Tuesday, July 25, 2006

Pitching In

In the division of household labor, I will readily admit that my husband has gotten the short end of the stick. I tend to handle the things from which I am least likely to get dirty, encounter anything icky, or sweat. I don't think he realized this at first, but he is catching on. For instance, last night:

The dog ate something. Those are never a good four words. Our poor pup ended up leaving us a present of her half digested dinner. On our beige carpet. We both jumped up. I went to locate the Bissel Handheld Carpet Shampooer thingie. My husband watched me essentially disappear from the room, and resigned himself to getting the paper towels.

In my defense, finding the Bissel was hard. We just moved, and the contraption, its cord, and the cleaning solution were all in different parts of the house. So technically, I had the more labor intensive part of the job, but managed to avoid having to scoop up vomit quite nicely.

This is fairly usual for us. I advised him long ago that any instructions from our vet involving reaching into bodily cavities would fall under his responsibility. MY responsibility is to brush the dog, tell her she is cute, play with her, and buy her all the necessary accessories (I am trying to convince my husband that the dog needs a Louis Vuitton collar and leash. So far he is not convinced).

Likewise, anything which involves cleaning deposits from said bodily cavities is also very much in Man Domain. In other words, he and my son are the ones tasked with scooping poop out of the backyard. I will bag excrement when I'm taking her for a walk (particularly when I have a new, fresh pack of designer poop baggies from PetSmart), but that is the limit of my contribution.

I think this is only fair. I mean, I scrub toilets (with yellow rubber gloves, and yes, I did buy a pretty neat plastic cleaning organization kit) and I do the laundry (did you know Restoration Hardware makes laundry detergent!? I must investigate). I think these are important tasks. No one wants a dirty toilet, and no one wants dirty underwear. The fact that the dirt from these two tasks never comes into contact with my person is a minor fact.

He is probably wondering if I will change diapers when we have an infant. Of course I will. Human infant messes are very rarely the result of eating icky things like bugs. Babies I can handle. Searching for ticks on the dog - I really most certainly cannot.

Nevertheless, I feel sympathy for my husband. I'm sure he didn't realize he was signing up for a lifetime of applying anti tarter gel to the dog's teeth with his bare hand when he met me. But one must make sacrifices for love. I think when one considers the sacrifices of such men as Samson (Delilah) or Romeo (Juliet), my husband is making out pretty well.

I bet Juliet never scrubbed a toilet a day in her short life.

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