Tuesday, May 1, 2012

Chores: Desire vs Fear

by KAK 

When I was wee, I had The Chore Chart. It was divided into Things I Had To Do, Things I Ought To Do, and Things I Could Do for Extra Money. Each category had a different monetary value and I was paid monthly for each check on the Chore Chart. It worked well until my teenage years when I lost my cohort in domesticity (she went to college, nothing too tragic...for her).

My first year of college involved a roommate. She was tidy until the advents of pot and her jock boyfriend. After that, I didn't do roommates...until I acquired a Long-term Roommate. Four things determined our division of labors:
  1. Knowledge of How to Complete the Task
  2. Physical Ability to Complete the Task
  3. Level of Desire to Have the Task Completed
  4. Fear of Result Should Other Complete the Task
When we started co-habitation, he believed I met requirements #1-3 to do his laundry. A load of his favorite shirts and a large bottle of bleach later, he discovered I had #2, but he was unsure if my failing was in #1 or #3. #4 became his greatest determining factor. He wisely decided his stash of muscle-car shirts was not worth risking and hence for did his own damn laundry.

Conversely, it took me months to realize that boys are to bed-making as cats are to baths. I still don't understand why, but I accepted his utter lack of #3 was increasing my #3. That roommate moved-on many years ago, leaving behind a wealth of knowledge about which tasks I have a bit of the OCD and which tasks I do without thinking.

My current roommate and I are still bickering over how kibble belongs in a bowl not strewn about the floor.

No comments:

Post a Comment