In the Chop


One of my great-grandfathers was a butcher. He was a laid-back, easy-going sort of fellow, much beloved by his grandchildren, my father included. After his day at the butcher shop he liked to come home and have a nap on the sofa. My great-grandmother Chloe, who was descended from royalty, and whose day began before her husband’s and ended long after took a dim view of this activity. One day when Grandpa Christ came home from the butcher shop, he found that his wife had taken an axe to the sofa. I suppose he should have been grateful he wasn’t on it at the time.

While I’d always understood this story intellectually, today it seemed to hit home in a more visceral way. Of course, Elmer was on the sofa, and I quite love my sofa, an old-fashioned dark red velvet number from Crate and Barrel. And an axe is so heavy. So I had to be satisfied with threatening my husband with the vacuum cleaner wand. I might have thrown the duster attachment at him, but he can’t prove a thing.

Tomorrow (well, today) a few people are coming over to celebrate our son’s new adventure in university. There was no time for lounging on the sofa. Or anywhere for that matter. “Chop” is a phrase used by sailors to describe short, steep waves moving quickly at an irregular pace. It’s quite challenging to sail through and some boats are much better than others. This is what the day felt like– one steep little wave after another. Just when it seemed we were getting something accomplished, there were nine other things that needed attention– and some people were watching television. On the sofa.

Why is that women help each other, we just do it. We work alongside each other– and though one may say to the other “What would you like me to do now?” a woman would never finish a task and then go sit down and eat bon bons. It just wouldn’t occur to us. With men it’s different. They might do what you ask– eventually. They will only do what you ask, not much freelance inspiration in the trenches. It never occurs to them to vacuum the damn lampshades.

Chop-chop, boys. Not much time left.

Target number 74 (Yes, down 3– it’s testimony to how stressed I am that I don’t even feel overjoyed.) Steps 4602. (Plus more than a 1000 towards Saturday’s count.)

Breakfast: two hard-boiled eggs, yogurt with granola. Lunch: half cup of leftover red bliss potato salad, two scrambled eggs. Two Oreos. Dinner: two tortillas with home-made moo shu chicken (and no the Chinese guy didn’t make it, I made it. lol) Two Oreos. 


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