Monday, December 27, 2010

"A Peeve-stipation Situation"

Regular readers here know that since I started “Building the Kingdom” as SugarAnne puts it, I have been working through several of my pet peeves with her. I have been quite the “peeve-ologist” – if I must say so myself.

Thanks to the consistent application of my trusty little wooden spoon, we (insert inclusive gathering arm gesture) now know the importance of pausing our online chat and give our husband a few minutes of our undivided attention when he gets home from work. We are now able to keep the hall closet door closed. We are now able to keep the three remote controls in their respective rooms. And, We are now able to consistently take our medicine.

I could’ve went all Chief Whackacheek on her and thwacked that booty for any infraction of any peeve at any time. But instead we were more like Hansel and Gretel picking up bread crumbs one at a time and taking several months to find our way “home” on these things. I have had an amazing amount of success with this method. Like I said (proudly buffing fingernails on shoulder), I’m a “peeve-ologist”. A patient “peeve-ologist” at that.

Unfortunately there’s one thing the ole peeve-ology degree didn’t prepare me for. Maybe I need continuing education. Perhaps it’s that “education never really prepares you for the real world” sorta thing. I don’t know. But whatever it is, it has left me unprepared to remedy what I call “peeve-stipation”.

That’s right “peeve-stipation”. We can’t seem to pass the latest peeve – not leaving recyclables on one side of the counter. To paraphrase her, I’ve tried to keep a sense of humor about it. I’ve teased. I’ve begged. And I’ve made empty threats. And now it’s officially a spankable offense. But it’s been a spankable offense for over a month now!

It seems it would be easy. All she has to do is stretch her arm out with the offending item in hand, let it go and watch the damn thing drop into the recycle basket. But noooooooo... apparently that’s too hard to do. The girl has been thwacked with her pants up, her pants down and “looking like a fool with her pants on to the ground”. And still!! she consistently leaves recyclables on the counter. Basically, she just sits there, pretty as you please, I might add. 

What is the noteworthy difference between this peeve and the other peeves we have passed this year with rousing success? The other peeves were something that she was in total and complete agreement with. They were something that she wanted to accomplish for herself – as well as for me. But this little peeve – as aggravating as it is – seems like it's all me. Now, I know this isn't true, but it seems like she could give a rat’s glute chute about it. So, although they sting quite deliciously, my little peeve-pats with my big wooden spoon may be nothing more than an uncomfortable inconvenience for her.

The inconvenience of the “peeve-pat” should be enough. And frankly, that’s all I have. Maybe I should get me one of those “W.T.F.!!!!!!” go all Lizzie Borden and 40 whack her into doing it. (That’ll be some Kaopectate for that ass now wouldn’t it?! Huh?) But I can’t (because I choose not to) and I shouldn’t (because that’s not how “ttwd” works for us). As a peeve-ologist I now realize that “ttwd” is not laxative for every “peeve-stipation” situation.

Besides, going Lizzie on her would only bring into question my integrity in “this thing we do”. An integrity that is dependent on me loving her and encouraging her, along with reasonableness of application. An integrity that, I might add, I am very zealous to maintain.

I've got a couple of other peeves in the pipeline. I just may have to pass this peeve in order to pass this peeve - if you get what I mean. For now, her uncomfortable "inconvenience" will just have to be the extent of my satisfaction.


  1. glute shute? LOLOLOLOL

    We have issues with similar dynamics. I try to make her care about them because her HOH cares about them.

    Actually, spanking is a kinda cool arrangement. An offense puts me in a good mood because I know what I'll get to do next. Even if I lose, I win.

  2. Maybe on this one thing you should just give up. Not everything now - just this one thing. Say "SugarAnne, I'll take care of all recyclables, just leave them on the end of the counter and I'll deal with them." I mean that way you don't have be annoyed by it. I teach school and I've found for the most part the kids won't do homework. They just don't do it no matter what. I stayed constantly upset and angry over this situation. So finally I stopped giving it (a little once in a while maybe) but I was able to teach without being upset all the time. For me it worked.

    You two are doing great and I know this is just a tiny blip on the screen. I'm really happy for you both.


  3. Collaborative Problem Solving would suggest expressing your concerns, (i.e. I don't like these recycle items sitting here cause a... b... c...), her job would be to empathize, reflect her understanding of your concern (this does not require agreement, just an ability to listen and care about the other person's issue).

    Then it is her turn to express her concerns regarding these items on the counter. Why does she think they end up there? What is her internal goal of leaving them there? Your job is to listen, empathize, understand.

    Next each of you get to think of possible solutions. This is critical... one person cannot be the genius. It has to be collaborative. Supposedly if a person has some buy in on the solution, they are more likely to own the solution and follow through on the remedy.

    If this does not work... then get a W.T.F. though for me, a W.T.F. would be more of a reinforcement than a deterrent.

  4. BabyMan, Good for you guys... 4 out of 5 isn't bad, right?

  5. B-man~ some habits are just harder to break than others!!! I have a habit of leaving used paper towels everywhere!! But honestly i do reuse them sometimes!! Lol but I know it drives my hubby nuts, and I'm not doing it on purpose to drive him crazy, it just doesn't bother me.. Maybe it's the same for sugaranne? Don't give up though, it may just take a little longer than the others to fix!! Lol. Maybe wait another month before going all Lizzy Borden on Sugar!!

  6. I must assume you have asked her why, and she has no clue as well? I don't know either, but it seems my husband has numerous peeves, some of which I just think are kind of silly. I do them for him, well I try, but honestly, how important are these things anyway?

    I guess I am just more easy going with most things. After 30 yrs of repeated asking, nagging, and whining, I still have used paper towels, cans, and sometimes cloth napkins in the sink with his dirty dishes. That bothers me. It's one of my pet peeves. He really tries to do things I ask, to be reasonable. I think bc he grew up doing things that way, he simply forgets. How hard can it be to put the trash in the trash and the cloth napkin on the side? I finally decided that some things I just need to accept. 3/4 of the time the napkins go on the side and now I shrug and pick the paper out. I figure that while perfection remains elusive, what we have is pretty darn good!

  7. Mick: Now that you mention it, a certain cheery-ness does come over me when I there is an infraction. Thanks for lending the proper HoH perspective.

    PK: I’d be more aggravated if I had to take care of it (even by agreement) than if I just left it there. I think I’ll settle for uncomfortable “inconvenience” being the extent of my satisfaction – for now.
    Btw: I think you’re a great teacher. Even as a parent I always frowned on homework. If it can’t be done in school, it shouldn’t be done(period).

    xantu: How very scientific! If I had to ASSess where we are in the process, I would have to say we’re somewhere between the words “remedy” (near the bottom of your comment) and the first “W.T.F.”.
    Although I may one day appropriate a “W.T.F.” I rule it out for this situation. It'd be a lot like taking a bazooka to a waterbug.

    ally: Not bad at all…not bad at all.

    Audra: I think you “get” her. She thinks so too (she says it’s a woman to woman thing) She’s made it clear (since the post) that she really cares about this. Perhaps I have another month in me on this. But I’m also moving on to my next peeve too. And “peeve accumulation”, over time, brings with it the built in potential for going all Lizzie.

    Sara: Audra “gets” Sugar and I think you “get” me (not a woman to woman thing in this case). The point of the whole post is that elevating these things to a level of importance that they are not worthy of is not an effective way to deal with them.
    And conclusively I must agree with: “I figure that while perfection remains elusive, what we have is pretty darn good!”

  8. Heehee...two ideas spring to mind.
    1) You, too, leave them there. At some point, eventually, she will run out of space and put them where they belong. or, 2) You put the recyclable container on the worktop!!!!!! Right exactly where she puts the stuff!!! (or, maybe for practical purposes, adapt this to a smaller version of it)

    There ya go! Don't say I'm not full of great ideas!
    Love n hugs, great post...made me giggle all the way through! xxxxxxxxxxx

  9. I agree with Daisy, if you let her leave them there long enough she will run out of room and not be able to stand it and toss them herself,, that is if you can contain yourself,, which I doubt LOL Good luck with this one, Galway

  10. surrenderingtoo.blogspot.comDecember 28, 2010 9:00 AM

    Sometimes we have to as the bible says 'continue putting up with one another' I am sure there are things about you that drives her bananas and she puts up with you (although the way I hear it; you are pretty darn perfect) in which case she is having to 'put' up with your perfection *L*

    With great loves, comes great sacrifice.

    In other words; go easy on her ..

    She paid me to say that. J/k

  11. Daisychain: I’ve pretty much done everything except put the bin itself on the counter. That may work for impact, but it’s not very practical. Probably drive me crazier. Glad I left you giggling.

    G‘giirl: You’re right. Can’t just leave ‘em there. I wouldn’t be able to contain myself. There is no possible way I could stand an accumulation. The bin is just too close. I’ve tried it in the past. I’d bugged my eyes out at Sugar (ahem), looked at the accumulated offending items, looked back at Sugar neck stretch added to bugged eyes, looked back at the items, back at her, back at the items until she got the idea (eventually by show and tell). She just doesn’t see like I see. I’m not actively trying to fix it anymore. Sometimes I’m gracious and ask her to clear it without the “uncomfortable inconvenience”. Sometimes I just reach over and get a spoon. The rest is aggravation eliminating history. Oh gosh no….you're pulling the Bible card out on me?! Okaaaaaay, if I must, I’ll put up with it. But I better get into Heaven or we'll be talking you and me ;))
    Perfection huh? Did she say that? Really? C'mon..did she? is truly blind isn’t it?

  12. bman i just know there is no dull moment in your house as there isn't mine either...o i can c me doing that same thing..i think I've shared befeore i leave doors, drawers, toothpaste cap off, i don't stack bowls good...tyler says he's gonna buy me those little kids stack blocks...God help my rear if he starts being a peeve-ologist lol

  13. surrenderingslowlyDecember 28, 2010 2:49 PM

    She really did say that :) I am in awe of the amazing love between you too :)

  14. daisy christian: sounds like a veritable amusement park over there for an HoH! No...insane amusement park...nahhh...insane asylum...nah...
    Well sounds like a lot of spanking should be going on!

    surrenderingslowly: WoW...I sure hope you're tithing on what she's paying you!
    Seriously, thank you very, very much.

  15. B'Man - Sounds like you and SA have made a lot of progress on your pet peeves. Congratulations! I don't really have an answer on how to fix the recyclable peeve, however, since being the perfect angel that I am (ha!) I nearly always adjust to TC's pet peeves without discipline (actually, that last part is true, lol!). We women are so different, and what one struggles with another doesn't, and vice versa. I hope you and SA find a solution to this one soon, although moving on, at least for awhile, might not be such a bad idea. I've found sometimes that the more you push for change the less likely it is to come. Of course, I don't usually push with a wooden spoon... ;)


  16. RW - you "perfect angel" you: The current level of progress will have to suffice for now. I dont' see any reason why ALL of my pet peeves should meet 100% resolution. To her credit she's much more mindful of this than she used to be.

  17. pleasing your husband should be a given, you do it because it's important to your spouse even if you think it's trivial or silly, would like to hear her side

  18. Anonymous: I couldn't agree with you more. But don't be too hard on her. This husband is quite pleased and this wife makes great efforts in pleasing. That's why it's okay to pass this particular peeve.

    Her side, by the way, is an open book on her blog, particularly this post here:

    Thanks for stopping by, you're always welcome here.

  19. Hi B'Man (and others),

    I'm a lurker on DD blogs, have been for a while now. This is my first comment! I really enjoy reading your blog and SugarAnne's as well. I'm not married, but I sometimes consider DD in the back of my mind when I think about marriage.

    My question is: what happens when the wife is the one with all the pet peeves? Let's say you have these pet peeves about cleanliness and orderliness - you hope that SugarAnne wants to follow them not because you can spank her, but because they're important to you and she respects that. The spanking is just a tool that you can use to make it really happen. In my case, my boyfriend doesn't care as much about cleanliness, while I have enough pet peeves that you could run power plants off the steam that comes out of my ears. I know he would want to respect me and try to follow them, but I don't get any tools to enforce it. Isn't that unfair? If the HoH has the higher standards, he can enforce them. If the wife has higher standards, she has to lower them to those of the HoH?


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