Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Indecision: Its what's for dinner

I've suddenly found myself able to participate in work conversations that I haven't been able to participate in for quite some time: spouse bitch sessions. Yes, I know Prof isn't my spouse, and yes, I know he is a Renaissance man and I have nothing to bitch about.

But we all know good and well that no matter how good I have it, I'm going to bitch.

The topic the other day was dinner. And who makes it. And who plans it. And who buys the food. And who cleans it up. Consensus was, if the woman didn't plan dinner, make sure ingredients were there and cook it, dinner would consist of cereal. Or McDonald's. Even when there are children involved. Children whose future success in life relies entirely on whether they consistently eat dinners that include a vegetable, a starch and a protein.

We have come a long way ladies, but we are still lagging way far behind on this front. Way. Far. Behind. Healthy, well-balanced meals seem to be something that the male mind just can't wrap itself around. A well-balanced meal to them is one they can eat with one hand while playing x-box. So why do we care so much about it?

I've asked myself this question an awful lot. Mostly right after I stop at the market on my way home from work to get the ingredients for the several healthy meals I have cooking in my head. Then think about how long its going to take to cook the stuff. Then clean it up. But really, why is it that I spend so much time thinking about this? Prof doesn't jump up at 7pm on Sunday night when he realizes that he forgot to make hard boiled eggs for healthy mid-morning snacks during the week - why do I?

(Because I am insane and a bit compulsive, but that's totally besides the point)

So tonite, I had physical therapy for my hip and was going to be late getting home. I thought maybe Prof might want to start dinner before I got home. I'm silly that way.

Me: "Wouldn't it be nice if you had dinner waiting for me when I got home?"
Him: (laughter)
Me: (silently - "why is that funny?")
Him: I wouldn't know what to make.
Me: We have butternut squash, and sweet potatoes and fake turkey. And stuff for burritos. And, fresh green beans.
Him: How long does the squash get cooked?
Me: 45 minutes to an hour.
Him: What about the potatoes?
Me: 10 minutes in the microwave.
Him: I'll just wait for you to get home.
Me: (silence)

And I have one of the GOOD ones!!


Anonymous said...

Yes, this is a constant complaint in a significant minority of couples and families, especially if it's not something that was explicitly discussed before couplehood.

I don't mind cooking (I'm a male and the primary breadwinner; my wife works part-time, no children). The only thing I ask that if I have to cook, she let me know a little bit longer than 10 minutes before dinnertime.

But yeah, like finances, chores, laundry and children, this is a major topic of discussion before you get married or start living together. It's always best to talk about these major issues BEFORE you make the leap; after, it can be a source of major disagreement.

And if you are in the 'after' state, you should sit down and have a serious face-to-face instead of letting it simmer. Simmering does no one any good...

kristen said...

Baby steps... buy ingredients and then email him recipes. Easy ones.

Get him used to the idea...

Also, I wish I could convince j that cereal is acceptable dinner!!!