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The Honolulu Advertiser
Posted on: Monday, July 8, 2002

Dating game jinxed by those annoying household chores

By Ken Rickard

Six months.

That seems like a nice round number.

At least one date every six months shows that I am still trying, right?

Don't get me wrong, I would like to date more often, but it is always a stressful endeavor. (And I'm not including fear of rejection.)

There are the questions of what to do and where. Should I go casual, bust out the aloha print or press the slacks?

And what do we do at the end of the evening? We can't come back to my place because it's a mess.

Not that I'd expect a date to come over. But I'd better tidy up. Just in case

You know what it's like.

There is the pile of clean clothes next to the pile of dirty clothes. Most of the time you can't tell which is which, so both get tossed into the hamper and you're forced to do laundry every day for an entire week.

The sink is full of spoons and forks. They are all sitting in cups of water because if they can't be clean, they may as well be soaking. There are no plates because you've been picking at left-over plate lunches for a month.

In the kitchen, you notice a blackish goo all over the stove-top which turns out to be a mixture of grease and dust. You grab the sponge and try to wipe it, but that just creates a large abstract blob of streaks. Of course some spray cleaner would do the trick, but you've used it all in your truck after the shoyu chicken incident.

Time to put away the DVDs. You figure a few movies left out show that you are normal, but it needs to be a decent range of films, not just "Star Wars" and "Tron." This turns into an hour in the closet while you pore over the movie collection and wonder when you bought all of these movies and what were you thinking when you bought them.

This little diversion has caused you to forget that one unlabeled videotape that is left in the VCR. You know, the one that will get you into trouble.

Off to the bedroom, where you are certain you will not end up. But you have to clean it. Just in case.

The sheets need to be washed, but you figure that making hospital corners will give the appearance of cleanliness.

You try to vacuum the carpet but end up just fumbling with all the attachments. Then you notice everything is dusty, so now you have to wipe everything down.

You take the dust rag to the hamper and get ready to take a shower and discover the worst of all messes in the single male's apartment: the bathroom.

Time is running out, so everything on the counter gets thrown under the sink and a quick wipe takes care of that area.

Now it's into the shower, to scrub it and bathe at the same time. (That new cologne I'm wearing? Tilex.)

You're almost out of time and you've only got five minutes to dry off, shave and get dressed in a shirt that could really use some ironing.

Needless to say, no matter how well the night goes, she doesn't come over. You were too prepared. (And you forgot to ask.)

But you had to do it. Just in case.

Yeah, six months.

At least one date per half-year. That's the only way my place ever gets cleaned.

Reach Ken Rickard at krickard@honoluluadvertiser.com.