Commentary – A yard that cleans itself

Jeff Burgar

Spring cleaning reminds me. A fellow tells his wife, “If it wasn’t for men, we would all be living in caves, probably not cooking over a fire. We would still be in the Stone Age, maybe even worse.”

Wife is curious.

“How do you figure that?” she asks.

This could have been on an episode of According to Jim. It also sounds like something Kramer on Seinfeld would come up with. How about Tim Allen talking about a new power tool? “Woof, woof.” Maybe Joey on Friends explaining to Monica how to improve her cooking output. Any of them. But onward!

“Well,” says the fellow, “nothing against the male of the species, but their natural instinct is to lay around, keep an eye out for danger, and basically, think of ways to get out of work.”

“Oh,” says wife. “Like you and your buddies down at corporate office. Do as little as possible, and cook up ways to get raises and bonuses?”

Says he.

“Don’t forget the vast majority of civil servants or any union members. Wasn’t that your brother-in-law who said his union was working hard to get Valentine’s Day made a statutory holiday? And aren’t they working on a four-day work week now? A solid 32 hours per week?”

“If you are making a point here,” she says. “I still don’t know what it is, other than to crap all over men. Mind you,” as she probably pointed to his tummy bulge, “they often deserve it.”

In reply, he says, “Have you ever noticed that, apart from a few outliers here and there, women will work night and day, super hard, in sickness and health? They go to work, come home, and are still working. Unpacking groceries. Cleaning the house. Picking up toys. Feeding everybody. Letting the cats and dogs in and out. Washing dishes. Putting the kids to bed. Maybe watching a bit of TV. Zonking out. Waking first. Getting the kids ready for school. Breakfast. Backpacks. Then going to work.”

“That is indeed my day,” says the wife. “The only difference between me and single women is, they don’t have to clean up after a guy. Unless they have allowed one to move in. But if they have kids, it’s the same story. I still don’t see a point.”

“Well, it’s obvious. If men left it up to women, women would still be cleaning out the cave, slicing up the animals men bring home from the hunt, cooking them if a man had brought home some fire, looking after kids, maybe blocking off the cave entrance with a bunch of other families to keep out bad animals while the men and big boys defended the tribe from everything. But it is the inherent laziness of men that has brought us to today. Every time a woman complained, a man invented a washing machine. Or a vacuum cleaner. And fire. And electricity and ovens and lights. Everything! Running water. Flush toilets, The list is endless. Even beer!

“All so they wouldn’t have to pitch in helping with chores. But look how wonderful this all turned out for everybody. Seriously honey, aren’t guys the greatest?”

“Absolutely dear,” she purred. “Now go invent a place in the garden to sleep.”

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