Saturday, January 29, 2005

Peanut Butter & Pickle Sandwiches

Men and housekeeping go together about as well as peanut butter and pickles.

Okay, so some of you are saying, "hey, I like peanut butter and pickle sandwiches." And, to that I say, "gross!" But, it proves my point that there are probably some men who like housekeeping too.

My husband isn't one of them. He'll be the first to admit it. After he tells you about all the other stuff he does around the house, like the yard, and the gutters, and the electrical repairs....well, you get the picture.

I agree, he's a lot of help when it comes to yard work and cleaning gutters, but when it comes to cooking and cleaning toilets, I'm on my own.

Which makes his grumbling about the other men in his office priceless. His exact words were, "If all guys act like the guys do at work then all men are f***ing worthless!"

I almost fell out of my chair laughing so hard. I hurried for pen and paper so I wouldn't miss the best single opportunity I would ever have to hear him disparage his "own kind."

My husband works in an all-male office. Very rare these days, but it's true. The Business Manager is female, but she isn't in the office full-time, preferring to work from home, so the six guys are on their own.

My husband complains that these guys won't do anything to clean up after themselves or each other unless it absolutely needs to be done. And that's only after they've let it go until howls of complaints fill the air.

According to my husband, they won't replace toilet paper or paper towels or even let anyone know when something has run out; like the toilet paper or paper towels!

My husband is a little spoiled in this area because at home I buy those two items in bulk. We are NEVER without a roll of toilet paper or paper towels. To me, these two are the "must have" items within reach at all times. Every bathroom in my house has a constant supply. I vigilantly track the inventory, always replenishing before supplies run out. To my husband we have a toilet paper fairy that magically replaces rolls after he uses them. But, all that fades in comparison to the time he spends at work.

He has to live in the real world at work. In their world, no one tracks inventory or replaces supplies before they are gone. They don't have wives or mommies to look after them. They're lucky if someone even mentions that they're out of TP.

However, I'm seeing a good side to this torture he endures every day. It's helping him to see how much responsibility there is in keeping a home running smoothly.

Last week, they ordered lunch into the office and had no supplies to eat with. My husband, ever diligent, went shopping for plastic ware and paper plates while everyone else sat in the office watching their food get cold and waiting.

My husband told me that he bought two sets of everything and kept one in his office in case they ever run out again. I asked him, "What does that teach anyone?"

He looked at me blankly and said, "Well, we'll have stuff when they think we've run out."

I chuckled and said slowly, "You're teaching them that you'll be there to provide for them so they don't have to worry about it."

Blank look.

"Just like I do for you."

Understanding dawned slowly on my dear husband's face. Although, he wasn't as amused as I.

With stubborn defiance, he said, "Well, I'll just keep the supplies for myself and when they run out I won't give them any."

I didn't say a word. I only murmured and nodded my head in a wifely kind of way. Inside I was thinking, "Oh sure, let me try that theory out here at home."

I wonder if he would be as supportive of that method of teaching if I used it by only washing my clothes and not his? Would he be standing in the closet, naked as the day he was born, nodding understandingly at the lesson he was just taught?

Yeah, right. And one day I'll enjoy a nice peanut butter and pickle sandwich.


Queen Jaw Jaw said...

Girl...great blog. And you are not alone. If all the women in world decided to wash their clothes only, we would have a bunch of naked men standing in closets going, "ah..where's my clean clothes? There's no clothes in here...somebody stole my clothes...hun! Hun! Somebody stole my clothes!" Hm...not a bad visual either...


Natalie said...

Welcome to wonderful world of blogging!! Good Job, Vicki!

Anonymous said...


This post had me laughing in empathy. When I grew up I NEVER saw my father lift a finger in housework, but he did a lot in the yard, etc. Imagine my surprise when I learned that when he was in university he did all the cleaning and his roommate did nothing. Once he went away for a few days and came back to a sink full of dirty dishes. He decided to let them sit so his roommate could wash them, but relented when they sprouted mould. I first saw my father help a bit in the house when he was about sixty, so maybe there's hope for the future.


Anonymous said...

Vicki, no wonder the office manager works from home.
Do you blame her?

Dotsie Bregel

Anonymous said...

you start out with peanut butter sandwiches and then rant in your entire article about men and toilet sorry for your husband when it comes to talking. Can you stay on one subject? KW

Vicki M. Taylor said...

That's the thing about my blog, it's about various topics and musings, depending on what I'm thinking about at that time. My husband and I don't have any trouble communicating. He understands me completely.