We have a rule in our house that every Sunday morning the boys have to clean their rooms and bathrooms.
Unlike many expats, we don’t have a helper (FDW, maid, whatever you want to call them) so the boys are responsible for their own mess. I feel that at the ages of 13, 15, and 16, they are more than capable of cleaning their own rooms, changing their own beds, wiping down their bathrooms…in all their disgusting boy glory, throwing out trash, etc. Not only are they capable but, considering the fact that in a few years they will all be heading off to university and will have to take care of these things on their own, they need to master these tasks now.
I’ll start adding in the laundry soon, but with my microscopic washer, it’s just easier if I do it for now. Actually, part of it is that I’m not willing to wait for them to flip loads. I know, I know. Patience is a virtue I don’t have much of.
Anyway, back to the rooms.
So, here’s my issue. This weekend, as I was checking to see that they had done what they were supposed to, I noticed that one bathroom was not up to spec. Not only was it not up to spec, it looked as though it hadn’t been touched in more than a week.
To be fair, I was tired and somewhat cranky (or extremely cranky) and wasn’t cutting anyone any slack but what got me was this…
I actually saw this teenager take our industrial steamer into the bathroom and, get this, wave the cleaning head at the toilet.
Yes, you heard me, he WAVED it at the toilet as though it were a magic wand. He hovered that bad boy over the toilet seat as though all the nasty bits were going to disappear just because he willed it so. Poof! Be gone! Who does he think he is? Harry Potter?
If he could have wiggled his nose like Bewitched’s Samantha, he probably would have tried that as well.
He then put the steamer away and tried to call it a day.
Yes, I was tired and, yes, I lost it.
It’s not pretty when I lose it. It’s like ugly crying, only yelling. Zach likes to call it “rage mode” and sadly, that’s probably pretty accurate. I’m not proud that it happens and, fortunately, it usually takes a fair amount before I freak, but stand back when it happens.
This was, clearly, a stand back moment.
I don’t know if this was the beginning of him trying to let it get so gross that I’d break down and do it for him but, if so, he was sorely disappointed. If he hadn’t have of sucked it up and done it properly with the steamer and bathroom cleaner that Neil quietly got out and handed him, my next suggestion would have been to try using his toothbrush.
So, here’s what I want to know. Is it teenagers in general, teenage boys, or just my boys that are adverse to cleaning properly?
I mean, seriously, it didn’t take him much longer to actually clean the toilet than it did for him to wave the steamer at it. And now, at least, it’s not disgusting to use all week.
Sometimes, I just don’t get it.