I was unloading the dishwasher with my son the other day.
Ok, I’ll be honest. I was ‘encouraging’ him to unload it.
And somewhere in the midst of the cheery disagreement about whose turn it was to do it, he told me about the ‘Uno reverse’ meme.
The idea is that you carry a ‘reverse’ card from the Uno game in your pocket and then, when someone asks you to do something you don’t want to do or says something you want to turn back on them, you produce it.
Apparently there’s a similar one involving a Monopoly ‘get out of jail free’ card. One of his friends has even been known to carry an ‘advance to Mayfair’ card which seems to work for him in all sorts of situations. (I guess he must own Mayfair, since it wouldn’t make sense if someone else had a hotel on it…)
Anyway, as it happened my son didn’t have a reverse card handy (ha!), so he unloaded the dishwasher anyway – but the conversation got me thinking.
I started wondering what it would be like if there were other types of cards we could carry and ‘play’ in real life. Cards that could act as shorthand for all sorts of things that can be tricky to say directly – particularly when we’re not feeling at our best. For example:
- I really like talking with you, but right now I need to be quiet and not talk with anybody
- I’m hungry and I need to eat something right away (before I start saying all sorts of things I’ll regret)
- Do you have a spare hug?
- I really appreciate the invitation and I don’t want to cause offence by saying no – but no
- If I happen to cry, please don’t take it personally – it’s just that kind of a day
- Talking about big important stuff is unlikely to go well right now – please could we schedule it for another time?
I wonder if such cards exist. Do you know?
If not, I’m thinking I might make some…