Friday, January 8, 2010


I'm not quite sure who first penned the phrase that men are from Mars and women from Venus. I'm sure it was long ago, and I'm sure that whoever it was happened to be an astute observer of human behavior. Men and women are certainly different. In fact, it is mind boggling sometimes that all that separates us from one another is a single chromosome.

I spent the better part of the morning one day this week performing the most hated of all household chores. Cleaning the walls and the baseboards. I only got about 2/3 of the downstairs done, but got the entire banister done as well. It took hours, used up 3 entire Magic Erasers and more than a few fingernails were sacrificed for the cause. The walls and the baseboards look good to me now, at least as good as they can. I need to paint them, really. Getting and keeping them clean when they are only covered with flat paint is next to impossible.

You can imagine my surprise (okay, so I know you won't be surprised....but humor me a little) when my dear husband arrived home from work that evening and didn't notice. He didn't notice that the walls were again the off-white color they were intended to be, no longer streaked with marker, crayon and fingerprints. He didn't notice that the baseboards were white again, no longer covered with scuffs and layers of goo. He didn't notice.

Why didn't he notice, you might ask? Most likely because it had never occurred to him that they were dirty in the first place. And why hadn't it occurred to him? One reason, a simple one really. He's a guy. And guys don't care. Never noticed that it was dirty, and he's not going to notice that it's clean.

I suppose that I shouldn't mind all that much. It would be far more exhausting to live with a man if he did actually notice every stray mark on the walls, every dust bunny tucked under a cabinet, the second the toilet went from clean to gross. I notice these things, sure. But do I get to them instantly? Of course not. There is no way that I could keep this house spotless all the time, and the last thing I need is to have someone else point that out constantly. Unless that someone else is willing to help, that is. And clearly, such is not the case in my house.

When I wonder aloud why I bother cleaning, he smirks. He knows as well as I do that I clean for one reason - my sanity. I need to feel like I am somewhat capable of keeping on top of the chaos. I need to occasionally feel like I could actually eat off my floor if given no other option. And yes, I need to clean the baseboards. Even if the only person who ever notices is me.

I guarantee Venus is a much cleaner place than Mars.

No comments:

Post a Comment

Some of My Most Popular Posts