Dear Roomie #3: Cleanliness is next to… well just be clean won’t you? (pt 2/2)

January 10, 2010

#2: Kitchen

Just as the bathroom is his duty, the kitchen is mine. However… When, I’ve brushed my teeth, I rinse out the sink. When I’ve used the facilities, I flush and clean up any messes I’ve made (this is in theory, as I don’t make messes whilst using them). When I’ve showered, I rinse out the tub and hit the button on the shower-cleaner-dispenser-machine-thingy. In short, I help to make his job easier. Even though the kitchen is my domain, simple requests such as “please rinse off your dishes when you put them in the sink,” and “when you spill something, wipe it up right away so it doesn’t stain,” are not, in my opinion, over-the-top. Another point of interest when it comes to my roomie and dishes: he uses a new item each time. Two drinks = 2 glasses; One salad = 2 cutting knives, 1 cutting board, 1 plate, 1 bowl, 1 spoon, and 2 forks. You get the idea… it doesn’t take long before there are a LOT of dishes (pretty much daily, sadly).

Ok, so..after I start doing dishes this morning (b/c every pot,pan,dish,utensil,and piece of silverware is dirty–wish i’d have taken a pic) 11:24 AM Nov 28th from web

I got through three drainers full, roommate goes in 2 finish. It’s impt 2 know that I dirtied maybe 2 bowls, a fork, and a spoon. IRRITATING 11:26 AM Nov 28th from web

Here’s this situation (and why it irritated me): I had finally come to my limit. He was dirtying enough dishes each day for a family of four and I rarely dirty any at all. He was never rinsing anything off, which makes it very time-consuming to wash. So, I decided to stop doing the dishes for a week to make him see what it was like . I made it three days before I couldn’t stand looking at it anymore. I began doing the dishes at 10 in the morning. After I’d done more than half of the dishes and took a little break whilst the dishes in the drainer were drying so I could put them away (no he doesn’t do this either) and finish up, I come back in 15 minutes later to find him washing dishes.

You’re thinking, “Well, you should be happy he was helping clean up his own mess.” Perhaps, but I’d taken ownership of the situation and was extremely irritated. Also, he doesn’t wash them, rinse them, put them in the drainer to dry (or dry them), then put them away before washing another sinkful. He washes them all and finds places to stack them around the kitchen so they’ll all dry simultaneously, which he then never puts away so they sit there until I do. In short, he’s not helpful in the kitchen when he tries to help.

Dear roomie #6: No, it isn’t ok to go buy more cooking utensils and cookware b/c you don’t want to wash dishes (just more for me to wash) 11:16 PM Dec 4th

I’m washing dishes i didn’t dirty…again 9:26 AM Dec 6th

Dear roomie #10: It IS ok to finish the dishes that I presoaked in the sink (you know, the last two of FIVE drainers-full that YOU dirtied). 4:48 PM Dec 8th

Yes, sadly, he actually went and bought more cooking utensils and storage containers so he could cook food rather than just washing the multitudes of utensils and storage containers we already have. Two days later, I got to the point (again) where I could no longer stand looking in the kitchen and began to wash dishes. It may be important at this juncture to let you know that I do have a full-time job (other than cleaning the kitchen). I spent two hours washing (and putting away) three drainers full of dishes, then put the rest in some soapy water to soak — to make them easier to clean. My dear roomie, who had been off work all that day, could have washed those dishes for me since I had lessons to plan and papers to grade, which I hinted at for 3 hours. Alas, no, he just walked past them all evening. He was nice enough to put the additional dishes he dirtied that evening in the water to soak, instead of piling the on the counter to crust up.

Dear Roomie: Watch as I take the plate I used for my grapefruit into the kitchen and wash it immediately so it doesn’t need doing later… about 24 hours ago

…maybe leading by example will do the trick? (Hope not…or there goes my blog ideas) about 24 hours ago

NO…THIS DOES NOT WORK. (well, not with him…he is immune to subtlety)

Dear roomie: Please do not eat the food I bought, esp. if you are going to eat it using 3X the usual # of dishes and not wash them after. about 1 hour ago

I bought some frozen tater-tots the previous day. I never would have known he’d eaten some the night before except I saw the lid OFF of the Fry-Daddy, which I bought him for Christmas so he would stop leaving quarts of oil in a pot on the stove for weeks at a time. I’d done the dishes the day before and the sink was empty when I went to bed. Lo and behold, there are three forks, a spoon, a steak knife, a bowl, and two plates waiting for me when I awoke this morning (he says he never eats). If someone out there could please explain to me how it is possible to dirty that many dishes for some frozen tater-tots, I’d be forever grateful.

#3: Shared Space

Every area of the house that isn’t a bedroom is shared space. It is this shared space that we both must look at and use. It is this shared space visitors get to see when they stop by. It is everyone’s responsibility to keep the shared space neat and tidy. Leaving all that to one roommate is a great way to cause animosity, end friendships, and ultimately end up losing your home because nobody will ever want to live with you.

Dear roomie#11: It’s ok. I’ll fit all the housework into the time left over after I’ve worked 70+ hours this week… cont’d 5:09 PM Dec 8th

DR#11 cont’d: I know it’s rough going into work at 5pm. So, you relax and I’ll take care of it.

The living room literally looks like 4 suitcases walked in off the street and exploded. The living room is where my roomie likes to leave his suitcases. There is clothing and there are toiletries that are strung across the room and on every piece of furniture. The dining room still has unpacked boxes from the move (14 months ago). You’re probably asking yourself at this point, “You moved from one location to another with him?”

Yes, I did… but this is an entirely different “him” than the one I moved in with when I moved to this city. The other house wasn’t the neatest place, but it wasn’t messy – and it certainly wasn’t dirty. Everything had a place, and it pretty much stayed there. (I concede, the bathroom was a wreck, but he even kept the kitchen clean before we moved.)

I’ve tried picking up. I’ve tried to coerce him into putting things away. I’ve tried mentioning it in passing…and telling him point-blank. The piles are just too daunting. To be honest, if I were him, I’d be scared of the piles too.

Almost everything I own, I keep in my bedroom. There is far too much “stuff” in this room for it to ever be neat, but it’s my room, and I keep the door shut. Do I like it? No, of course not…it drives me crazy. I’m just not sure where else to put it all. He has taken every other room of the house and made it his dumping ground.

#5: My Final Thoughts On Roommate Cleanliness

As I’ve said, keeping shared space neat and tidy is a matter of respect. He doesn’t respect himself, and doesn’t respect me. I’ve told him (and it’s kind of common sense) that cleaning a room can take all day… keeping a room clean only takes five minutes a day. Every time he cleans (not often) he is so proud of himself that he finally cleaned something he can’t wait to show me. Every time he shows me, I tell him, “Now you should just keep it clean because it will make your life easier and it will simply stay clean.” Every time, this falls on deaf ears.

In closing… Hope all my work gives HIM a sense of accomplishment. Blah. I need to move 11:27 AM Nov 28th

I’ve been looking. I probably will soon…

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2 Responses to “Dear Roomie #3: Cleanliness is next to… well just be clean won’t you? (pt 2/2)”

  1. kwbridge Says:

    Argh … it really bothers me when people use all sorts of dishes for something really simple.

    I leave dishes in the rack and then put the away when they are dry – that might bug you but I never have many dishes – well, not too often.

    I had to do laundry today only because I was out of underwear. I was tempted to go buy some instead but decided that was stupid. It probably took him longer to buy the new dishes then it would to wash the dirty ones.

    The only thing I miss about being married is that my husband was obsessively neat – if I left something long enough (not that long) he would clean it 😉


  2. That’s what I do… put them in the rack until they’re dry. Not ALL OVER the room lol.

    I have to do laundry today, because I do laundry every Sunday. I’ve plenty of underwear left. (It’s the socks I have a problem with)

    I’m not obsessively neat, I’m really easy to get along with…but…

    Thanks always for your comments =)


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