"The penalty good men pay for indifference to public affairs is to be ruled by evil men." attributed to Plato

"Bad men need nothing more to compass their ends, than that good men should look on and do nothing." attributed to Edmund Burke

Let's between us make the world a better place.

Tuesday, 6 April 2010

Men are from Mars

Why is it that the Easter Bank Holiday weekend always gives us less than perfect weather? And it doesn’t matter when Easter falls! It is a moveable feast and can be as early as March 22 and as late as April 25. But whatever the date, the weather tends to be lousy and the days before and after the holiday tend to be lovely!

Actually yesterday, Easter Sunday, wasn’t so bad in the South of England in spite of some dire and gloomy weather forecasts but I know it was pretty grim for lots of other places and we had some terrible showers, some of hail, in between the sunny spells.

And now that most people here are back at work I woke up to a lovely sunny and mild day. Great, I thought, at last an opportunity to do lots of outdoor gardening jobs, generally sweeping and tidying up and checking on all the seeds that I have been sowing in seedtrays and pots for planting out later.

So I went downstairs for a cup of tea and a bowl of porridge to start the day right. I make the porridge in the Microwave oven. It takes exactly 5 minutes on medium and is always perfect.

And during that 5 minutes, and whilst the kettle boiled for the tea, I emptied the dishwasher and put all the stuff away, watered all the plants on the kitchen window ledge (lots of orchids, a strelitzia that I am really proud of, grown from seed, and several cyclamen), swept the kitchen floor, checked the temperature of the propagator where I have sown several varieties of squash, wiped the dining room table not done after supper last night, put in the fridge various food stuffs that should also have been put away last night, took a load of washing out of the tumbler dryer, and did all those things just in time to pour the tea and take the porridge out of the oven ready to eat!

And all this reminded me of a cartoon by Annie Tempest. If you do not know about the village of Tottering-By-Gently and the work of Annie Tempest you have really been missing something. Do visit her website. Annie is a fantastic observer of British life and the British character, but she also has an international following, as she “touches a note of universal truth in her exquisitely detailed and beautifully executed cartoons as she gently laughs with us at the stuff of life.” She has captured this Mars and Venus phenomenon in a wonderful cartoon, called “The Male and Female Characters.” In this she depicts on the one hand the woman doing all these things and more whilst the kettle boils to make coffee. When it is the man’s turn to go downstairs to make the coffee, he simply leans against the aga doing absolutely nothing whilst he waits for the kettle to boil! Life I guess was ever thus, and always will be.

So...I have spent all morning doing those gardening chores, and now I better go and fold all the washing and put it away and cook some lunch. Who was it I wonder who said that “a woman’s work is never done?”

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