My husband is a neat man. Organized in a way that you'd wonder a few things about him if it weren't for the fact that he has bits of normal here and there. Like occasionally leaving an empty coffee cup near the TV. But only when he gets interrupted from his morning's routine. Something unexpected happens, like a phone ringing, and yeah, a coffee mug may get left on a table. But it's a momentous occasion, and the kids will point and screech in surprise Dad! you left the coffee mug on the table! Mom! Dad left the coffee mug on the table! Meanwhile, Mom has left coffee cups on the stove, on the island, in the microwave, on the toilet tank, and that's before 10 a.m.
To him, there is only one way to load a dishwasher: efficiently. He feels that if you take note, and commit to memory the exact pattern of plate and glass and pot placement, you will get the most bang out of your dishwashing cycle. Why waste time and brain cells loading the dishwasher a different way every night, just follow the pattern, large to small, glasses on top...and stand back and enjoy the joys of your linear plate lip line up. He'll tell me, You can't just stick bowls with cups and plates and glasses and hope it all fits. The care of this dishwasher loading, well, thank goodness I'm not the jealous type because there is a questionable appliance relationship here. *not questionable if you ask him, questionable if you ask me*
When the kids and I do the laundry, we let him take care of his own. Our clothes finds their way off the floor and into drawers. He takes his socks and underwear, and performs advanced origami folds on them that would win him a 4-H blue ribbon. His dress socks are rolled differently than the athletic socks. Which he keeps apart from the socks he wears only for snow shoveling...which need to be kept separate from the socks he wears only for working in the yard. My teen son comes home from school, sees me, and peeks under my pants leg, Mom. Really? My socks again? I tell him they're the most comfortable.
He keeps his pajamas folded and at the edge of the bathroom counter. I will confess here that many times during the month, if my day's clothes are of the comfortable type? They will assume the magical role of tada becoming pajamas at the stroke of midnight.
He feels you should stop and fill up at the closest gas station when you see your car's dashboard signal you're low on gas. Attributable quote: Saying you're a little out of gas is like saying you're a little bit pregnant. I convinced him to take his car instead of the minivan to pick up the boys from swimming tonight because we're on empty, and I was going to get gas later tonight, but then it got too late, and then it got to be almost below zero outside, and for sure I will fill up first thing tomorrow morning.
The evening routine in our house ends with him polishing his shoes for the next day, and placing them side by side with shoe trees inside. (I think I kicked my boots off in the laundry room tonight, I can't remember, I hope so. I'll look tomorrow...)
He likes his shirts medium starched, for his slippers to be kept upstairs in the bathroom where he changes after work so he can step out of his shoes and straight into them, and he likes to open the mail before he sits down to eat. And the night always starts out on a better note if I remembered to bring the mail in.
It surprises me every time I flip the garbage disposal switch instead of the light switch. When he sees me jump, he shakes his head. It's always going to be the one on the right.
He loves order and routine, it makes him happy, he finds it soothing after being gone all day.
And while I'm in the midst of the January Crabs, the kind where just the sound of him clearing his throat makes me want to hurl a handful of Luden's at him, I stop and remind myself of how he likes his world. And how it's not, because of me, and I think, A lesser man would've had an aneurysm by now.