I like doing dishes. I don't enjoy cooking, but I think I don't-enjoy it less than the Jazzman doesn't-enjoy it. If we're both home and I've prepared a substantial meal, he'll clean up the kitchen after the meal to compensate for my having prepared it.
Recently, there was a reason I wanted to do the dishes. I don't remember why. I just didn't want him to do them. I wanted him to be able to go off after his hard day and do whatever he wanted to do, which I couldn't imagine being washing the dishes.
As we stood there arguing about who would do the dishes, I was instantly transported back in time to around 1963.
My lifelong best friend (at that time, we were about five years into that friendship that still endures) was living with us for a month or so while her mother was in the hospital with hip or back problems. It must have been a Wednesday night or a Sunday evening, because Daddy was home. Daddy was out in his garage workshop, tinkering with one of the antique cars he was always rebuilding.
We finished dinner. Mother turned to us and said, "You girls do the dishes," and the incident began.
Whoever normally washed wanted to dry or some equally stoopid argument. Gail and I stood there going back and forth, arguing about who should wash and who should dry. I don't know how long this went on, but long enough and loud enough that Daddy could hear us in the garage, through several doors and over the jazz he always kept playing in the garage.
Before we knew it, he had stormed into the kitchen. (This was a man who never stormed anywhere!) He sent us each to a bedroom and said he would do the dishes.
Punishment? Oh. My God! He could not have devised a worse punishment. We both adored him. We knew how hard he worked every day. To have, by our hard-headed immature arguing, forced him to drop his beloved car-tinkering to wash the dishes was a worse punishment than any we could have devised.
This, my friends, is creative parenting!