Thursday, March 19, 2009

I'm the nice one, dammit

Work is kicking my butt lately. So is microwaving sponges. You know what else has been keeping me busy? Setting out to prove that when you’re in a relationship, it’s more stressful to be the neat one than the sloppy one.

Apparently Suzanne Britt is the only person who’s tackled this topic, and her conclusions suck. Neat people are not lazier and meaner than sloppy people. I know that because I’m a neat person, and I am nice, reasonable and hardworking. And attractive. All I ask is that:

a) when I lay my head on my pillow at night, my kitchen counters be crumb-free
b) there be no garbage pail overflow
c) wet towels not be left on the floor
d) seasonal décor be banished to the basement in a timely manner
e) canned goods be alphabetized and sorted according to height
f) the clothes in the closet face the same way

Kidding! (About e.)

Now that you know all about me, let me tell you about how I suffer:

Me, at 9:00 p.m.: “Remember it’s garbage night, sweetie? I love you.”

Chuck: “I’ll do it.”

Me, at 9:45 p.m. “It’s getting late. Honey.” (Note the small increase in my stress level as the neat person who’d like to go to bed and know that all rubbish has been allocated to its rightful spot.)

Chuck: “Yup.”

Me, at 10 p.m.: “Shall I take out the garbage?” (Note the attempt of the neat person to remedy the situation. Also note that the neat person is starting to get pissed off.)

Chuck: “Relax.”

Me, at 10:01 p.m.: "You lazy, rotten piece of shit. I ask you to do one simple thing and you won't. What is wrong with you? Why won't you get up and just take out the garbage?"

Chuck:"Relax."

Let’s pause here for the introduction of some crucial information: If I ask Chuck more than three times to do something, he actually starts adding hours to the ETC (estimated time of completion) of the task. Which means that if he was going to take out the trash at 10:15, he’s now going to wait until 11:15 p.m. just to make me suffer.

You think I’m kidding? There have been entire months where that man has pushed the garbage to the curb at 1 a.m. just to prove his point. Do you have any idea what it’s like to try to go to sleep knowing that your husband is sitting on the couch mindlessly dropping crumbs on the floor, not taking out the garbage just to mentally torture you? You: The nice neat person, the doer, the one who gets things done!

And do you know that after he’s done—finally!—taking out the garbage, he throws his pants on the floor—even though the laundry basket is sitting right next to it—before he climbs into bed? Then he has the nerve to immediately fall asleep.

Quick recap? Case study #1: Garbage night. Me: Ire-incited insomnia. Chuck: Unperturbed slumber.

This is my first installment of “The Woes of the Well-kept.” Tune in next time for Case Study #2: "Still pissed about Garbage night."

28 comments:

Mary Anna said...

Please don't ever, ever, EVER come to my home!

Mary Anna said...

Oh, and FIRST!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

(Never sure why people brag and expect the internets to provide them with obligatory high-fives, but I shall too.)

Maggie Madison said...

OK. Are you somehow me? Seriously, if they would just finish the task when we first ask then we wouldn't have to become, (gasp!) NAGS!
BTW I can add to your list: all laundry sorted in the basement, no floor crumbs, and chip bags TIGHTLY closed!

Keely said...

I've just learned to ask Paul a week earlier than I would have asked a normal person. I do NOT, in any way, qualify as a 'neat' person, but comparatively speaking, I'm the neat one.

Seriously, if I even see the bathroom so much as THINKING about getting dirty, I ask him to clean it. Then a week later, when he does, it's actually relevant.

Suzi said...

I don't think my husband knows where the garbage can is, let alone that it needs to go to the street on Sunday night. He will walk right by the trash can with stuff on his plate and let me back track to empty the contents of his plate. Hmmmm.......

Shelli (wishes she was) Mrs. Burchett;) said...

OMG...you are married to my 18 year old son, arent you?!?!?!?!

FoN said...

We're both slobs. And therefore, sleep like babies.

Eudae-Mamia said...

I guess we should all be happy he puts on pants before he takes the garbage to the curb?

Hubs has been known to do it in his boxers :-).

And I'm totally with you on all the clothes hanging the same way - by color of course (I'm not joking).

Joanie said...

Nope. She's married to my 18 year old daughter.

Seeker said...

Well I guess I have living proof that opposites attract....too funny girl...

mo.stoneskin said...

Canned goods SHOULD be alphabetized dammit!

harrietv said...

I'm not neat -- I just do what's convenient. For nearly thirty years my husband took out the garbage. He did it regularly, his way, which included consolidating stuff and reusing bags.

Then he broke his hip. It's been my job ever since. I think I should have been doing it all along. But I had to make him responsible for something.

Alabama Redhead said...

Why is it so freaking genetically impossible for them to put their man panties in the freakin' laundry basket?? WTF?!?!

Anne said...

My husband can't find the laundry hamper either. Somehow he can't see something sitting right in front of his face. My husband has learned it is easier to do something when I first ask since otherwise, I will just keep asking.

Rachel said...

I think Chuck has a twin he was seperated from at birth. And I'm married to him. And I might be your twin who you were seperated from at birth. Huh?

And Keely? Your husband cleans the bathroom???

kyooty said...

I think i'm very much like Chuck on this one. Sorry

GreenJello said...

Have you told him that it sends you into a freakout session when he doesn't take the garbage out?

C.B. Jones said...

Neatness is overrated.

*throws soda can over his shoulder*

Kelly said...

today was garbage day. the garbage went out at 7am this morning. my husband NEVER puts it out the night before. oh, and the kitchen counters... yeah, you'd hate living in my house! LOL!

blueviolet said...

I about died when I read your 10:01 pm response. You are hilarious!

Stacy (the Random Cool Chick) said...

ROTFLMAO!!!! We're too much alike it's scary...except that you don't alphabetize your canned goods. ;)

My hubby can't seem to find the laundry hamper, either - he piles his clothes on his side of the bed...I leave them there (luckily his side of the bed is closest to the wall, so I don't have to look at the pile) and will finally, when he needs something clean, put the whole pile in the hamper. That's one of the reasons why I do all his laundry by itself - and Princess Nagger's and mine together... ;)

HumorSmith said...

Yeah. It's a well known fact men hate being told to do anything. Except, "Let's have sex now!" That one we respond to immediately.

HoodChick said...

My husband bitches when the trash is too full. Hello - taking it out is your job. And god forbid he actually wipe off the counter after making a sandwich.

Stacy said...

My husband is just like you. He has to have the toliet paper the right way, everything in it's place. When I want to annoy the hell out of him I put all the pictures crooked, move magazines so they are not neat, etc. Then I tell him I dusted. He realizes when there is an inch of dust on everything, that I just did all that to piss him off.

Mrs. V said...

I'm the Oscar to my husband's Felix. The poor man. I feel for him.

Leanne said...

Yep. We're you. I get called the 'neat freak' at my house. But now? I take the garbage out myself and sulk all night about it...and no one notices. Its sad.

Frogs in my formula said...

Aww, Tired Mama, that's so sad!

Jenners said...

I hate to tell you this but I'm the one that doesn't quite "get a move on" when asked to do something. Drives my husband crazy!!!!! Perhaps we should switch spouses -- sign up for Wife Swap or something???? Then we could all be happy.

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