Friday, November 29, 2013

Wisconsin 101: We are not very good at standing up for ourselves

SH and I went to Santa Fe with our friends Pete and Julie. It was a weekend of sleeping late (as late as one can sleep with a skylight right above the bed) and eating. Not much else, which was fine with me, because I can't think of a much better way to spend a weekend.

Mostly, we ate green chile in any variation, but to celebrate Julie's birthday, we went out to one fancy restaurant, where I did not know how to interpret the menu and neither did anyone else. I was with some pretty bright people, so I have to say it wasn't us, it was the menu.

Our waiter patiently explained things to us. When Pete asked about the sea bass, the waiter, whom we'll call Chad, said that the sea bass is "an excellent fish that is redolent of the sea and not too fishy."

The salmon, however, did not "speak of the sea" to Chad. He was very careful to note that was his own experience and our experience might be different. "To me," he said. "The salmon does not speak of the sea to me."

The duck - ah, the discrete elements of the duck dish "allow the duck to do what duck does."

None of us knew what to say to that, although I was dying to ask, "What does duck do?" But I didn't want to look dumb in case everyone else already knew what duck does, so I kept my mouth shut.

I also kept it shut when I got my pork, which had a weird texture. I couldn't figure it out. I tasted a little piece and I didn't like it, so I ate the rest of the food on  my plate and some of SH's food. By the end of the meal - pork chop untouched - SH and I had figured it out: it was undercooked.

Undercooked meat really grosses me out.

But SH said we would just take it home and cook it and it would be fine. And that is what we did do in the end.

But in the meantime, Julie told me I needed to say something.

I didn't want to say anything at this point because there really wasn't anything to be done. The time to have said something was when I first tried it, but I didn't know what was wrong with it. I do not mind at all complaining about something when I am on solid ground, but if I think, "I just don't like this," I don't feel I can complain - I just feel that I have chosen unwisely.

But the pressure got to me and I said something to the busboy, who holds all the power. "Tell the cook that next time, he should cook the pork more," I suggested.

The busboy looked startled, but nodded, took my plate, and left. There. I was done. Confrontation dealt with and over.

Then Chad returned. "And how was everything?" he asked.

I felt a kick under the table.

I hesitated. Then spoke. After all, this was not an inexpensive meal. "I think my pork chop was undercooked," I confessed. "It wasn't very good."

Chad stared at me,silent for two whole seconds, which is a long time when a stranger is staring at you. Then he scolded me, telling me that the time to have told him was when I got the pork chop, not now. Which of course I knew. I felt my face get red. Nothing like a little shaming to keep me in line.

But I defended myself. "It took me a while to figure out what the problem was," I said.

He sighed. After a great deal of explaining of how things work at a fine restaurant, he said, "I could take your meal off the bill."

I reddened further. "That's not what I was intending," I said. "I just wanted to let you know." By now I was regretting ever having opened my mouth. I hadn't even thought of having it taken off the bill, especially because I had eaten everything else and intended to take the leftovers with me. I wasn't trying to get out of paying what I rightfully owed.

I just wanted to tell someone so they wouldn't do it again. It is one of my greatest joys to point out when other people are wrong, but I so seldom indulge myself, as it is not a good way to keep friends and friends are more important than being right.

He gave a tiny, almost imperceptible shake of the head, and walked away.

I just wanted to escape.

Three minutes later, the chef came out. She was concerned about my pork chop. Apologetic. I just wanted to stop talking about the darn meat.

"Your dessert is on me," she said.

Well OK. That's fine. We had planned to order one dessert for the table, but were having a hard time choosing. If we were going to get a free dessert, we would take two.

Chad returned after the chef had left. "I'm going to treat you to dessert," he said.

Wow! Even better! Two free desserts.

We ate our desserts.

Chad brought the check.

The pork chop was still on the bill.

As were both desserts.

That's when I said screw it. I am done. I am not setting myself up for scolding by strangers any more.

But I am not going back to that restaurant.

Wednesday, November 27, 2013

Marriage 601, Lecture 23: The basics

Me: Why did you marry me?

SH: I don't know!

Me: Why?

SH: Because I was lonely. Because I love you. Because you're good at [wxyz]. Because we have a common background and common values. Because I like being with you. Because you're a good cook.

Me: Not because of "A shared dedication to fixing the “ills of the world,” which were being addressed by the self-help, peace and antiwar movements?"

SH: No!


Monday, November 25, 2013

Travel tales: What happens in Memphis does not stay in Memphis

We were on the plane to Memphis from Atlanta. SH planned a trip to Memphis for me as a birthday present and a wonderful birthday present it was.

We were sitting about 12 rows back from first class.

I saw a soldier board the plane and walk past us to get to the back of the plane.

A few minutes later, the flight attendant started walking through the cabin. "Where's the soldier?" she asked. "A passenger in first class wants to give him his seat."

Well isn't that nice, we all thought. Someone who wants to make a small personal sacrifice to recognize the much larger sacrifices that so many of our military personnel make. That makes me feel good about being human.

And we all basked in the reflected righteousness of a Good Deed. We were complicit by our mere presence.

A few minutes later, after the soldier had taken the first class seat, we heard a loud, shrill voice coming from first class. She loved the military! LOVED it! God bless our military! she said.

A few seconds later, we heard, Girls weekend! Only rule is you have to eat and drink!

And then, We're from Salt Lake City!

I thought, She's not Mormon that's for sure.

Heads had started to lift. Eyes were looking to first class. I saw someone put on a set of noise-cancelling headphones.

We had not even taken off. The doors hadn't even closed. Yet headphones were being donned.

The loudness continued.

The guy sitting across from me muttered, in a thick Middle Eastern accent, Now we know why he move.

Shocked silence, then hearty laughter from everyone in our section.

Even once the plane had taken off, we could hear her. Inside voice! I called, but it did no good.

When we landed, I watched her stand up. She couldn't keep her balance. It was hard to watch - she was pathetic.

She stumbled off the plane.

As we disembarked, I expressed my sympathies to the flight attendant. It's so hard when they get worked up like that, she said.

We need to bless her heart and pray for her, I said.

I lost sight of her until we were waiting outside of baggage claim for Leigh, who had actually done the hard thing and gone inside to wait for us rather than do a drive-by pickup. I saw the not-Mormon drunk woman pull out a cigarette, light it, then put her arm around a cop. That's when Leigh showed up.

Look! I said. That woman was drunk on our plane!

Leigh gasped. She's the one who fell as she came into the waiting area!

We shook our heads. I put something on facebook about the cigarette to follow my previous posts

You can't even see the wagon she fell off of, my cousin's wife wrote.

When SH and I took a walk down Beale Street that night and saw all the staggering drunks (not the best face Memphis has to present), we looked for her. We didn't see her. I hope she was somewhere sleeping it off.

Friday, November 22, 2013

Wisconsin 101: Wisconsin granmas

I thought of my sweet Wisconsin grandma when I saw this post.

My grandma didn't drink. (Well, not this one. The other one did.)

She didn't swear. (But the other one did.)

She didn't go to supper clubs. (The other one did.)

But she did go to church not only every weekend but almost every day. I don't know if she was a bingo player, but she played a mean game of sheepshead, which is a card game I have never seen outside of Wisconsin. It is such a big deal here, though, that they have it at Germanfest. People go to this festival with the ham hocks and the beer (to be fair, there is beer at every festival here) and the pretzels. The first tent you see to your left when you walk in is the sheepshead tent. Germans.

She baked. She baked for her grandkids. One time, I visited her from Texas and she sent me home with a Crisco can (she did not waste) full of cookies. It wouldn't fit in my suitcase, so I had to carry it with me on the plane. I was walking through O'Hare with a Crisco can under my arm and people were looking at me funny, but they probably wouldn't have thought anything of it if I had said, "My grandma."

When I was little, she would put French braids in my hair and let me help her bake. She must have had the patience of a saint. I have seen those photos of my siblings and me helping and it's a mess.

She made almost all of her own clothes. She mended her pantyhose. She grew her own vegetables and canned. She baked her own bread. She didn't do this to be trendy, she did it because she was very poor when she was little and that's how poor farm people survived 100 years ago.

She didn't get married until she was 28. She only went as far as 8th grade, even though she was very smart. For several years, in the winter, she worked as a maid in Milwaukee in one of the grand houses on the lake. She would walk on her day off rather than take the streetcar so she could spend her money on a chocolate bar.

At her 50th wedding anniversary, she wore her wedding dress. It fit.

She painted. She painted whatever she could. Every Wednesday, she went to Mr O'Brien's art class. Some things she painted OK - flowers - but others, like people, you could tell she lacked the technical training.

If she could have, she would have gone to art school in Paris. That's about the only personal thing she ever told me. I had no idea. I had no idea that this super competent, raised seven kids of her own plus another several foster kids, always the first one there when someone needed help person wanted to go to art school. In Paris.

That's my grandma. She would have been 100 years old this year.

Wednesday, November 20, 2013

Wisconsin 101: In the end, we all dress for winter anyhow, so it doesn't matter

You guys, I hate shopping.

I like getting new stuff, but I hate the process of getting it. Of going to the mall.

I do like shopping online, especially if I am supposed to be doing something else, like working. I like looking at shoes and dresses. (Why won't manufacturers put sleeves on their allegedly "career" dresses? Where is it that professional women go sleeveless to work? Armpits do not belong in an office. Nor do bare shoulders, Mandy. I thought I was the only one who noticed her inappropriate outfits, but a male co-worker referred to her today as "Low-cut Mandy.")

Online is a great place to browse. I have even shopped for men online. was a man mall. I met a really nice boyfriend on I haven't looked there lately - I don't think they are even in business any more - but it is kind of fun to scroll through the photos and read how people describe themselves. Memo to men seeking women: Most women are not going to be terribly impressed by or attracted to the fact that you are an Elvis impersonator, so you might want to leave that little bit off your bio. Or at least use a photo of you as you rather than you as Elvis.

But it can be dangerous to shop online. Everything looks good on a teenage model who is 5'10" and 120 pounds, which is both taller than I am and lighter than I am.

Not everything looks good on me. I need to try something on to decide if it is horribly nasty or bearable. Part of the equation is not wanting to throw up at the image of my almost-nude body reflected in the dressing room mirror under the dressing room lights.

Retailers! If I don't want to vomit when I see myself, I am more likely to buy your product! Invest in some decent lighting and good mirrors!

Unless it's all part of their plan to keep Women of a Certain Age from buying their product so as to preserve their image.

But that's not working. I saw a Woman of More Certain Age than I at the airport last week. But that didn't stop her from wearing a miniskirt, 4" heels, and a tank top that showed her bra straps, and from painting her fingernails (purple) as she waited for her flight to board.

Your brand is going to be destroyed. You might was well make some money in the process.

I had to go to the mall the other night to return some items I had ordered from Banana Republic, a store that used to be really fun to shop at but is now just another store. I liked going on a jungle safari. Life has changed. But sometimes they have nice clothes.

Then I went to The Limited. I would have been Mutton Dressed as Lamb for most of their items.

I walked past a J.Jill. I thought, "Those clothes might be OK. I need a black skirt." So I walked in.

And noticed right away that their saleswomen were wearing Sensible Shoes.

Which I admired.

Then I looked more closely. The saleswomen were Women of a Certain Age.

Not like Banana Republic or The Limited or Ann Taylor, where I am old enough to be the mother of everyone working, which is a weird thought because I don't have kids, so I don't usually measure my age that way, but one is forced to confront reality sometimes.

It was My Peeps at J.Jill. 

I looked more closely at the skirts.

Elastic waistband.

Then I looked at the one other customer in the store.

She looked like my grandmother. I mean my grandma 10 years ago, when my grandma would have been 91. And alive. But my grandma.

My grandma and I were looking at the same clothes.

I shook my head and left. I want to be the one destroying the brand, not fitting it.

Monday, November 18, 2013

Marriage 601, Lecture 745: Happy as a pig in mud

Bless his heart, my dad was a worker. He was not one to sit around and do nothing.

[Note that I use "bless his heart" in the good sense here, not in the alternative sense that really means "bless his stupid, moronic, idiotic heart" that one uses when talking about one's enemies or the people who annoy one. "Bless his heart" is a useful phrase, as it can be defended as a nice thing to say about someone to those who would take offense - oh, bless my husband's mother's heart for sending me a purple crystal seashell for my birthday! - but can have the hidden meaning of "bless her clueless, oblivious, doesn't care what I might really want despite SH's conversations with her that we really do not need more tchotchkes in our house heart" to those who know the situation. And in some cases - as here, it really is a nice thing to say. Bless my daddy's heart. He was a good man and a good father and I was lucky to have him.]

When German blood flows through one's veins, it's hard to relax. Your genes are urging you to invade Czechoslovakia or Belgium or Poland. Sitting still is for lazy people. Germans are not lazy. We are doers. I can't lie in bed on Saturday morning. Saturday morning is meant for chores. Laundry, changing the sheets, cleaning the bathroom, cooking so I will have something to eat during the week.

My friend Heidi just returned from living in Germany with her husband and kids. He was stationed at one of the air force bases there, but I think they lived off base. Heidi told me that there are many rules in Germany. The ones she told me about seemed to deal with ensuring that people keep their yards and houses tidy and that they not annoy other people while doing it. That's the Germans - lots of rules. An emphasis on productivity and efficiency.

How to you overcome such a tendency? If it's in you, it's in you. I myself, even though I am less than half German - my dad's side is German and Flemish (to the American eye, there is not much difference between these two, except some geography), my mom's is Slovak and Norwegian, have that tendency. That German can dominate and turn a person into a bossy know it all who is unable to relax because there are Things To Do.

My dad had even more German in him than I did. I at least have some Slovak and Norwegian, not that either of those, based on how my grandparents were, have a strong tendency toward lying around doing nothing.

So my dad was compelled to act.When he would visit me, he would repair things. He would patrol the perimeter of my house, identify items that needed repairing, and get to work - even though when he was alive, I was only renting and problems with my abode belonged to my landlord, not to me. When I took him to my friend Terri's lake lot to go out on the boat, he identified a problem with the boat lift and helped Terri's husband repair it. Sitting on the dock drinking beer was for lazy people or for people who had finished their chores. It was not for someone who knew there was work to be done.

My mom, who does not have as much German in her blood as my dad did, is the same way. She showed up at my house in Memphis with her gardening tools and her regular toolkit. She took care of my garden, replaced the missing screws in my doorknobs, and did other stuff I don't even remember.

SH is a relaxer. That is what I thought. SH knows how to relax. On the weekend, when I want to clear the junk (not my junk) out of the dining room (a dining room is not a staging area for projects in my world but for SH to limit his junk to his office, the basement, and the dining room is a major triumph of wifely request over nature and nurture), he informs me that he is too busy.

I tell him that knocking on doors campaigning for someone else's run for office is not "too busy." I tell him reading political screeds online is not "too busy."

We do not agree on this issue.

This is how he is when we are at home. He is a relaxer, not an do-er.

He is of English extraction. I have never thought of the English as a particularly retiring race - they did have an empire for a while, but perhaps they are not as compelled to act as Germans are.

But when we are in Memphis visiting my friends there, he is Mr Fixit.

Which is cool, because it gives me street cred with my friends. A husband who can fix things is a valuable man indeed. Not that my friends have incompetent husbands. Two of these husbands have renovated houses all by themselves. Another one is in charge of all the maintenance for a huge property. These guys know how to fix things.

I don't recall ever having seen a repairman at our house when I was a kid. I suppose it could have happened - kids don't remember everything - but when there was a problem, my dad fixed it. He fixed the car, he fixed the house. When he and my mom wanted a patio in the back yard, my grandfather and two of my uncles came down to help build it.

And we have only had a repairman at our house the one time SH almost fixed the furnace but it turned out to be a problem that was unfixable and we got a new furnace instead.

Back to Memphis. SH is always telling me he doesn't have enough time to relax, but when we were in Memphis, at Leigh's house, he noticed one of the pocket doors in her 1895 house that she and her husband Stephen have renovated - she even learned how to plaster - was off track.

"I can fix that," he said.

Which is a slightly fraught thing for one man to say to another about a man's own house, because what you are not saying but what is understood is that house owner man cannot fix the problem. It's a little alpha-ish, but SH would never have intended it that way and would never have wanted to do anything to give offense to our friends.

Instead, for SH, it's because he lacks a filter for that kind of thing. He has no guile. When he sees a problem, he wants to resolve it. He's an engineer. And why wouldn't someone who has a problem want it fixed?

Fortunately, Leigh and her husband are also of an engineering mindset and also want to solve the problem and not get into a contest about anything. Leigh was thrilled - she had thought they would have to tear out the wall to repair it. So SH continued the pattern that has been held by the men I love - that of fixing things that need to be fixed and doing things that need to be done. He and Stephen repaired the door and it was done.

Then they moved a dresser from upstairs to downstairs.

Then it was time for beer. Once the work was done.

Friday, November 15, 2013

Marriage 601, Lecture 314: Yes I know I am a snob

Me: What would you do if you had a client who wanted you to decorate around a Thomas Kinkade painting?

My friend the decorator: A what?

Me: You know. Thomas Kinkade. That guy whose art is mass produced and there are people in a factory who dot some paint on top of the prints.

My friend: That would never happen.

Me: It could.

SH: Unlikely. The universe of people who hire talented decorators like [my friend] and the universe of people who buy Thomas Kinkade paintings never intersect.

Me: But what if it happened?

My friend: I wouldn't be able to take the job. I couldn't do it.


Wednesday, November 13, 2013

Marriage 601, Lecture 652: My boy toy

SH: Look! Fritz* sent me a text - it's a photo of the Padron peppers that they grilled tonight.

Me: Let me see. Did you tell him that we finished ours, too?

SH: Yes. I told him I had grilled some trout, too.

Me: What did he say?

SH: Look.

[Shows me his phone. The text from Fritz asks, "Trouser trout?"]

Me: What's trouser trout?

SH: You know.

Me: No I don't.

SH: [Points at the relevant body part]

Me: Oh for pete's sake. How old is he? Twelve?

SH: Sweetie, we're all 12. You're the only one who's not.

* Not his real name but I want to protect the guilty here.

Monday, November 11, 2013

Marriage 601, Lecture 312: The Cheez-Its stand alone

On Saturday:

SH: I have to tell you something.

Me: What? [Dreading what I might hear - he is in love with another woman, he has lost all of our hard-earned money playing online poker, his parents are moving in with us, the basement has flooded again, he's been laid off from his job, etc, etc, etc]

SH: It's a confession.

Me: What?!

SH: You know those Cheez-Its in the basement?

Me: Yes.

SH: I opened them.

Me: So?

SH: On Wednesday.

Me: On Wednesday?

SH: And I've been eating them since then.

Me: You! You are a Cheez-It eater!

SH: And I put them back in their place on the shelves in the basement so you wouldn't know they were opened.

Me: You ate Cheez-Its without me!

SH: I'm sorry sweetie.

Me: You are not.

SH: A little.

On Sunday:

Me: I feel a little bit sick to my stomach.

SH: What's wrong, sweetie?

Me: I had to take an imitrex and they always make me feel kind of crummy.

SH: I'm sorry, sweetie.

Me: And maybe it's because I was eating Cheez-Its this afternoon.

SH: Cheez-It eater!

Me: Now I feel sick.

SH: Should I not have told you that I opened the Cheez-Its?

Me: Nope. You should have kept it all to yourself.

SH: But what if I had finished them and you didn't get any?

Me: Then I wouldn't feel sick. This is all your fault.

Friday, November 08, 2013

Marriage 601, Lecture 345: For better or for cutting up produce

Me: Here. I'm done.

SH: But there are some black spots!

Me: So? It's roughage. Eat it.

SH: I don't want to eat it. You're supposed to cut the bad parts out for me.

Me: No, I'm not. You can cut the bad spots out yourself.

SH: But you're the pear cutter in the house.

Me: I did cut the pear for you and it was a favor, not a responsibility.

SH: But you're supposed to cater to my wishes. I'm used to having my fruit cut up for me.

Me: No, I'm not. Just because you were raised by someone who overcatered to you doesn't mean I am going to.

[NB This is usually where I say something stronger, like, "Just because your mother thinks the sun shines out of your - you know - doesn't mean I do." But I didn't. Even though that is the case. That SH's mother thinks the sun shines - well, etc. SH can do no wrong in her eyes and I am the evil temptress who steals his love away from her because love is a zero-sum game. That's a different story, though. Also part of this equation is the fact that SH's parents peel every piece of fruit they eat. But they do not own a potato peeler. Just a paring knife that hasn't been sharpened in - well, ever.]

SH: That's how it's supposed to be!

Me: Funny. I don't recall hearing that in our wedding vows.

Wednesday, November 06, 2013

Marriage 601, Lecture 123: Not only do we not serve the Good Wine last, we don't serve it at all

SH: I ordered wine for the [political fundraiser that he is hosting at our house for a candidate I don't support but then, SH and I will never agree on politics].

Me: What?!

SH: Yes! You don't think I'm going to serve my Good Wine at this event, do you?

OK. So we might not agree on politics, but we do agree that the Good Wine does not get served to anyone but our friends.

Monday, November 04, 2013

Marriage 601, Lecture 135: While the cat's out of town, the mouse gets down

1. My boss left for vacation last week and will be gone all next week. I am happy, happy, happy.

(Delete, delete, delete everything I was going to write about work. Not prudent.)

2. SH is gone for the long weekend to see his parents for a command performance that one hopes will prevent any drama at the holidays, although I am not holding my breath. They will still get angry and still think that he should spend the holidays with them and not with me, even though he has not done so - except for one Thanksgiving where we both just rolled our eyes and he took one for the team - since we married. They would put up with my accompanying SH to their home if they had to, but they would much rather have their Only Joy all to themselves. Anyhow, enough of them. Pah, pah, pah.

So I have solitude at work and solitude at home, which means a bacchanalia of doing what I want to do when I want to do it.

I love SH, but there are times I miss being single and being the Mistress of My Home, with nobody else to offer an opinion or have a way of doing something. I like doing the dishes my way and I like eating what I want to eat when I want to eat it. I am not good at compromise. I think it's just my personality, although getting married for the first time later in life after many years of living alone can't help the situation.

So here's what I have done this weekend that would make SH hyperventilate:

1. I have worn his favorite sweatshirt, the one from Summerfest 2006, with the collar that is wearing away. Yes, I have my own sweatshirt, but it has a hood and if I lie in bed to read while I am wearing my hooded sweatshirt, the hood bunches up under my neck and it's a wee bit uncomfortable.

2. I have worn my biteguard. I usually wear it only to sleep, but I like wearing it at other times because I clench my jaw all the time (See: Work) and grind my teeth and the biteguard helps with that. SH does not think it is particularly attractive. Can't imagine why.

3. I have cooked and cooked and cooked and left the dishes to do until later because I have been cooking. When SH was a bachelor, he ate a lot of crap. He had things like Hot Pockets in his freezer. He had almost no vegetables because he hates chopping things. When he did cook, he would make a steak, which does not use a lot of dishes. But when I cook, I make things that have ingredients and everyone knows that ingredients require dishes. SH seems to think that the function of a kitchen is to look like it is never used.

He also thinks that a kitchen is a place where one goes to read a newspaper without interruption. But I think that a kitchen is where food happens and if someone happens to be reading the paper while I'm cooking, well, that someone can keep me company. SH is torn because he likes eating good food - which was part of the deal when he married me, a woman who cooks - but he does not like mess, his office notwithstanding. And, if challenged on that, he will point out that his office has a lot of stuff (ie, junk, such as training manuals from his job for products that no longer exist and newsletters about things to do on the eastern shore of Lake Michigan in 2011) but it is all in neat stacks.

But it is all still junk. If he were dead, that would be the first place I would clean out, not just because I hate all that junk but because it's about the only part of this house that has junk. Any portion of the house under my control - the CF zone, which can be reached after escaping over the wall near Checkpoint Charlie - is tidy and spare and uncluttered. I have nothing to throw away.

After his office, I would go to the basement and throw away all the boxes of SH's that we moved into this house over five years ago and have not been opened since. If you can go five years without something, you don't need it.

Anyhow. I cooked. I made 23 jars of pear jam, caldo verde soup, roasted beets, roasted red pepper and goat cheese lasagne, charro beans, and cornmeal pear cake with rosemary glaze.

SH thinks that food just comes. He is wrong.

Friday, November 01, 2013

Marriage 601, Lecture 62: Because I am the only person who likes living in a clean house

SH: Would you do me a huge favor?

Me: No.

SH: Please.

Me: No.

SH: Oh come on. I just want you to iron-

Me: I hate ironing. No.

SH: Please?!

Me: You owe me.

SH: Why?

Me: Because this is a huge favor.

SH: I do things for you all the time!

Me: Like what?

SH: I vacuum. I cut the grass.

Me: Those things are not for me. Those are for us. That's something you do because we live in this house together.

SH: They're for you.

Me: I used to do all those things before I got a job.

SH: But if I vacuum two weeks in a row, it's for you because if I lived alone, I would never clean that much.