While typing this, one of the men working in our house, asked me a question which I couldn’t answer. He and his partner are walking around my house in their socks, as though they live here shouting to one another in Albanian. It made me wonder about people who make a living doing work in people’s homes.
Don’t get me wrong, I understand that people need money. Moreover people need to work where they can find employment. However I don’t think everyone is cut out for working in someones home. I think it would be hard to meld into someone else’s world, if only for a short period of time.
I’m always amused by how many people prepare their homes for the coming of the cleaning lady. And once the cleaning begins, I’m not sure who is more concerned about the house us or the cleaning lady. It’s like we have to remind ourselves she is working for us.
Baby sitters are like this too. They come to take care of the kids and then after awhile, they are snuggling up on the couch with a blanket over them or enjoying dinner with the kids. I don’t really mind it, but I do find it amusing and curious. I don’t know that I could blend in so well into someones home. But these people hang out, enjoy our space as if it is their own, do their job and then leave. And with babysitters, it seems like many of them find it hard to leave once they’ve set down roots in the house.
What kind of person is drawn to connecting with another family so intimately and why? I smile wondering if we’ll soon get into fightswith the plumbers, babysitters, or cleanning lady over what show to watch on the tv.
Yesterday I went looking for a pair of sneakers for myself. I invited Ry to join me and promised I’d find him a pair too. Needless to say, most of the time was spent on him. I focused on price and familiar brands,like Nike, New Balance, or Adiddas. He immediately gravitated towards these black sneakers with puffy tongues, red soles, and skeletons on the side. It was an interesting moment in our relationships.
On one hand, I didn’t like the way the shoes looked and I was clear about that. And he was able to pretend like he was going to vomit when I pointed him towards traditional brands. I challenged him, “are you going to really wear those things or complain about them when we get home?” “I love them. I will wear them.” “Well lets run across the street and see what other choices DSW had. I was hoping to distract him.
I diverted him with shoes at Marshalls. For a moment, he considered Ben 10 shoes and then nixed the idea. So we looked for a pair for me. He seemed to enjoy playing shoe salesman and carrying boxes of shoes in my size. He used his persuasive powers to get me to buy the adult version of his skull shoes and a host of other shoes I’d never wear.
I was most impressed that he identified a pair of shoes that he liked, not ones that we wanted him to wear. The last time I did this, we bought him a pair of Vans slip-ons with flames running through them. In the end, we didn’t find shoes for me and bought the World shoes for him. Despite our differences, I really enjoy seeing how excited he is to show everyone we know his shoes.
My wife has made it a point to tell everyone that “his father let him buy those.”
My sons are part of the CD baby generation. We’ve been making CD’s for them since they were infants. Once however, they learned how to use the boombox, our CD’s have been fast forwarded, flipped out of the box, stepped on, and tossed around. It reminds me of the old Samsonite luggage commercial where the suitcases have been placed in a cage with gorillas. Unfortunately, unlike Samsonite or Timex, our CD’s take a licking and don’t keep on ticking. And like the sound of nails on a chalkboard, I hate the experience of songs skipping or jumping around mid verse.
So I called my resident music expert. You know the guy who knows everything about all types of music. The guy who actually owned a record store for many years-the guru of music. “What do I do about the scratchy CD’s-oh wise one?” He paused, closed his eyes, took a deep breath and said, “Windex.” “Did I hear you right-Windex?” He simply shook his head in that all knowing way.
From then on, we have saved or at least been able to extend the life of our CD’s with Windex. Simply spray it on and then re-play the CD. It was as remarkable as learning the magic of DW-40 and crayon marks. Unfamiliar with that parental tip, read earlier blogs.