To heck with politics or sports. You want to get a passionate discussion started, ask any group of people whether the toilet paper roll should be hung with over or under distribution.
I’ve long been fascinated by the similarities and differences among us. We all meet people in our lives who seem to think and act “just like us”. There’s that warm instant bonding experience when you hit on an “exactly! Same here!” vibe and quite possibly start down the journey of friends for life. Then, suddenly, you learn of their unyielding preferences for things like toilet paper direction and you question their loyalty and intelligence.
It’s not just about toilet paper (should be over, by the way), nor even the debate of who does or doesn’t replace an empty roll, and whether or not they actually take the time to put it on the dispenser correctly. We all have our “right ways” of doing the seemingly most minor activities within our homes. One would think the dividing line falls somewhere between men and women. To some extent it may, but in reality, we all have our own methods, which may or may not have any reasons for being. And don’t even try to get us to change our ways.
Let’s take a look inside the dishwasher, shall we? (Yeah, yeah, I now the debate over who fills and who empties is a topic of its own)… are those knives and forks facing up or down? I grew up as a put ‘em down person, but that was for a very good reason. My brother was blind, so it was a safety move to put all pointy things down rather than sticking up where he could get impaled for simply trying to be helpful. And we kids certainly wanted equal distribution of chores. But then I married a “points up” kinda guy. His reasoning was that the ends of the utensils get cleaner by being positioned upright. The result is a mishmash of both. On a recent visit to my sister’s house, I was loading her dishwasher, and my nephew calming walked up, picked out a utensil, flipped it over and said “we do it this way.”
While we are in the kitchen, how about glassware? Stored in the cabinet upright, or upside down?
Where is the hand towel kept? If you want to have some fun, move it to a different location and watch your loved one spin around in a circle with wet hands help up like a surgeon, with panic or anger on their face, shouting “where’s the damn towel?”
Before you go to bed at night, are there dishes in the sink? Or can you not rest until they are clean and the sink is empty?
And this leads to another fascinating area of discrepancy: the bed. Are you a daily bed-maker or a leave-it-as-it-is riser? Some leave it unmade and ruffled, preferring the unkempt inviting coziness of knowing at some point you will be returning. Others (like me) make it almost immediately. As a matter of fact, I’ve been known to make it while my husband was in the bathroom only to find out his intention was to climb back in. I even go so far most days to spritz the sheets with a linen spray. To me, there’s just something more inviting and attractive about a neatly made fresh bed. One R.W. threw me for a loop the other day when she said the making of her bed depends on her mood that day. I’m not sure I can comprehend that, but fair ‘nuff.
While most of our idiosyncrasies likely won’t garner quite as much of a discussion as ye ol’ TP conundrum, they are still fun fodder for pondering and debate. Toothpaste tube – push from bottom or center? Laundry – ok to leave in the dryer, or take out immediately and fold? Desktop – clear off at end of day or leave as is to pick up again next day? Pizza – cut pie shape or square? Ah, the topics are endless.
So the next time you have a virtual or in-person social gathering, launch some of these out for dispute. Lord knows we have all grown excessively weary of the bigger topics of Covid, politics and health & safety. Let’s get into the nitty gritty of real life methods and daily habits for fun and amusement. But a bit of a warning – if you boldly assert to your BFF that it’s your points-up way or the highway, they may sit back aghast and proclaim “I don’t even know who you are anymore.” Fear not. Just offer them a drink.
From your upside down glassware.