I’m a woman who lives by the eight second rule. To wit: Anything that was originally edible that I was intending to put into my mouth, will still go into my mouth as planned, regardless of whether or not it’s fallen on the floor, under the couch, on my shirt, or into my running shoes, ten minutes after I ran a 5k in 90 degree heat.
I was about to tell you that I draw the line at my own personal dirt inside my own house, but then I remembered once devouring a bagel that had tumbled out of the bag into the shopping center parking lot. I’m sure I wiped it off at the time, but that was purely for the benefit of witnesses.
Oddly enough, or maybe not, I’d written that last bit this morning and wouldn’t you know it, this very same afternoon, my husband and I were walking in the mall food court en route to the restroom alcove, when a worker at one of the restaurants presented us with sesame chicken samples on toothpicks. We each chose one and headed with it toward our destination. A moment later, as I was entering the ladies’ room, I turned around to see my husband several paces back. “Why’d you stop?” I yelled behind me, chomping on my chicken.
“I’m not going into the bathroom while I’m still eating.” He responded, repulsion in his voice.
As I shrugged and continued on my way, he was not so far back that I couldn’t hear him mumble: “Class act” at the back of my head.
When I got out of the restroom and rejoined him at the water fountain… (yes, I did wash my hands. I’m not totally un-evolved. Although, I did get bored with the blower and finished my hand drying on my jean shorts… Anyway) As we walked back into the mall, (taking another sesame chicken sample on the return trip… well, she offered…) I told my husband that I could add his “class act” remark to my pig post thereby transforming his rude comment into art. He said: “So glad I could help.”
As you can imagine, my husband is not a pig. I tell him he’s a neat-freak, but more likely he’s normal and it’s just my ploy to take the focus off how bad I really am. It’s not that I’m ashamed of my behavior. I just don’t want to hear it. The irony is: I suspect my husband married me for my lack of tidiness. He grew up in a house with a neat-freak and ran to me in rebellion. It probably sounded good to him on paper at the time. He had no idea how bad things could really get.
For one thing, I eat in bed. It could be popcorn. It could be meatloaf. I also spill stuff a lot. Ketchup, chocolate syrup. I probably should wear a lobster bib all the time and carry everything in toddler containers and Sippy cups. And if I feel raisin bran crumbs under me in the middle of the night, you and I both know where those flakes are going.
As my husband turns over in the bed trying to pretend those ugly scenes happening in the dark just a few feet away aren’t happening, he’s likely envisioning in his mind a partition that would keep my mess from literally spilling over onto his side… and wondering if he’s the only spouse who suffers in silence or if there’s enough demand to bring his invention to Shark Tank.