Can We Talk About How Much I Suck At Doing Dishes?

Why it is possible for drones to do dirty work in battle, but there is not a machine that can clean the whole house yet?
Publish date:
December 26, 2012
housework, dishes

These are my freakin' dishes. Have a look. I finally washed them. This is the pile of drying dishes.

Let me tell you the truth about washing dishes. I would rather shovel stinky compost in the middle of the summer, or muck out a horse barn, than wash dishes. I would rather hike across a craggy mountain path with nothing but wild berries to sustain me than wash dishes. I would rather drive around on unplowed roads with no snow tires and rear wheel drive than wash dishes.

I do not understand the enlightened people who say things like, "I find washing dishes to be meditative and relaxing. I unwind at the end of a long day by washing dishes." I think they are jive-ass fakers. If they like washing dishes so much, I dare them to come to my house and wash mine.

I also do not get the people who say things like, "I love scrubbing pots. I am the best pot scrubber around." OK, well then scrub this.

This pot resembles so many pots in my kitchen. This charring was the result of attempting to make homemade applesauce with too little water. I forgot it was on the stove. So not only is it charred, it is charred fruit sugar, which is like caramelized charring. It is extra-sticky charred, just for my scrubbing pleasure.

Here I am, trying to loosen the char off this pot by boiling a stew of baking soda, water and dish detergent.

Do you see the spots on the stovetop? Those are evidence of my talent as a housekeeper. I am obviously wicked awesome at cleaning.

(Also, the baking soda boil didn't really work. There is still char on the bottom of the pot.)

I have tried everything. I have tried "clean as you go" and "wash everything as soon as you use it" (impossible). I have tried hiring a house cleaner to do my dishes (very expensive; not sustainable). I have tried sharing dish duty with my husband (he has no talent at doing dishes, either, though he tries to be helpful). All of it is impossible, a dream that will never materialize. Dishes are the bane of my existence.

I do love to cook. I am hosting a pop-up restaurant on January 28th (gourmet kosher vegan Italian food -- is it possible? Yes, it is, and 20 lucky people will get to gather round the table to sample the biggest smorg of vegetable antipasti and homemade ciabbata they have ever seen). I host large meals almost every weekend. As a result, I end up spending hours, every Sunday, washing dishes. I could be orchestrating a revolution, or writing a book, or drinking fresh carrot juice (just kidding, my juicer is always dirty) during that precious time.

I am biting the bullet and buying a portable dishwasher. A machine should do my dishes. When my next paycheck comes, I might also buy a Roomba. I am determined that machines should do all of my cleaning. This is a manifesto. I work in high tech. Now I want technology to do more than spread information in the flash of a moment. I want technology to actually help me around the house. Onward, women!

Please talk to me about dishes, or relationship with technology, or why it is possible for drones to do dirty work in battle, but there is not a machine that can clean the whole house yet. I think it is sexist. I think we need a Jetsons-type house-cleaning robot already.

XO, Chaya: @chayakurtz.