Yesterday I was at my local greengrocer getting some nice fresh fruit and veg because I’m awesome like that. Anyway, I was there doing my thing when I overheard two young guys who work there having a discussion. One of them, we’ll call him the first guy, was complaining about his live-in girlfriend. From his age and his naivety I think it would be fair to make the assumption that this is his first live-in relationship.
He was complaining about how much she was nagging him to do stuff around the house. It wasn’t a bitter form of complaining; I reckon he’s got a few more years before it evolves to that stage. It was more of a perplexed state that he was in. He truly couldn’t understand why it was that she was breaking his balls so much. As far as he was concerned the house was clean enough but it wasn’t good enough for her. He really poured his heart out to his colleague.
Who we’ll call the second guy. After listening to this the second guy came out with his magnificent advice. It amounted to something along the lines of, ‘that’s just how chicks are, they always complain, you’ll have to learn to live with it, it’ll be like that for the rest of your natural life.’
Then the second guy walked off in a manner that communicated that the case was closed as the grand pronouncement had been made. The first guy stood there for a few seconds looking exasperated and confused, and then he proceeded to go back to stacking carrots or whatever it was that he was doing while muttering to himself.
I couldn’t help myself. I moved over to him and quietly got his attention.
“Just so you know,” I said, “Everything your mate just told you is pretty much rubbish.”
He perked up on hearing this.
I continued. “The simple truth is that whoever wants the house to be clean the most is the one who will become responsible for doing it. She wants the house to be more clean than you, is that right?”
“Yeah,” he said. “Absolutely.”
“Right. And you don’t have a problem with that up until the point where she makes your life a misery about it?”
“Yeah.” He was looking hopeful now.
“Is there anything that you do around the house that she doesn’t particularly care about doing?”
He thought for a moment. “The garden. I take care of the garden. She doesn’t care about that.”
“And do you break her balls because she doesn’t pull her weight in the garden?”
A light was beginning to shine in his eyes. “No, I don’t.”
“Does she help you in the garden at all?”
“Not a bit.”
“But you help her clean the house?”
“Yeah, I do. And keeping the garden tidy is a requirement of the lease.”
“There’s your answer then,” I said.
I left him there with his carrots.