Thursday, March 3, 2011

Open Letter to the Men in My Family

Emma, aka The Pole Dancer, has had it...Kate can hardly blame her. Every single thing in her house is male. There's only so much testosterone that one can handle...


Dear Males,

I am pulling an “Eat Pray Love” and running away to Europe.  I am emptying the savings account and my forwarding address for the future is...Italy.  And when asundry folks ask why I am on "holiday" - here's why. I am back from a long weekend visiting my sister with my youngest son, Youngest.  I left my oldest son, Eldest, and Hubby at home.   I was amazed to find that my name was Mud when I returned.

My name was Mud because the Netflix subscription was suspended.  Our credit card was hacked (again!) and I apparently haven't updated all the automatic payments yet.  Why is it that only I am capable of typing in the new 16 digit Visa number into the website?  Keep in mind my significant other has a math degree and a computer science degree. 

My name was Mud because Eldest's lunch card was out of money. While I had updated the credit card info for this site, I had not reset the parameters for when to auto deduct money.  Six seconds on the website fixed the issue - but Eldest had to eat on the free lunch program cereal meal of shame the entire time I was out of town.  And yes, I feel badly but even if genius husband couldn't figure out how to update the website, how about handing the boy $5?  

While my name is Mud almost every night in the cooking department - from tears at the thought of eating the dinner I cooked to outright refusals from the boys, and lackluster reviews from Hubby in the form of “It's ok…” “It tastes like a spice is missing…” or “I've had better...”  - while  I am away, they eat Dominoes, subs from Safeway, McDonalds, sausages from the freezer that they said smelled funny, and spaghetti at a neighbour’s house.  First night back I make garlic lime fajitas - and all I hear is - you didn't buy any sour cream?  If they choke on the chocolate chip cookies I baked, I'm not sure what the odds are that I'll actually perform the Heimlich Maneuver. But I know they’re low.

My name is Mud because Eldest didn't have any spring clothes.  Or more accurate - clothes from last year that still fit and that he likes.  It was 42 degrees when I left and 75 when I got back 5 days later.  I had actually completed the Seasonal Clothing Migration as I was looking for things for the trip for Youngest.  No thanks given that there were choices of shorts and t- shirts at hand in the drawers just when they were needed - only complaints that the choices were unwanted this season.  

And the question - do "we" have time to go shopping for new clothes?  God I hate the WE.  WE all know that the WE in the equation is ME.  I hate WE even more than I hate IN.  Does anyone else have an IN rant?  You know the one that starts "I said IN the laundry basket (drawer, car, backpack...) not near, by, on top of, hanging out of, underneath, in the vicinty... IN IN IN!!!  Followed by a look at your watch to see how late in the day it is - and usually it's only 8:25am.

My name is Mud because I hadn't adequately defined the playdate schedule.  I had arranged for Eldest to be dropped off before school at a neighbor’s house and have playdates each day after school.  The final day, his friend's mom was picking up Eldest at school.  Which caused this:

Eldest:  Where?
Me: At school.
Eldest: But, where??
Me: At the front of the school.
Eldest: BUT WHERE??
Me: OhfortheloveofMaude! What. Do.  You. Want?!  Six meters from the front door?  The longitude and latitude?  It is not a big school and there is only one door you’re allowed to use. Find her. 

My name was Mud because Eldest didn't have a science notebook.  I supplied every single item on the sadistic teacher's back to school shopping list. Admittedly, the marble notebooks from last year that came home with only the first 8 pages filled, I ripped out and made Eldest reuse. But he gave some sob story to Papa and they had to go out and buy a new one.  It was apparently traumatic for Eldest and vastly annoying for Hubby and I had to hear about the trauma in great detail.  I just Google mapped their harrowing journey - according to their GPS system, CVS is a 4 min drive from my house.

My name is Mud because I put the cord I found on the floor with what looked like phone jacks on either end in the spare cords section in the tool room.  How was I to know it was a crucial part of the LEGO Mindstorms and the robot wouldn't work without it? How about putting it IN (there is that word again!  deep breath, exhale) the specially purchased Mindstorm bin next time?

So call me Mud and call me in Italy.  I will be eating tiramisu, praying to the god Bacchus, and loving the sunset over the Grand Canal.

And probably in a Mud Bath. It’s only appropriate.

(c)Herding Turtles, Inc. 2009 - 2011


  1. Everything you just described occurs at my house. Including Netflix and Lunch accounts. Oh, and the Where? at school thing! Ugh! There is one freaking place to pick you people up, that is where you are to be picked up from. Stand with the other confused children! Sigh... so glad I'm not alone!

  2. Now that's a rant!!!! you deserve your chianti and a few extra massages to boot!

  3. Oh, even yesser!!! The "WE" bugs the ever lovin' mess out of me!! MISTER: "Did we feed the dog yet?"
    "I don't know, did WE? I know I've changed and FED our child, started a load of laundry, unloaded the dishwasher and cleaned up YOUR dishes from last night that were *NEAR* the dishwasher."

  4. totally just described my life. Add to it that I work as a teacher all day so I am "mud" to society and generally am in trouble for something (like not filing paperwork fast enough) at work as well.
    I asked dh to start dinner tonight and eldest overheard and, here at 6:50 am is already complaining about what we are having....

  5. I am coming with you!!! Living with multiple boys is killing me too!!

  6. I'm headed out of town for ONE night, and I'm prepared to hear just about all of those complaints when I get home. It's enough to make me want to stay away permanently. If they can't survive without me for 24 hours, their never going to make it in the world.

  7. Oh, how about my name is mud because I didn't give your sex last night so therefore you "punish me" by not letting me sleep in this morning like you have every other Thursday morning for 1 1/2 years? Nice.

  8. Oh thank Maude! Its not just me.

  9. I loved it! You are awesome mud! I am guilty of "WE", I use it against my husband. Does that count for me or against me?

  10. After 30 years I have learned to qualify the Royal "WE." "We need to ..." Do you mean that " I " need to do this or are "we" going to do it together? And I have learned to say, "fuggedaboudit! you do it because "WE" are busy and "We" are not Amused."

  11. I feel the same way completely...why is it everything falls on the mom to get done yet we don't get any thanks for doing it? somedays just don't feel worth it and others do but most are like those listed above...

  12. Wow. I'm amazed that you ladies put up with all this!!! Next time block the debit card, block the credit card and don't do laundry for 2 weeks before leaving. We have 3 boys (plus me), and if I saw my boys treat their mother like that they would be BLEEP in the BLEEP with 2x4 BLEEP while I BLEEP them on their BLEEPs. For all the work mom does, there is a minimun amount of respect that needs to be shown, and it all starts with the words they say.

    If'n ya don't like wot's on the table, you're welcome to the conversation. And yes. you will sit there AS IF you are eating, even though you are choosing not to. And guess what your nighttime snack will be? NADA!!!

    This is why I usually have more female friends than guy friends. God Bless all of you! And dudes- its all really not that hard to unload the dishwasher!

  13. I almost peed my pants at the school photo. You are a funny girl. And painfully familiar. I swear to god, if I have to say ONE MORE TIME to put shoes in the basket, I may grab the Nerf guns currently residing in my umbrella basket and beat myself over the head.

  14. Oh my Maude, yes. I have a daughter, too, so I'm not outnumbered, but really, the males are making me crazy. If I ever found out who invented the "shake it off" after peeing, I would go back in time and strangle that guy! Where do you think those little droplets go? All over the freaking bathroom! I just cleaned in here, why does it smell like pee? *sigh* I had my son convinced he had to use tp every time, until he started kindergarten. Then he came home and said, "No, Mommy, everyone else does this!" Awe.Some.

  15. Dead @longitude & latitude!

    Just. Damn. Dead! LOL

    ~ Mom of three knucklehead boys (four if you include the spouse)

  16. I love this - I just spent three days making elaborate arrangements for dad and three boys so that I could sneak to Florida for 48 hours to check in on my mom. It was worth it, but seriously. I'm pretty sure the dog did not have fresh water the entire time I was gone. Apparently no one is able to cast their gaze downward to the floor and see that the dish is empty - which would also explain why I'm the only one who ever picks things up off of that same floor.

    And please, don't get me started on my neverending quest to get them all to stop "hanging" their coats in the shoe basket instead of on one of the 8 hooks on the wall directly above. GAH.

  17. Ah yes.....and how do you classify "thrown across the bedroom floor" clothes....clean or dirty?

  18. I just love, love, LOVE the "WE". NOT!!!!!!!!!!!!

    "WE" are married to an over-the-road truck driver. "WE" are responsible for everything home, car, pet, kid and truck-related. God forbid, that "WE" should forget some little detail along the way because the never-home half will be sure to let the always-home half know -- usually at full volume -- that "WE" forgot to do something right, on time, or in the never-home's half way of doing stuff.

    Add to this, two sons -- one in college and one in high school. "WE" need to go shopping for x-item; or "WE" need to be at Scouts by x-time. Somebody please remind me why I volunteered for Scouts? I'm not even a "Boy"! Never have been!! WHUCK!?!?!?

    God forbid that I should say "WE" need to carry out the trash, feed the dogs, or anything that even remotely sounds like that. Because, God forbid, I might have suggested that "THEY" (hubby or sons) get off the computer, TV, PlayStation to do work ... at home ... on the weekend ... instead of whatever they thought they wanted to do.

    Oh, and please God-shoot-me-now, if I were to ever have a "sick day". The Royal-pain-in-the-arse people in my home -- IN MY HOME -- would fall apart. "WE" can't find ____ item in the kitchen. "WE" don't know how to use ____ common, everyday household appliance. "WE" don't know what to make for supper. "WE" didn't clean up the kitchen behind our bachelor spaghetti made with ramen noodles and 5-pounds of cheese mess off the stove or counter-tops. Oh, and "WE" didn't do the dishes either. So, now that you're well (or at least not laying in bed!) ... you can get ill again at the site of the mess that "WE" left behind for you ... because "WE" love you, Mommy/Honey/Sweetie.

    Really, "WE" need to grow-up! After all, "WE" (the male parts of "WE") are 16 ... 19 ... 45 years old. Seriously.

  19. You cooked dinner and all they could come up with was to ask where the sour cream was? Someone was really asking to get throat-punched, IMO.

  20. @Marcy from - Lydia here! I'm a jackass who accidentally deleted your comment because she has stupid fat fingers and shouldn't be allowed to use an iPad because she accidentally deletes really awesome comments from really awesome people. I'm sorry!!

  21. I have just one question... Matt, are there any more like you who are single??? :)

  22. I can attest that Matt is awesome as he is a friend of mine from High School. The only thing this rant is missing are the ten million cell phone calls to locate the requsite sox, pants or missing glove. I am traveling in May and I think I may just sabbotage the cell networks in Disney so I don't have to hear the calls. Maude help me!

  23. Sigh. You can do Tasks 1 through 1000, but if you forget to check the box next to Task 629, you WILL hear about it.

    It's so frustrating, but thanks for turning it into a hilarious post!! I loved this. Esp the part about your math/computer-degree-holding husband not entering a 16-digit code. *facepalm

  24. I sure hope to high heaven there are more like me that are single, cause I'm scared of a world being run by dudes like this!!!!! Holy carp, man! Hike up that skirt and take control!!!!

    Laura, thanks for the props! I am what I am muchly because of my awesome wife who doesn't cut me a shred of slack. If I can't find my socks, guess what? Dad's going sockless!!! I am a better husband, father and friend because of her.

    I love this site, gives me a laugh. I can identify with a lot of the rants on here, and there are many times I come home from work, and the house is in chaos, and my wife looks at me like with this sad look of near insanity. And.I.Get.It. I get why there is toast in the toaster oven with the peanut butter already on it, why the veggie drawer in the fridge is now the garage for Little Bub's matchbox cars, and why anyone who steps foot into the basement gets hit with a barrage of nerf darts from the couch cushion fort.


  25. If God forbid I ever die first, my poor hubby will have to move into a shelter cause he cannot/willnot learn what all the accounts are. I'm probably will be left to rot in the back yard with the dogs picking my flesh cause he won't be able to access or know how much money we have and how to feed them, the baby and himself. Oh God, please let him go first, at least I KNOW where the life insurance policies are.

  26. You are a saint and will surely be canonized after you're gone. In the meantime, let's hope that our kids will one day marry people who put them in their place in regards to this "We" business.

    In our house, I am also apparently the only capable of taking care of the Netflix queue, grocery list and online banking. Also, when we visit our investment advisor to find out the status of our humble estate, the advisor has already learned to address all questions to me, for he has learned that I am the only one who can answer complicated queries such as, "How much do you currently pay in utilities? What's your 401K contribution percentage?" My husband is unable to answer these types of questions, for he is A BANKER.




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