Sunday, August 5, 2012

Of Birth Order and Underwear

It has been more than eight days since I have washed a pair of Youngest's underwear. In that same time period, I have washed at least 10 pairs of Eldest's. If you were to do a headcount -- or underwear count, as it were -- you would see that each of the other human household members have had eight pairs of underwear washed in that same time period.


I used to fret about the lack of underwear Youngest put in for a decent washing. I ascribe to that first world adage. A pair of underwear a day keeps the ickiness away. [I will point out that the first world adage does not apply in a college dormitory setting, when turning the underwear inside-out makes said single underwear the equivalent of two.] [Another aside: why on earth do we call it a "pair of underwear" or a "pair of jeans," for that matter. I have since Googled it and know the answer but others will have to find out for themselves. You can click here for a direct link to said Google query. If you trust me, that is. And, as I have now essentially admitted to turning underwear inside-out in my college days, perhaps you lack said trust.]


At first, the kid was just wearing the same pair of underwear for two or three days. Blech. Constant reminders to "change your damn underwear" fell on the same deaf ears (or deaf buttocks) as the reminders to "clean your room," "stop hitting your sister," and "shut the eff up."


Eventually, he realized commando was more his style, and that's where we stand (and sit and sleep and play soccer) now.


Standing in direct contrast is his older brother, my first born, the one we call "The Fastidious One." So much of a spot of anything on any article of clothing, and it finds its way immediately into the clothes hamper. [Another contrast? If any of Youngest's dirty clothes can make it to one of the numerous hampers or bloody laundry chute for God's sake, it's because he's been taken over by the pod people (or his mother put them there).]


Eldest's room is organized. His clothes are sorted appropriately, even segregated, in their drawers (with white T-shirts in one stack in the T-shirt drawer and all others compiling the other two stacks). He puts everything away in his own room and throughout the house. He tends to his personal and dental hygiene completely as any germaphobe would desire. He also obeys his parents. And it is not just because he is older. He has always been this way. And Youngest has always not.


Typical first-born. Typical youngest.


Damn, I hate being stereotypes. But at least it's a push when it comes to washing underwear.


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