Daily Archives: February 24, 2006

More Main

My sister had to wash the pots and pans when we were kids.

My brother and I took turns each week setting and clearing the dinner table. Setting the table was by far the preferred chore. Clearing the table afterwards involved trash and scraping the dishes and loading the dishwasher. The pots and pans didn’t ever go in the dishwasher, and Main did those.

I think about this now, in light of the fact that Dawn and I don’t have a dishwasher and I do all of the dishes. Dawn does the cooking, so it’s fair really that I do the dishes. I don’t have the inclination to plan and execute meals anyway, so this works out so much better.

I have something of a system to doing the dishes though, but this really is more indicative of my general preference for routine, rather than exhibiting any sort of planning capabilities. I like to rinse off all the dishes in the sink and stack them in a dishpan. Then, when the sink is empty and itself cleaned, I soap and scrub the dishes, with the water turned off, placing the dishes back in the sink. Then when everything is scrubbed, they all get rinsed off and stacked in the drying rack. Someone came across recently and showed me a picture of me when I must have been like four years old, doing the dishes. I had on an apron and was using a white plastic dishpan just like I use today. The point of the picture was that I was pretending to be my grandmother, my Nana, at the sink with the apron and the dishpan washing the dishes. So even though I don’t have any explicit memory regarding such, I like to think that I do the dishes the way my Nana taught me to do them.

Main tells me that she was happy to do the pots and pans, since there were relatively few of them, compared to the other dishes. I remember one time when I was five or six, so she must have been eight or nine, when she convinced me to help her do the pans. She explained that she could do them in two minutes. So we’d each do half, with her taking the first minute and I would then finish up. She may have been bamboozling me. You think? And I also remember around this same time, she’d do this trick where she’d scoop up a handful of soapy water and suck it into her mouth, without retching or spitting. I remember this specifically as some sort of trick, that she wasn’t really tasting any soapy water, but I couldn’t figure out what she was doing with it otherwise. She doesn’t remember any of this.