I won’t deny that it feels luxuriant to have a male in my life who is practical and handy. He can jury rig things to work and devise more permanent solutions also. I love being able to ask if he can have a look at things and maybe help me out.
He can and he does.
The trouble is, I fall neck-deep into normalization. That is, I assume that just because he has looked at things in the past and has come up with workable solutions, he is always going to do so.
That’s my greedy, entitled self surging forth.
I had been on my own for all intents and practical purposes for a while before meeting him. Having a really ‘unhandy’ father and subsequent husband, had taught me that repair jobs were up to me if I thought them necessary. I often did and I developed a naive faith in the Holy Trinity. Namely, that packing tape, dental floss and staples would fix most aggrieved situations.
They did! I was a convert!
Then along came boyfriend and started fixing things
showing off his expertise. I was so impressed, so thrilled. He very magnanimously offered to fix all of those tedious little faults, like squeaking doors and blown light bulbs and defective smoke alarms: I was so very grateful.
Except he and I don’t often coincide in the daytime. I work 8 until 7.30; he does 7 until 4. He has Saturdays off; I have Thursdays: we are giving nocturnal loving a dedicated, non-vampirical boost. The relationship is fine but it just doesn’t seem to have time to embrace the regular weekend drag of most couples. Drag means necessary laundry, cooking, dishes, shopping and housework. Oh, and minor repair work.
He has lots of things on his mind; I don’t want to remind him more than twice because that means I am nagging.
Often, I just try to fix it myself and, more and more, I try not to mention it in the first place. I don’t want him to feel bad that he didn’t remember, and hasn’t fixed it. I also don’t want to see myself as using him if he does it, or resenting him if he doesn’t.
Some things I don’t have technical knowledge to fix. A lot of men know a lot more about how to handle the situation than I do. I am sure, however, that a lot of women also feel the same way.
I am prochoice. That is, I can relate to both points of view, with a bias towards feminism. But I figured that squeaking door handles, after five months, didn’t exactly have a moratorium on complicated fixing effort.
I don’t have oil to use on the door hinges. I went outside tonight and used a substiture. It really was not good that the lady across the way came over to compliment me on my DIY attitude. She genuinely was applauding my efforts but her enthusiasm faltered just a tad when she asked what sort of oil I used, and glanced down at the container in my hand before I could whip it out of sight, and manufacture an expedient lie.
There is just no way I was able to pass off ‘SuperConcentrated Body Glide’ as the latest automobile super tool.
There was no hinge oil, even though the subject had been raised more than seven months before.
Duct tape, dental floss and staples wouldn’t help this one.
I am using to speaking in the language class of ‘woman substitute’. There are always things that might do instead, at a pinch.
I maintain that using silicon lube for hinge squeaks shows lateral thinking and much intelligence.
Or, failing getting anybody to believe that excuse, simply that cultural differences can be awkward in promoting cross cultural science projects.
I resent the boyfriend for putting me in this position.