Tuesday, November 10, 2009

The Optimist Goes Against the Pessimist: Who’s Going to Win?

Have I shared the fact with you that my DH, my man in shining armor, my better half, is a pessimist? Notice how I still have nice things to say about him in spite of my telling the truth. That’s just part of my optimist personality. Nevertheless, if you ask him about his outlook, he’ll tell you he’s simply a realist. Sorry sweetie, but I’m not buying it and I don’t think you guys will, either. I’m telling you, his outlook on life is downright cynical. He’s a Gloomy Gus, a naysayer if I’ve seen one.

Case in Point: Halloween night we’re planning to go out for a nice dinner. Hubby says, “We won’t need to buy any candy to pass out.”

I say, “Yes we do. Even if we aren’t here, I’ll set the candy out on the porch, leave the light on, and let the kids take their own.”

Hubby rolls his eyes, and starts laughing. “What are you smoking?” (In my defense, I don’t smoke anything.)

“Why?” I asked.

“Please, if you leave the candy on the porch, the first bunch of kids to come by will take it all, plus our bowl.”

I look at him and frown. “Do you always have to think the worse?”

“Fine,” he says. “Put the candy out and let’s see. Let’s see who’s right.” Then he resorts to using the R word. “I’m just a realist.”

Realist. my butt! When the economy got tight, and I’ll admit it’s tight, but he starts saying he’s gonna lose his job. He looks for it to happen every Friday, even though he hasn’t heard hide nor hair about a layoff about to happen. Last thing he says when he leaves for work every Friday is, “Today’s probably the day.” But it’s not just about his job or just about Fridays. He wakes up every morning and basically says, “I wonder what terrible thing is gonna happen today.”

I call him on it all the time. He’ll come home and I’ll say, “So what terrible thing happened?”

He looks at me and shrugs and answers, “Nothing. Why?”

I roll my eyes and remind him of his premonition. He just looks at me and says, “Yeah, that’s the way I work. I expect the worst to happen and then I’m pleasantly surprised when it doesn’t.”

I’m frowning big time at this point. “But what about all the stress you put yourself under by thinking the sky is falling?”

His reply: “Best to be pleasantly surprised than to be totally blindsided by a piece of sky that you didn’t expect to fall and hit you on your head.”

Right about then I’m ready to scream. I just don’t get it, guys. I don’t get pessimism or pessimistic people. Why get yourself worked up over something that hasn’t and probably won’t happen? I don’t mean bury your head in the sand, but why not think positive until you have something to worry about? Then if something comes up, deal with it.

I mean, not only is there the whole thought process of how you make bad shit happen by believing bad shit will happen, but I can’t stand the thought of walking around in a state of doom and gloom all the time.

Now, hubby claims I take my optimism a bit too far, that I walk around thinking everything is hunky dorie, but hey, positive thinking has done well for me. I’d have quit writing about the first five years if I wasn’t a optimist. Hubby also says that we make a great pair because we balance each other out. I know we make a great pair, but I’m still not sure he needs to be such a wet blanket.

Anyway, back to our dinner and the whole candy on the front porch issue. We go out for our dinner, it was wonderful just as I expected it to be. We pull up into the driveway, we slowly walk up to the front porch and then we stop. I cut him a look, he cuts one back.

Then I raise my chin high and say, “It doesn’t mean anything. Probably some dog took the bowl after the last of the trick-or-treaters took the candy.”

He starts howling with laughter, I storm into the house. Did I learn anything? Not a darn thing. I’ll always be the optimist.

Fine, I’ll admit he might have won this go-round, but I’ll win the next one. I’m positive of it. Just as positive as he is that he won’t win.

So what about you guys? Are you an optimist or a pessimist? Come on, share a little.

I’m in California this week on vacation. Hubby and I are doing the Sideways wine tour. I may or may not have internet connection and be able to respond to your comments, but I will get to them sooner or later. So make sure you leave a response.

And oh, next week starts my contests and giveaway for my new release, Divorced, Desperate and Deceived. So don’t miss out and make sure you come by and post a comment to win a book and other prizes next week/ Oh, I’ll also be guest blogging all over the Internet and I’ll post the links to those sites on my blogs.

Thanks guys and make sure you leave a comment.

Crime Scene Christie


Elle J Rossi said...

Hi Christie,

I hope you're enjoying the wine! Wow! Your man is a major half empty dude. I guess it works for him but I would hate to live like that. (He was right about the Halloween candy though. But that's just typical!)

I'm more like you. I expect god things to happen and when they don't, I find a way to make the situation better rather than dwelling on how bad it is.


TerriOsburn said...

I grew up in a family of pessimists. They are still that way. Always waiting for the other shoe to fall or some catastrophe to happen. And you know what? It does. And I believe it does because they think it into being.

I changed my attitude about five years ago and I'm never looking back. My motto? Don't go looking for trouble. If something happens, I'll deal with it. And then I'll get up the next day with a smile and be happy.

Now, about your DH, I remember your story about when the two of you got married. And I do believe he was the positive one reassuring you that day. So he wins points in my book for that one. :)

I hope that wasn't a bowl you liked. Enjoy the wine!!!

Emmanuelle said...

Hi Christie,

I hope you're having fun in California !
Loved today's post (again).
You're husband really is a character !

I could really identify myself with him. Especially the "today is the day" thing. I'd HATE to be surprised by something aweful so I figure if I try to expect bad things, then they won't hurt as much.

On the other hand I'm a bit like you too. I always expect the best from people. I would absolutely have left the candies on the porch...
I guess I could be you and you'r husband's kid ;-)


MsHellion said...

I gotta side with Hubby. He's a realist. And so am I. *LOL*

I honestly do try to tone it down--but Terri will probably say, "God, if that's her toning it down, I'd hate to see her if she sets it free!" (see pessimist)--but I'm in the boat of "I assume the worst so I can be pleasantly surprised." Perhaps I'm a stress addict. It wouldn't surprise me.

Although I can't embrace the notion of assuming nothing will happen (I don't like hugs and that's just not true), I do agree that thinking negatively only draws more negativity to you--so in a bid to make better things happen, I do try to tamp out my immediate thought and replace it with the more likely outcome: "you'll deal with it, it'll be fine, and you'll have worried for nothing." I mean, it's true. I do deal with it; it does turn out fine; and I did overworry it...but I'm not going to go around, grinning about my troubles like they're no big deal. They are to me.

Keri Ford said...

now you know for next to just dump of pile of candy out on the porch and say to heck with needing a bowl.

Yep, I'm the optimistic one. Mine does that same job thing as yours. Only its not JUST mine. It's him and every other guy he works with. every week there's rumors of a lay off or they're going to get stuck with some crappy boss cause there other is getting fired.

I'm so sick of hearing it. I've started calling it out and ending the conversation with, "yeah you did all that worrying last week and it didn't happen."

Brandy said...

I'm a mix, or balance between the two. I want things to turn out well, but am not really surprised when they don't. Does that make sense?

Estella said...

I am ever the optimist. You have to thin k positive to have positive things happen.

catslady said...

I too grew up in a house full of pessimists. It's hard to change what you've know for such a long time but I do try. Our phone could never ring without an "ohmy" - can you imagine that nowadays? I swear I've spent half my life waiting up for people just in case something has happened. I have a friend who never waits up because she says she would at least be well rested if something does happen lol. I want to be like that.

dlsimon said...

I am an optimist married to an "nearly reformed" pessimist. I have worked on him for 24 years but he isn't done yet. I am a patient optimist.

As for the Halloween candy, I bet one of your nice neighbors picked up the empty bowl to save it for you!

Christie Craig said...

Hi Elle,

Just got back from a wonderful dinner and some Sonoma wine. I'm listening the waves as I answer my email. Ahh, good times.

And hubby is a half empty guy, but thankfully he listens to me about the big stuff.

We are having a great vacation. And yes, he was right about the candy. I gave him that one. LOL.

Thanks so much for stopping in.


Christie Craig said...

Hi Terri,

Okay...DH read my blog and he loved your comment. He's a keeper for sure. A pessimist most of the time, but a keeper for sure.

Thanks for stopping by.


Christie Craig said...


A bit of both is good thing. Thanks for stopping in.

Oh, your comment on facebook about DD&Deceived being a bit like Bird on the Wire is right on target. I even rented the movie to get a feel for the pacing. I wanted that fast pace, on the run feel.

You are very intuitive.


Christie Craig said...

You make it sound like a good thing. Hmm, maybe you have a bit of an optimist in your after all. LOL.

And I do the whole, "You'll deal with it" thoughts all the time.

Thanks for stopping in.


Christie Craig said...


I think men have a tendency to be more "realist."

And yes, I remind my hubby that he thought the same thing last week. He always says, "And that's why I think it'll happen this week."

But I guess we gotta understand a little that it's there job to fret and our job to stop them from fretting too much. LOL.

Thanks so much for stopping in.


Christie Craig said...


It makes sense. Even an optimist, has her doubts every now and then. Like me worrying about my books doing well when they go out into the world.

Ahh, but it's the ultimate belief that all will work out that keeps me going.

Thanks for stopping in.


Christie Craig said...


Yup, I'm with you. I really do think positive thoughts attract positive actions, and positive actions attract positive outcomes.

Thanks for dropping by.


Christie Craig said...


That's so funny, because that is my hubby's belief too. I always say, if the world was ending, hubby would say, "Well, let's get a good night's sleep so we can deal with it."

Thanks for stopping in.


Christie Craig said...


I like how you think. Maybe I should got check with the neighbors. Hmm...you'll have to tell me how you retrained hubby.

Thanks for popping in.


Jenyfer Matthews said...

I guess I'm a realist too. I like to look a the bright side of things and assume that things will work out for the best, but I NEVER would have left a bowl of candy out on the porch :)