Folks, this is a Neighbourhood only post, because it rants about someone who isn't a Vox member who reads my blog, namely my housemate James. Just thought I'd let you know.
I got an SMS from my housemate James today when I got to Penguin:
"There won't be a Wednesday night dinner next week"
Wednesday Night Dinners used to be Me, Cariad, James and Neph, now they are me, Damien, James and Neph
I quite enjoy our Wednesday dinners, something I've told him a few times. But I simply responded "Oh. Ok. Why's that?"
came his response "Because I'm tired of doing all the cleaning up for it"
I couldn't believe my eyes.
Short of removing dry towels or his washing from the couch (which I've typically removed from the dryer when I need to actually use it) to his bedroom and cleaning the kitty litter, I've not seen any evidence that he did any special cleaning for Wednesdays.
On Wednesdays, before people arrive, I typically wash up at least Monday and Tuesday's plates, and a few weeks I've actually washed up dishes from the previous Wednesday. Times I wash up from the previous wednesday are typically times I haven't cooked since the previous wednesday for whatever reason. There was one week where I washed almost everything on the Friday, asked specifically for him to wash the remaining few (5-7, rinsed but not washed) things I had neither time nor space for, and come that Wednesday, I washed those same things on top of the weekend's dishes. (It's worth noting that I don't live there on weekends, I go to great lengths to adhere to his enjoyment of having me there only 4 nights a week)
rather than burst into the rant you see here, I simply sent:
"Oh. You should have said something, asked me to help more. Told me I wasn't doing enough. I'm sorry! Honestly, I didn't realise."
This might spill over into the talk about chores that he mentioned 6 weeks ago.
On multiple occasions before, I'd asked him if there's any way he felt that I was not contributing enough, because I wanted to make sure I was pulling my weight. When he mentioned about chores one weekend, I asked him when I got back to the house what he'd like me to do, and he had nothing to suggest.
What I rather hope he's learning, and rather suspect he's not, is that, as my mother put it, "there are no good fairies".
I'm not going to reraise an issue that isn't actually mine when the last time I raised it he essentially said that he wasn't sure and would get back to me. The ball's in his court on that.
I'm not going to suggest that he drive to work to get his Ls hours up so he can get a drivers license.
I'm not planning on cooking for him any more, since he hasn't furnished me with any meals for weeks. (other than the Wednesday thing a couple of weeks ago)
The only reason I'll keep bringing his washing back in is because if I don't, it'll either be in the washing machine or the dryer when I need to use them, and I won't not do things for him to my own detriment.
I'm not going to stop washing things up. I actually need to use them.
I'd stop checking the meter box to see if we need to recharge, except that he doesn't seem to care about it, and I really don't want to throw out all my meat when the power goes off mid-weekend while he's not there to fix it.
Whatever he wants in life, it is up to him to get and/or ask for.
I'm diligent about paying the rent, I typically make sure there is power on the card, and I know whose turn it is to purchase it. I avoid using the land-line, and have told him that I will pay for any and all calls made on it, no questions asked, since he doesn't tend to use it at all. My internet usage is Facebook and Vox, basically, and he's actually been able to go down a download plan since I've been here, and I've offered to pay part of the internet costs. He's never been clear on what he wants me to pay for the net.
I have tried to be easy to get along with. I've tried to leave the smallest footprint that I can in his house. I clean the fridge occasionally to prevent mouldy food from taking over. (typically not mine, I might add) I've tried to be approachable about any issue he may have with how I do things or what I'm doing or not doing. I wash the dishes much more frequently than he does. I pay half the power bill, despite actually being there only 4 nights out of 7. I've either taken him to or collected him from work or both most days that I stay there.
I've been nice. He'll be much better off in terms of things at his house and simple house-knowledge stuff he didn't know before I moved in. He's made well over $500 in rent from a room he was basically not using by renting it to me for 4 nights a week. He can just deal with whatever.
I am not his mother. I am going to cease acting like one.
I'll pay my rent up until the date that I leave (pay that sometime next week), pay the power when it's my turn, and not use the landline at all. I'll leave him some money for laundry powder and stuff too, since I never know when we're about to need it, courtesy of empty boxes being left behind to confuse me. Oh, as I had promised, any alcohol that I have left when I leave, he gets to keep. There'll probably be almost $100 worth. I've bought handy dandy bits and pieces which he can keep too. Knife sharpeners that work, for example, a cake tin without dents, a splatter-guard…
I have 2.5 weeks before I'll be in Gladstone, and I have to say that I doubt we'll keep in touch after that. This was a business arrangement. Some friendships survive them, others do not. Apparently, this is one of the latter.