Thursday, February 2, 2012

All Grown Up?

Sometimes I wonder why the world allowed Graham and I to get married. It's a good thing there isn't a test beforehand - we would have failed several sections abysmally. I can imagine the test, complete with terse notes on our performance.

Section 1: Organisation.

Couple has little-to-no discernible organisational skills. Papers are filed according to piles on various desks and tables. These are labelled: Yesterday, Last Week, and Really Old. Couple periodically attempts to sort papers, and invariably end up throwing away essential documents by accident.

Section 2: Cleanliness.

Couple tries hard to maintain cleanliness, but are hampered by poor organisation. Their method of inviting guests over to prompt them to clean up is fundamentally flawed.

Section 3: Food Preparation and Diet.

Couple enjoys good food, but display laziness in selecting and preparing food. Male considers Coke to be a valid substitute for water and a meat pie to be a routine lunch choice. Female becomes visibly agitated when she cannot locate ice cream. 

Section 4: Presentation.

Couple has little to no idea of how to present their home. Where others might have portraits or  paintings, they have TMNT and Mortal Kombat posters, and their living area consists of as many computers as they can cram into one concrete-floored room. 

...and so forth. It's not that we are dirty, or deliberately messy, but has more to do with the fact that we were both last in line for organisation skills when they were being handed out. Both Graham and I want to be successful, we truly do. Every so often we make a huge effort to organise our lives. We decide this is the week we are going have a clean toilet, and filed papers, and ironed shirts, just like real people!

Somehow, despite our best efforts, we find ourselves swamped in duties. I think of my mum, and I long for her abilities. How is it that my mum can run a household of eight plus cats, with seemingly no effort? She can keep a clean house, make sure healthy foods are on the table, teach my siblings, exercise, and still find time to write books. I don't know whether it's just my mind overstating how awesome my mum is, but it sometimes seems like she got it all - perfect housewife, mother, spouse, teacher...

Invariably, I think of my mother right at the moment I fall most short of her ideal. I'll find myself eating ice-cream for breakfast while lounging on the couch in my pyjamas whilst watching the Muppet Show, and I'll decide that I need to do better. Graham and I discuss a plan of action before we launch into work. 

But my enthusiasm is usually short-lived, as we burn ourselves out far too quickly. I rather like doing washing, but it starts to lose its charm after the third load, while Graham tires of sorting rubbish from essentials after the bin is filled and the garage cluttered with stuff to be donated or recycled. I catch both of us wandering over to the study and eyeing our computers. It only takes the slightest suggestion that we take a rest for both of us to drop what we were doing... and spend the rest of the day destroying robot armies together on the computer.

I am sure one day we will magically morph into responsible adults, capable of regarding diaries and filing cabinets with emotions other than fear and confusion. Until that day, however, I fear we are stuck in our habits of clean-and-collapse. And if it never happens, I can only assume we will either become homeless or become the subjects of a reality show as examples of what not to do.

I've expressed these fears to Graham, but he seems remarkably unworried. "As long as I still have a computer and an internet connection, I'm ok", he said. Which leads me to imagine Graham in rags, crouched in a cardboard box, gaming by the light from his monitor... and suddenly I'm not so worried. Life could be so much worse.


  1. Yeaaah cant say I am grown up either, my priorities are waaaay out the window, Im all like "yeaah a new pc is so much more important than food and fuel!

    1. Graham just read this and couldn't stop laughing... I guess it's not just a problem for us. And a new PC is a pretty big priority!