Weekly Column 6: Minutia Mom



It has recently dawned on me that somewhere along the way, my sense of accomplishment became a product of my ability to be a good homemaker.  The creative energies I once used to design jewelry and dress people are now spent trying to build intricate forts and streamline the laundry process.  For instance, I’ve found that by rolling towels one can save considerable folding time while providing the added benefit of a spa-like appearance.  I am a woman who single handedly opened and ran two successful companies, yet I was more excited to get my son through his first dental appointment than the day my line got into Bloomingdales.

            When did this happen?  When did I accept the job as Master of the Mundane?  I remember the ad, it read:  Seeking highly motivated person, who requires little sleep, to cook, clean, wipe tushies, noses, and countertops… oh, and provide occasional sex to employer.  Person will be overworked and underappreciated.  It is preferred that you have no prior experience or references.  Always on duty.  Will pay nothing.    

Not only did I take the job, I thoroughly enjoy it and happen to be damn good at it.  Let’s face it, I’m a superhero… the lamest superhero on Earth.   Able to clean an explosive diapie with a single wipe: It’s a wet-vac, it’s Mr. Clean… nope it’s me: Minutia Mom! 

I can picture it now; my costume would be covered with stickers that were put on me without my knowledge.  It would be stained with chocolate or some other gooey substance I’d have to taste to place.  It would be fashionable, but about 6 months outdated, as I have about 1hr per evening to catch up on my backlog of magazines, Tivo, and the NY Post crosswords I do to keep my rapidly deteriorating brain sharp.  Sadly, I am no longer smart enough for the Times.

            My skin would be relatively clear minus a couple of blackheads from slopping on too many anti-aging creams.  The furrow of my brow would be screaming for Botox, only to be outdone by my Restylane seeking laugh lines. My Hair would be slicked back into a ponytail, not by some chi-chi product, but with the natural grease built up from not having time to shower.

            I would walk the streets in my costume, my freshly laundered cape in tow, looking for housekeeping and child rearing injustices.  “Excuse me Ma’am, but it would behoove you to consolidate the darks with the lights and run them together on cold.  It would save you both time and money, not to mention conserves H2O.  “Pardon me Sir, but if you let that tantrum run its course you’ll get a far better result in the long run.”   Maybe going public would bring me the admiration I so unabashedly seek.  I have found there is nothing people enjoy more than unsolicited criticism and advice; especially on how to run their household and raise their children. 

            I am always flexing my supermuscles around my house.  I start by asking my husband to do some routine chore like putting the dishes in the dishwasher.  A fitting task considering he seems to think they wash themselves.  I know this because when he does me the courtesy of taking a glass or dish from the table he places it on the counter ever so close to the sink, but is unable to actually make it in.  Clearly, this is due to the force field I  installed around the basin.  If he penetrates the force field, he never washes the food off the plate into that hole in the sink, for fear that the monster that lives there may bite off a finger.

“Honey, I’ve only trained the dishes to jump into the sink from where you leave them.  For a more thorough cleaning, we humans must step in.  Don’t worry the monster in the hole only bites if you shove your hand in its mouth.”  Then I watch and wait knowing he will soon fail at this task, miserably.  He’s ½ way through and … here it comes… wait for it…10-9-8-… “I can’t get it all in, it’s too full.  You’ll have to run it a second time.”  He says this with enough confidence to imply that a single shrimp fork and the thing’s gonna blow.

            “Second time?  Like hell I will.  Have no fear kind sir.”  I say as I bounce off the sofa and spring into action.  With my cape flapping behind me, I jump directly from my seat over the counter in a single bound.  I stand, hands firmly on hips, assessing the damage.  Then he looks at me oddly as if to ask, “Why is that towel tied around your neck, and why did you call me kind sir?”  “Step aside,” I say as I hip bump him out of the way.  Like an expert Tetris player, I fit in every piece: with room for a Rachel Ashwell dinner party to spare.  Than, wagging my finger, I reprimand him for not taking the valves out of the sippy cups. 

            Though it is an interesting side effect, my goal is not to debase him.  My goal is to display the sheer magnitude of my powers and reiterate the amazing feats I perform on a daily basis.  I avert looming tantrums with my Mommy Mind negotiating skills.  My Bionic Child Carrying Arm vacuums so much dog hair, I could knit the sweaters needed to warm a small village in Ethiopia (okay, bad example).  My point is, he should see this dishwasher phenomenon, rise from his butt, which I previously knocked him on with my child-bearing hips, and applaud me.  He should applaud my greatness, or at the very least, nod in my general direction.          

            Look, I don’t know him personally, but I can say with much confidence that Wonder Woman’s husband doesn’t come home from his accounting job, or whatever it is he does, and ask her to gas up the invisible jet and get take-out ‘cause he had a long day crunching numbers.

How then can my husband witness my awesomeness and still have the audacity to request some time to relax when he walks in the door?  What was the commute home, a business meeting?  You had an hour, it’s not my fault you didn’t use it wisely.  If I had a random free hour everyday, oh the things I could do.  I could listen to music that isn’t sung by Disney characters.  I could end world hunger.  Better yet, I could shower and moisturize in the same day.  Alas, I am on 24/7.

Who reads “Strawberry Shortcake Goes Apple Picking” 500 times at 9PM because the phrase “Now this is the last time.” has no real meaning?  Who flies into the room at 1AM on bad dream patrol?  Who uses Mommy Supersonic hearing to catch 6AM candy thievery?  Me, Minutia Mom, I’m a freakin’ superhero for G-ds sake.

My new career may not be as lucrative in pay or recognition as some of my other jobs, but there is reward in altruistic work and a cheap thrill in seeing my husband screw up.  Hmmm, tonight I think I’ll ask him to fold some laundry.





18 thoughts on “Weekly Column 6: Minutia Mom

  1. Cherie

    You are soooo funny, everbody is reading this blog. I can picture Mark trying to match up socks or figure out how to fold a tee shirt without rolling it up in a ball.

  2. Stacey Woolfson

    We are all superheros…my biggest heroic is getting out of my house ready for the day at 7:40 w/both kids intact..dont forget that one! And at least your husband puts dishes on the counter-what are you complaining about! Not sure mine knows where the counter is.
    Anyway, your blog is cute, I will keep reading. Hope everyone is doing well!

  3. jill hochberg

    I was with some friends just yesterday and we were complaining about how our husbands ignore the dishwasher and leave everything in and around the sink! Then I read your blog this morning and you cracked me up!! I passed it on the them to check out. good stuff!

  4. Kelly Elsasser

    So I laughed out loud so many times. I loved the valves in the sippy cups and I love the force field around the sink. I too have an invisible field around my sink. My husband does the exact same thing! Awesome job!

  5. nancy schutt

    Ok, you asked for brutal honesty.
    I have been enjoying your articles and think you are a wonderful, and hilarious writer. But it amazes me that jokes about male cluelessness in the home are still fertile ground. This same genre of humor could have come straight out of The Jackie Gleason Show from the 50’s. Has nothing changed in the relationship between heterosexual couples in 60 years? Are men STILL utterly incompetent and women are STILL doing all the child rearing/daily life maintenance while men expect a plate of food placed before them with no idea what it took for it to get there? So articles like this are for similarly chagrined wives so they can at least get a laugh out of it, and perhaps for the education of the husbands, who sadly, still need that. But to me, the subject matter has been thoroughly explored for decades- and what the hell? the younger generation is still modeling itself on the lifestyle of their grandparents?

    Being neither mother nor wife- though I do enjoy the articles about the kids, I love the articles that reach beyond the subject of vintage model hetero gender relationships. LOVE reading about your neighbors, your dog, alligators, pedicures. Would love to hear more about politics and world events, home remodeling, live theater, rollerblading. Is there life beyond the kitchen and laundry room?
    DEFINITELY go to the gym, everyday, because you deserve it. DEFINITELY keep writing, because you are gifted.

  6. admin Post author

    Nancy… always love the comments and you’re right it’s cliche and redundant, but sadly TRUE! I would be happy to write about how me and my husband raise the children and do the housework commune style (50/50), or democratic style (we vote on tasks we must do), or even Rock Paper Scissors style (we shoot for it.) Then all the other moms that read the article could relate and we could have a laugh about how we our husbands never see scissors coming.
    But alas, I do not live in a Utopia, such as that. And sadly, I do spend way too much time cleaning, and way too little time at the gym. I pick up after my husband because if I don’t no one will. Even sadder, most the 30 something young hip chic intelligent women I know and don’t know relate all too well. Is my husband’s dinner ready when he enters the door… No, I have to take his cap and shoes, rub his feet, hand him his paper, and light his pipe first.

  7. Julie

    It seems so many of us live that same sink to dishwasher scenario. We should all keep our sense of humor along with our Superhero capes near by…..

  8. mauniejames3

    Your terrific…only one thing… never ever taste anything that looks like chocolate if you find it in a house where small children live…I know of what I speak…and just so’s ya know…we are all married to the clueless man who goes to work each day and feels as if it is he who is saving the world….I found your blog and will read you all the time…your a riot.


    LOVE…..sadly i can relate all too well! Oh how i wish i could become part of your comic…isn’t there a role for me too in there….
    You are hysterical and once again i was crying from laughing so hard…i need more humor like this so all the other bulls*** (that occurs in the house) wont seem to hold such importance. Why after all these years do we think our husbands might just make a drastic change and actually start helping or appreciating what we do in a day. if we added up all the hours we work (24/7 here) and actually got paid to do it….who would be at home waiting to take care of us???
    i love you and your writing!!!

  10. Lainie

    Love your blogs. This is hysterical. I can totally relate, but I have one more “adorable” habit that both my kids , as well as my husband do to make my life that much more enjoyable. Is it just my household, or does everyones kids & husband ( no matter how many times you’ve shown the locale) have a hard time finding the hampers? EVERY morning after the family leaves, I find myself collecting dirty laundry , sometimes in the strangest of places ( including right NEXT TO the hamper). But, I do return the favor to my loving, adoring husband: I “accidently” leave the door open when out walking the dog (despite repeated ” DONT LEAVE THE DOOR OPEN. YOU’RE LETTING IN THE MOSQUITOS!!) & I “accidently” drive over the grass on the way into our driveway, leaving not only destroyed grass in my wake, but mud covered tire tracks on the driveway. He just loves that. 🙂


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