Friday, September 12, 2014

A Woman's Work is Never Fun

Dear Ann Abler,

Why is it okay for my husband to pay a lawn service, but not okay for me to have a housekeeper? I am busier than he is. I spend all day writing, teaching, raising two boys (12 and 4), completing grad school assignments, and talking to my mama on the phone. Isn't that enough? Don't I deserve domestic relief?

Dear Jody,

It sounds like you're in a 'Dyer' Situation. Sorry. I channeled Fozzie Bear; I'll start over:

Ahem. Domestic relief? You deserve a Nobel peace prize for not going ballistic and an Academy Award for Best Supporting Everything. How are you even able to compose a coherent sentence? Lay down or have a drink, please, because you’re making me tired.

First off, has it actually been established that it’s not “okay” for you to get a housekeeper? Second, does your husband only live in the yard? Who determined that a housekeeper is for you and lawn service is for him? Unless your house is pink and the yard is blue, there is really no way sure-fire way to divide this stuff up according to sex. 

Is this your house?

Now, you could be straightforward with your husband, and discuss your budget and options over dinner. Or, you could do the next most sensible thing and ask, “what would Lucy do?” Well, according to Season 2, Episode 4 (see how it’s sort of like quoting Bible verses?), the best thing to do is switch places with your husband for a week. You do his job. He does yours. Hilarity ensues. You might have some ‘splaining to do, but everyone will learn a little something along the way. Get ready for some zany antics, because those will happen as well. 

Who's got splaining to do now?

If for any reason that fool-proof plan fails, you can try doing what Ray did in Everybody Loves Raymond, and just be really bad at housework until your spouse insists on taking over (or getting you some help!).

Poor Debra
Isn't it nice how TV can solve all of our problems?


Now say two Hail Mommies and pour yourself a margarita. Unless it’s before 5 pm. In that case, make yourself a mimosa. 

You’re welcome,

Your Ann Abler


  1. Dear Ann Abler,
    GREAT ideas. And, yes, thank goodness for TV. I could never raise two boys without Andy Griffith's sage advice. I just wish I could peel a granny smith apple without breaking the rind like he does. Oh well. Back to domestic non-bliss: I did boycott once, but got tired of dodging tumbleweeds of dust bunnies and got really grossed out when the kitchen counters needed pressure-washing. Hmmm. I think you are on to something brilliant, though. If I switch roles, my new job (yard work) is done, which DOES leave time for naps and liquor. And, my husband, whom I call Tall Child, will have to step up his inside game if he wants to eat off real plates. Merry Maid = Merry Mama= Merr-iage Miracle. I think I'll print your response, fold it up in a pretty envelope, seal it with a kiss, leave it on my husband's pillow, fix myself a Bloody Mary (it's Sunday morning), and go sit on the patio and admire my maintenance-free yard. Thanks for your help, Ann Abler. Cheers, sister wife!

  2. Yes, TV has much to teach us. Everything I know about law enforcement, I learned from Andy Griffith, so I figure I'm pretty up-to-speed, right?

    Let me know how that letter delivery goes, but only if it goes well. I'm allergic to bad news.