Hausfrau Hausfuckery

Nearly two years after I packed my bags and said Tschuss to my marriage, my domestic skills hit an all new low Sunday night, as I nearly burned the house down trying to cook brown lentils. Really, all I had to do was put water and lentils and salt in a pot and set it to boiling for about 10 minutes. But I got distracted and, channeling my sister, who as a kid nearly took out our apartment by leaving a pot of boiling water on the stove until the pot warped, left the lentils on so long there was smoke coming out of the kitchen an hour later (thank fuck for thick-bottomed saucepans, otherwise there would’ve been a fire).

This is just one of many mishaps to have occurred over here in the Lederhosen household recently as I try to juggle all the things happening in my brain with those things I actually have to use my hands to do. Which is kind of amazing to me, because as a hausfrau has-been, I have all but given up completely on my domestic duties. Sure, I pick up around the place every so often, but those dreams I had of sewing the Diva her own pretty dresses? Passed on the job to Omi. The ironing? Outsourced to the cleaners (after a late-night, mid-month-long insomnia spell, cursing session in which I could not for the life of me figure out why the iron wasn’t steaming — tip, plug it in first). How can I be so bad at housekeeping if I never do it?

(BTW: I’m still on the lookout for a putzfrau to keep the grime at bay, because, as my financial adviser recently told me, I earn too much money per hour to not outsource toilet scrubbing to someone willing to do it for 10 bucks an hour. That adviser is worth his weight, I tell you. And if you know a good putzfrau in my neighborhood, I’ll give a bit of the gold).

The irony here is just how happy I am to have made this downward spiral. Not only because I found out the bliss promoted on DIY blogs around the world were a Mormon-sponsored mission aimed at convincing young women to be stay-at-home moms.

But because you know how I knew my marriage was over? When, after a six-week trial separation that I never wanted to end, I returned to my husband only to be told that I shouldn’t look for a job, that all he wanted from me was a clean house and a warm meal on the dinner table when he got home from work. Woo-boy. In the 21st century? Do you know who you married, Bub? I did the stay-at-home mom thing for two years and loved every second of the time I spent with the Diva. But cooking gourmet vegan meals for the family and scrubbing toilets just wasn’t ever going to be as rewarding as hanging out with rock stars (what I call “work”) so I ditched the husband and the domesticity — traded up.

Of course there were many other bigger problems between Herr Lederhosen than just cooking but that was the point at which the apron strings were cut. And though I haven’t looked back since, I do wonder sometimes how skills I took 12 years perfecting could just go up in smoke like that. Housekeeping’s not like running, where if you sit a day (or a year) out, your muscles atrophy. Is it?

Well, no matter. I’m not going back to the haufrau-hood. Guess that’s a sign of my slow German womanization. The kid’s getting “butter brot” for her evening meal every night from here on out….


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