Woman vs. Machine: Can I Make Room for the Roomba?

I have what is known as a domestic deficiency. One who suffers from a domestic deficiency does not enjoy living in cluttered chaos, she just doesn’t have the drive or innate sense to keep the house clean on a constant basis.

My mom used to sweep while she was on the phone. Or wipe down the counters, or unload the dishwasher. This would never occur to me. Vacuuming while on phone or while Jed is napping is out of the question for obvious reasons. My “disease” combined with the obstacles of motherhood led my husband to enlist some help:

iRobot Roomba 545 Pet Vacuum, from Sam's Club.

She doesn’t do windows or dust or mop. But on the other hand, she doesn’t leave me shaming messages on the kitchen counter that say, “Is too much dust and dog hair.” (True story. Scarred for life, thank you very much, Maria.) She’s slow, but thorough. And Jed squeals with delight watching her glide around the room, bouncing off the walls. At first, I felt threatened. Was my husband insulting me? What exactly was he trying to say about my housework? That a robot could vacuum better than I could? That I couldn’t handle housework, watching Jed and working part-time? What else are they going to come out with that robots will do better than me? (Please let it be a laundry robot!)

Well, I know what he was trying to say because I live here, too. I can recognize my shortcomings. I can make room for another lady in the house without letting in the green monster. Roomba can vacuum, but does she know all the words to the really fast part of Hook by Blues Traveler? Or can she peel an orange in one long curl? I can’t do the second thing either, but I know someone who can, and it’s not a robot.

Suck it in, suck it in, suck it in…


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