Equal time: a male response to Kelly

Editor’s Note: In the interests of equal time, fairness and well, just because it’s so darn fun, we celebrate this Valentine’s Day by offering space for a rebuttal of our popular Sunday columnist, Kelly Hockenberry by her husband, Joe.

By Joe Hockenberry, Special to The Times

UTColLogoJoeHockenberryI walked into my Monday morning hoops game this past week and was greeted with the following:  “Man, your wife not only threw you under the bus, she backed up and got you twice!”.  I have lightly threatened to respond to these unwarranted attacks in Read My Lipgloss in the past, but hey, it’s all in fun, right?  But when my hoops buddies can no longer look me in the eye, it’s time for action.

I won’t spend a lot of time defending my own behavior.  I must admit, I do like me a good movie when I’m under the weather.  It’s inspiration.  If Jason Bourne can walk away from that car accident, I can probably make it downstairs for more tea.

No, I’m going on the attack.  Unlike my wife, my comments are not general to an entire gender so please hold the hate mail.  That being said, let’s review a few comments from my darling, beloved, “in sickness and in health,” Kelly’s post:

“The beds are made” – congrats.  That was a tough 3 minutes.

“Dishes loaded in the dishwasher, emptied and put away” – excuse me, isn’t the hard part being done by the machine here?  But I organized them all very well so the machine could do the work.  3 more minutes.  What is this, a POW camp?

“Laundry washed and folded (and in baskets….I’m not a miracle worker)”  Ignoring the similarity to washing dishes, are we comparing taking the folded clothes, opening a dresser and dropping them in with teaching a blind and deaf woman to speak?  And don’t get me started on whether the clean clothes can be worn.  Honey, thanks for doing the laundry today.  You’re welcome.  So I can wear that great shirt to work tomorrow.  Sure, if you don’t mind being mistaken for a raisin.  But that’s for another post.

“Breakfast, lunch and dinner served daily”.  Somehow, the kids and I pouring Cheerios into a bowl has translated into serving breakfast.  No one is home for lunch.  Dinners at our house are usually balanced, and healthy meals that taste great.  Kudos to Kel.  However, during “sick week,” dinner typically devolves into something like “breakfast for dinner” or “fend for yourselves.”  Breakfast for dinner sounds fun; what are we having?  Well, what did you have for breakfast?  A frozen waffle in the microwave.  Well we’re going to spice it up and put them in the oven for dinner.

“Make-up on and hair is brushed” Now my wife is a beautiful woman, but I’m not sure where she is going with this one.  A little grooming isn’t going to make anyone forget the hacking, coughing, and same sweatpants on day 4.  Even the Stink Bugs fly by and say, “uh, no thanks.  Catch you next week.”

Well, that’s all I have room for.  Hopefully I can walk into basketball tomorrow morning, head held high, and get a few high fives for saving the dignity of men everywhere.  Or not.

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Tags: housework, illness, men and women, opinion, rebuttal
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4 Responses

  1. Well, it’s been nice knowing you, Joe.

  2. While I agree with Kelly that the sniffles will incapacitate a man, I suggest a monthly ‘Joe’s Rebuttal’ column. (However I’m sure he has enough to issue a weekly response)

  3. I support you Joe, but probably bad timing writing this on Valentines Day! Agree 100% on the laundry thing. It’s not like she’s taking the clothes down to the stream and beating them against the rocks. Its probably more effort to get up and go to the bathroom than it is to throw a pile of clothes into the washer and hit start. The folding is where the work is, so got to give her props on that, although based on your description its sounds as if she’s folding them like a teenager when he’s told to clean his room. Good luck!

  4. You’re saying it’s not that hard for Kelly to get out of bed and do a few household chores when she’s sick. So aren’t you making Kelly’s point? If it takes two hours of bed rest and heroic inspiration to go downstairs to make yourself a cup of tea, what would it take for you to do a chore that doesn’t directly benefit you?

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