The joys of housework

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Phyllis Diller once said, “Cleaning your house while your kids are still growing is like shoveling the walk before it stops snowing.”
Now that we have been in the senior citizen ranks I get a guilty feeling when my friends tell me their wife has a cleaning lady, or more formally, “We subscribe to a domestic service.” Since I have been helping the betterhalf with the household chores of regular vacuuming and the occasional taking the recycling box and trash bin to our curbside, I have become more conscious of housecleaning and the duties entailed.
I approached the betterhalf about having such a service and she, to my relief, claims she doesn’t think at this point in our lives, a cleaning lady is necessary. But, judging from the tone of her answer, “not necessary” doesn’t mean she’s adamant about not wanting a cleaning lady. “If I had a cleaning lady, it would not be weekly and maybe even only once a month,” she said.
I believe right now she thinks she’s got the best of both worlds. First, she has an unlimited household account which she conservatively spends. I might add she is in charge of household expenses, so I assume that our household account also includes a “clothing allowance” that fills a part of her fashion wish list.
Secondly, I have never really thought about my vacuum job too seriously, but I must be more skilled than some husbands. I’ve repaired her vacuum once and even have a keen eye for dirty carpet corners. I’ve got a pretty good rhythm when pushing the vacuum back and forth.
I even move the recliners to clean the carpet underneath. And I just learned when you put fitted sheets on a bed, get your corner of the sheet on first before your counterpart completes the task. I also found out after visiting with another male vacuumer, spotting dirt is not necessarily a universal trait.
One hubby had his job recently criticized by his wife who after inspection believed he didn’t know what dirt looked like. That left me puzzled and even brought a smile  because that fella was a retired farmer.
Another “dirty story” goes when a bachelor believes there is no need to do housework at all. After the first four years the dirt doesn’t get any worse!
I’ve held to this strong belief, “If you do housework for money that’s domestic service. If you do it for nothing, that’s matrimony.”

RL Furse  is publisher emeritus of the News-Register

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