work.”

“Do I at least get points for knowing that was a wrench?”

He shrugged and set the socket wrench down. “Sure. Your reward is giving me a massage.”

“That’s not how rewards work,” I pointed out, though I’m pretty sure he knew that already and was attempting to game the system. Cheater.

“Just go get me a wrench.”

At this point, I think my ears were starting to turn a delightful shade of Not Gopher Red. “You go find The Wrench that you apparently need, since I’m too stupid to know what you’re talking about.”

He came back with this…

THAT’S NOT A WRENCH! “Those are pliers!” I yelled, then regretted it as Ruth woke up and came out to see why mommy and daddy were sounding like a Teen Mom marathon: Amber & Gary recap. After apologizing and sending her back to bed, we discussed it like rational adults in a level-headed manner.

Yeah, okay…I totally yelled again. But this time I remembered to stuff a towel under Ruth’s door first so she didn’t hear me. Neener.

He pointed out that they were sort of a hybrid of a wrench and a plier. I pointed out that there was no section of Home Depot for Wrenchiers or Pliches. You get a wrench, or you get a pair of pliers. Those were pliers.

He then shrugged, like this was no big deal and he hadn’t attempted to toss my entire belief system of right and wrong, wrench and pliers into a complete tailspin. But at least the light fixture was complete, and I didn’t have to touch any wires. That’s the important part, right?

Men. When it comes to tools, they are such tools.


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