Why are blokes still considered heroes if they pick up the vacuum cleaner and know how to use it?
Why are blokes still considered heroes if they pick up the vacuum cleaner and know how to use it? AlexanderPokusay

LIFE AS I KNOW IT: Time to clean up our domestic act

I OVERHEARD a quote by the very funny British comedian Jo Brand about housework recently. "How do you know if it's time to wash the dishes and clean your house? Look inside your pants. If you find a penis in there, it's not time."

While choking on colliding sips of tea and guffaws, the amusement of hearing something so entrenched in attitude, dissected in a hilarious put-down like that was way too satisfying to not follow through with some banter about the divisive topic of housework.

But for once I don't have much to add on this one as it would be hypocritical to use my situation as the domestic example Jo was referring to. As it turns out, I don't have a penis but given my approach to housework, I should.

At our place the person Jo was mocking in her one-liner does his fair share on the domestic front which is 'fair' because we both work full-time and prefer to spend our weekends in a reclining position, sometimes holding newspapers, other times vessels of Barossa grape juice.

We did try a professional cleaner once or twice, but it was too messy for even them to deal with, and the number of times we required their services meant we ended up working for them.

So when the asthma readings become too unbearable (neither of us suffer from it but it can be induced by one's surroundings it turns out), it's time for him to get out the vacuum out because I hate that dusty, noisy thing.

While I appreciate the removal of the tumbleweeds of dirt and dog hair from the walkways each week, the too hard to reach nooks and crannies continue to breed their own eco systems. This is because their removal requires dragging furniture from its foundations and getting down on all fours. That picture of domestic fantasy is where I come into it, but cleaning like that doesn't happen often but when it does, it's reminiscent of the bathroom scene from Mommie Dearest.

Dealing with the second smallest room in the house at our place can occur at anytime, but usually between the hours of 8pm and midnight when the day's woes won't wash down the plughole because the black plague prevents them from doing so. Then you have no choice but to literally get up the Gumption and get stuck in.

On the flipside arriving home from work at dinner time-ish each night also relieves me of any ongoing duty over the gas burner, a domestic debt of which I try to repay while on on holidays but the mess left behind is not worth it apparently.

Archaeological digs in the fridge to remove calcified items are also not my strong point as I'm reminded by David Attenborough often, usually while pointing what used to be a carrot at me.

Washing clothes is self-serve and sexist as far as looking after our own dirty laundry is concerned and ironing is almost non-existant thanks to the crumpled look never going out of fashion (at our place at least).

Otherwise it's the traditional mowing and garbage for him, fleeting but thorough surface cleaning for me.

But what seems fair to me, is amazing to many (what do you mean he cooks and vacuums?) and despite all our foul-proof systems set in place by osmosis, the place generally remains on the messy side (go figure) and the dog refuses to chip in.

So this means it will stay that way, at least until we both die from an asthma attack or the black plague, and the house is sold from under our reclining, calcifying bodies.

Until that dust settles, it's vacuums and Gumption-charged scourers at 10 paces... but only when we feel like it.



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