Well hello there long weekend. You’re looking good.
Pour me a cool drink and let’s move this party to the patio, where we can kick off our shoes, sun our legs and let the negotiations begin.
Most Canadians don’t refer to this holiday as May 24th. No, it’s the May two-four, like the case of beer that so many will enjoy this weekend.
But in my house, the two-four is the ratio of requests I will make for household chores to be completed, versus the excuses and other diversions my beloved Carpenter will make to ignore said requests.
You see, there is no “Honey-do” list in our house. The Carpenter runs job sites for a living. He bosses crews around and makes grown men sulk with his Calvinistic work ethic and his man-up tactics that have been known to break a few lesser-skilled tradesmen. Two things the Carpenter will not tolerate: laziness and laziness. There is no goofing around when there is work to be done. No chatting on your mobile phone. No socializing. And for the sake of this man’s sanity, never, ever stand still.
Joking is for lunchtime, and that’s only because the union insists on breaks. But let me assure you, the breaks end when the clock says so. Now back to work. Slave driver. Brute. Tool belt. Hot.
And then, there is home. When your spouse gives all his physical energy to the job site because it pays the bills, there is almost nothing left of him for the home front, where the quality of life is supposed to reflect that whole work-ethic thing. So while I am happy to report there are foundations and concrete structures all over the province that are spectacularly leveled (cough) and up to code, the King has let his castle fall to ruin (okay, look, I may be exaggerating, but that’s why I’m the writer in this marriage. I get to use adjectives.).
It stands to reason the Carpenter does not take orders gladly. I wouldn’t dream of attempting it, more out of respect than the fact it would end in failure. We don’t make demands on one another in this relationship. At least, not out loud. It’s the silent negotiations that are the most intellectually stimulating, after all.
The Carpenter won’t be seduced into chore completion. Believe me, I’ve tried. This is where my fantasy meets his reality. I don’t quit though, because I’m stubborn and frankly, the prize, if I were to ever be successful, would be all mine. But my spouse has stamina for the resistance of both chores and seduction if he feels he’s being tricked. It only makes him that much more desirable. It’s annoying.
This weekend, I have two basic requests: we (and by “we” I think you know what I mean) prep the house for painting and rip off the front deck for the new one to begin. I didn’t even say finish. All I want is a start. An effort. Something. Anything.
This will be met with the Carpenter’s distractions, like the dump-run for garbage (because curbside collection is for amateurs), the gardening, grass cutting and, finally, quality time with his iPad to search the scores of every major sport ever created. And scheduled naps because he works so hard.
And who can argue? He’s a keeper.
Writing has been my passion since I learned how to hold a pencil (which I still cannot do properly). Despite my father’s insistence that I would starve to death in this career, I remain well fed and eager to write more. They say you should do what you love: I love to write.