Every good teacher knows that sarcasm is never a good idea when it comes to building relationships with students. The same is no doubt true for all interpersonal connections, yet I cannot seem to avoid it at times. Take, for instance, the issue of an unkept kitchen.
Please understand that I am no longer capable of cooking and cleaning to the extent that I used to be, and therefore, rely heavily on my husband, so I have no right to complain. That didn’t stop my frustration from pouring forth when, for the umpteenth time, I found the sink full of dirty dishes, the counters covered in crumbs and grease, and the stove top still bearing the pans from my husband’s last culinary foray. I, who subscribes to the clean as you go theory, do not like to start my day (or any part of the day where I need to prepare food) with a dirty kitchen. For the most part, I dig in and clean up his mess before starting anything new, in this case, to make a cup of tea.
Today, for some reason, it felt overwhelming. Maybe it was the debris floating in the slimy, cold water in the sink, or the sticky collection of spoons and knives clotting on the counter – whatever it was, I wanted to nag. Badly.
Nagging, however, is not my m.o.
It suddenly hit me that my husband, the planner, the corporate problem-solver, the go-to man to get a job done (other than housework) is actually a closet scientist, and that what appears to be a disaster is actually an experimental breeding ground for his scientific study. Arming myself with this sarcasm, I left the mess and retreated to the bedroom, waiting for him to come home.
I must have drifted off, for when I awoke it was to the sound of a loud pop and a cry of alarm.
“I just blew up an egg in the microwave!” he called from the kitchen. “It was an experiment that went awfully wrong.”
Turns out there is truth in humour, even sarcasm.