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Spackle Queen

13 May

It’s cloudy, I had a pot of coffee, and I still just want to fall asleep.  I hate weather like this.  I just can’t make myself do much.

On a happy note, I finally got my birthday present:  acrylic nails!  I’ve been dying for them, but it didn’t make sense to get them before the move and before everything was unpacked.  So now I type with gorgeous French manicured nails, and when I click them on the counter, it makes me feel a little more like an adult.

Mike and I have made major headway on getting the house situated.  Everything extra is in a closet.  The furniture is close to getting arranged, and we may have some new appliances coming.  Yay no more laundromat! 

But a funny story:  I was sitting on the bed watching television the other night and Mike was trying to get my attention.  I must not have been responding in the way he wanted, because next thing I knew, he was jumping on me and tickling me until I couldn’t breathe.  As he rolled off of me, having had my undivided attention, he rolled into the wall and knocked out a square foot of drywall that the previous owner had patched.  There was no cussing.  A lot of laughing.  And then the hole was there for a few days.

But two days ago, we wandered around the Home Depot picking up spackle and paint and so on.  Man’s work!  And when we got home, Mike reattached the drywall square, secured it in place (I missed this part, as the Cleveland Cavaliers were embarrassing themselves on television and LOST was on), and then let it dry.  Last night, Mike mixed the spackle, which I think is one of the best words ever, and he let me try it.  So as he gooped it on, I failed in my gender role and began spackling like a pro.  Well, that’s what he said, but I feel like he was probably laughing at me when I was turned around.  And now the wall is spackled.

But today led me to want to keep going on it.  I think I found it cathartic.  But today, I think I upheld my most housewifey day yet.  I woke up and took Mike’s car to the shop for his inspection, then picked it up when it was finished.  After that I did the dishes, picked up the house, and made Mike lunch before he got home for his break.  Then, I loaded all the cardboard boxes into his car so we could take them to recycle later on, all the while revisiting the drywall square to sand down the excess spackle.  Spackle spackle spackle.  And because Mike’s 25th birthday is tomorrow, I ran to the store, got everything I need to make him cupcakes to take into work, and a bottle of champagne for tomorrow night.

And still, I sand down spackle.

I’m figuring out that being a housewife is kind of exciting.  When Mike got home for lunch and had a steaming plate of pasta, his car taken care of in the back lot, the excess cardboard loaded up and the house clean and spot on the wall sanded, he said, “Wow, you’re really holding down the fort today.”  Then he picked up his guitar and sang me an impromptu song about how a little blonde girl was cleaning up the apartment.  He’s a wonderful man.

But as much as I enjoyed holding down the fort, I still really enjoyed spackling and sanding.  And watching the Cavs and Penguins (both of whom were eating it up).  Gender roles?  Meh.  I struggle with this because I do believe in them. 

So to comment on this link ( http://www.cracked.com/article_18529_6-absurd-gender-stereotypes-that-science-says-are-true.html ), I’m choosing a few, but addressing all.

1)  Women can’t drive?  I feel like I can…but I also find myself yelling at women on the highway. And when someone cuts me off, I often say, “Figures.  It’s a chick.”  I’m such a sexist pig.

2)  Men are freaking slobs.  Hm.  Some more than others.  But I know I’m much more neat than  Mike.  I think it comes down to the fact that men rationalize things like, “Why pick up that pair of shorts when I’m just going to put them on again later tonight?” and “What’s it matter if all the dishes are dirty?  I’ll wash what I need when I need it.”  I’d rather have everything ready at my disposal, which explains why I get to do a good two hours of housework a day.  And LOVE IT.

3)  Women are wimps.  Um.  A little.  But it’s all on a spectrum.  I’d rather have surgery than be pinched.  I can’t stand minor pain.  And I feel like major pain often results in something good.  I’m willing to suffer for a purpose, i.e. childbirth, breast implants (which I do not have), lifting a car off of my child.  All things that I’m willing to suffer for.  Just don’t freaking pinch me.

4)  Women love to talk.  Yes we do.  And if men talked more, we wouldn’t talk so much.  🙂

5)  Women see mauve, men see purple.  TRUE.  Until you take a man into a hardware/paint store.  My God.  My experience from Home Depot the other night just proves this to be true.  I didn’t know there was a flat paint, a base paint, an eggshell, and a satin paint.  And when I look at that paint wall with all the little pieces of paper with all the colors on them, I get super excited.  Mike used to mix paint at Home Depot, so he’s well aware of the differences in color.  I just don’t think most men care until it’s something they’re working with.  I mean, if they’re wearing khaki shorts, they’re wearing khaki shorts.  If they’re painting a wall or laying carpet, though, they want to know the exact specifications.  Trust me.

6)  Women are lightweights.  Sometimes, yeah.  Because if we drank as much as men do, our bar tabs would be OUTSTANDING.  We make for cheaper dates. 

Now, off to chill my champagne.  I will vacuum with an alcoholic beverage soon.  I will.

Spackle.

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3 Comments

Posted by on May 13, 2010 in Daily Happenings, Domesticity

 

Tags: ,

3 responses to “Spackle Queen

  1. Brian Guppy

    May 15, 2010 at 6:56 pm

    Despite having sent you the link, I think the connections between the scientific research and the gender stereotypes they’re using it to support are pretty flimsy. It does at least demonstrate that men and women do have real differences in mental behavior and capability and it isn’t all just an arbitrary sociocultural construction.

    Having said that, I think we place way too many things in gender-specific categories unnecessarily. Spackling is a perfect example – it doesn’t require a lot of upper body strength or the ability to navigate using cardinal directions, so why should it be considered man’s work? I think you can spackle to your heart’s content and not worry about whether it detracts from your role as housewife. (In fact, I think the housewife should be the one taking care of the house, and that includes “manly” jobs like repairing toilets, replacing thermostats, and patching drywall).

    Also, most men (myself included) have no particular talent or passion for any of the typical “handyman” stuff that gets done around the house. We do it simply because it’s what’s expected of us, and we can succeed because for the most part it requires very little knowledge or skill beyond basic tool use and the ability to locate and shut off water valves and circuit breakers. Most women could do it if they really tried, but most don’t because they think they either can’t or shouldn’t.

    Thanks for writing about this – gender-stuff has been on my mind a lot lately, and this is good food for thought.

    Question: What exactly do you mean by “gender role”?

     
  2. Jenny P.

    May 21, 2010 at 7:38 pm

    women are wimps and lighweights? PSHAW. i’ve drank harder and beat up more men than bruce willis. eat it

     
  3. beckygermain

    June 4, 2010 at 1:46 am

    Definitely can hold my liquor with the best of them and I can say, without a shadow of a doubt, that women are FAR tougher than man. Parenthood has shown me that mean are CLEARLY the weaker sex. Case in point, I still do the laundry, clean the house, run the errands and watch our son on four hours sleep…meanwhile Talin is screaming, “It’s not fair!” at 4 a.m. the other night when I asked him to get up and feed his son after he’d slept for six hours. Six hours…ha. Six hours isn’t sleep dep….he doesn’t know what sleep dep is.

    But I say all of this as a stay at home mom and housewife. I’m totally jiggy with the whole deal and “roles” thang. That said, I can spackle, sand, paint, change my oil, hold my own in a semi-involved conversation about car mechanics, mow the lawn and demo and tile a bathroom. But that said…I learned how to do all of those things from my husband…a rather traditional man who still gets irritated when I go rifling through his toolbox for a screwdriver, but who also becomes infuriated when I don’t hold a power drill correctly and then has to show me the right way because by God, “I can’t let my wife install french blinds with a screwdriver and seriously, I real can’t watch you hold your pinkie up with a power tool in your hands. Here give it to me and let me show you how…”

    So what does this say about gender roles? I dunno…I lost my point…pregnant brain never left me.

     

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