Life: A Jigsaw Piece of the Action

image via cookiebabe on Etsy

The world is divided into two different kinds of people: people who do jigsaws and people who don’t.

I am a jigsaw person. I see no problem in taking up precious domestic real estate with a 1500 piece picture of the pubs of 1970s England or cats dressed up as 1950s movie stars. As far as I’m concerned, we can all eat out off our laps until that last piece is in. And when I lie in bed in the morning? Well, I can hear the jigsaw calling me like a cardboard temptress. Once seated before it, you’d think I’d be able to just get up and move away any time I wanted to, right? I mean, I’m a grown woman with a free will and two working legs and hungry children to tend to, right? Wrong, people.There’s always that “just one last piece” to find and… “My, is that the time? Can it really be September already?”

image via Cookiebabe on Etsy

My partner is not a jigsaw person. God knows he tries. He will sit next to me and try to arrange 32 pieces of sky but I can see his heart is not in it. He’ll rummage through the box for edge pieces with the merest flicker of enthusiasm but the thrill of the chase is lost on him. Once I even let him put that last piece of the puzzle in (it’s the romantic equivalent of giving the chocolate bit at the end of your Cornetto) but I could see he felt nothing.

Still, it’s lucky that my partner is not a jigsaw person. I mean, someone has to step away from the puzzle to go out and earn some money to buy new jigsaws and/or feed the children.

In any case, as any avid jigsawer can tell you, it’s far better having a non-jigsaw partner helping you out than a large team of enthusiastic children ‘helpers’. That ‘help’ generally involves anything from messing up careful colour sorting, to scattering the pieces like confetti every time they approach the jigsaw table or even (in one child’s case) hiding random pieces in my shoes. It’s that kind of behaviour that pretty much guarantees I’ll tell embarrassing stories at said child’s 21st in retribution. Harsh, but fair.

Listen, I should probably make a larger philosophical point here about the how world needs people like me. It’s the jigsawers of life that tirelessly work towards a cure for cancer or manage to reassemble the Dyson vacuum cleaner after the filters have been cleaned. Yes, I *should* make that philosophical point but listen, I can’t hang around any longer. I’ve got a 2000 piece picture of Bavaria’s Neuschwanstein Castle to finish. Tschüss!

The formerly fashionable NDM had three children and discovered that brown is the new black the hard way. The force behind the once-was-blog Not Drowning, Mothering, she now very occasionally writes for the sometimes-blog The NDM. In her spare time, she enjoys baking cakes, cyber-hassling advertising executives and collecting photos of unusual objects made out of paperclips. She is planning to print out this post and turn it into a jigsaw puzzle. Just because. 




  • Kitty Boo Boo

    Most excellent. I too am a jigsaw person. Unfortunately just bought a stack if cheap ones. The images are super fuzzy! Oh my tired eyes. I have sworn off Op Shop dogs playing cards because there is nothing more damaging to a jigsaw persons soul than a jigsaw with a missing dog face smoking a cigar.

    • The NDM

      That there is the stuff of nightmares.

  • Mandy Brown

    Just finished my second 1000 piece for the summer. Two in the one box from one of those $5 book shops; at $10, a bargain! I salve my Presbyterian work ethic conscience by only buying reproductions of pre-Raphealite paintings, so it’s almost as good as actually painting them… I inherited the bug from my parents, both of whom understood the thrill of finding the right piece and putting it in (so to speak). If only life was that simple and satisfying, sigh.