Eat, drink and be messy
Posted: Wednesday, January 28, 2009 8:01 pm
I have two main problems — eating and messiness. Warning: “Type A” over-achieving people will have absolutely no idea what this column is about. And that’s OK. I’m willing to educate you. If you’ve been known to say things like, “I could never sleep with a dirty dish in the sink,” you might need an interpreter for this column. If you’re someone who frequently says, “No dessert for me, please,” you’ll not understand a word that I’m about to write. As for the rest of you fun-loving, though sometimes under-achieving, folk, it will all make perfect sense.
Here’s the deal. When I eat too much, I don’t want to clean the house. In fact, when I’ve eaten too much I feel like slinging stuff around the house and making it even messier. Right after eating two enchiladas, a bean burrito and chips and salsa, I never feel like scrubbing the toilets. Go figure. Instead, I feel like kicking my shoes off, sitting in the recliner and reading until I fall asleep. When I’ve eaten an ice cream sundae with my family, it never occurs to me that maybe I need to sweep and mop the kitchen. Wiping all those little ice cream spills off the counter before they get stickier doesn’t seem to cross my mind either. A brain freeze, I guess. Traditionally, there are certain foods which are more likely to bring on the bouts of messiness. Deep dish pizza, for example. (Must be the carbohydrates mixed with fats which cause me to want to watch a sappy old movie instead of changing the sheets on the beds.) Brownies are also the enemy. (Sugar mixed with cocoa makes me want to spend an hour on the phone with my friend in Texas instead of sweeping the front porch.)
If eating “inappropriate” foods brings out the messiness in me, messiness also brings a desire for “inappropriate” foods. Kind of like, “Which came first, the chicken or the egg?” When I forget to make our bed, I feel like making grilled cheese sandwiches cooked in butter for supper. When the house is neat and clean, I make grilled chicken and steamed broccoli for supper. I know. I need to see a therapist. When the boys make a fort out of couch cushions in the living room, it makes me want a cheesy bean burrito. When the boys are sitting at the table calmly and neatly doing their homework, it makes me want a fresh salad with red peppers. (Note: Because of the connection to stress-free homework time, we rarely have salad with red peppers.)
As a mature 45-year-old woman I’ve often told myself, “Lisa, step away from the brownies and pick up a broom.” Sometimes I’ve listened. Other times I’ve rebelled. One thing I know for sure. If I can manage to serve grilled chicken tonight, I’ll be able to put my shoes in the closet where they belong. If, in a moment of weakness, I whip out the waffle iron, I’ll have to look for my shoes the next morning. I’m sure they’ll be right there in the living room under the couch cushion fort.
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Published in The Messenger 1.28.09