Cast of Characters
Jane (aka Mom, Taskmaster, Evil Queen of the Jane Household)
#1son (helpful 9 year old, loves baseball, the Military Channel and picking on his younger brother)
#2son (cheerful, goofy youngest of the family who will do anything to get out of chores. Anything.)
Act 1, Scene 1
(A messy home. A very, very messy home.)
First, we need to pick up the clutter. Then, you can choose something from the Job Jar and get paid OR you can do what I tell you to do and not get paid. It’s your choice.
(#1son happily trots off to clean playroom, bedroom, family room, garage – wherever cleaning needs to be done, he cheerfully goes. God, I love this kid! #2son continues playing with Legos.)
#2son, you need to pick up your toys now.
(#2son ignores Jane)
I mean it. You need to clean up. And you can pick a chore or I can pick a chore. But if I pick it, you’re not getting paid.
(Ad lib arguing, pleading, bargaining, hiding, going to the bathroom, needing to put on a band-aid, looking for a lost Lego, hiding again, etc.)
I mean it, #2son. I’m not fooling around. You need to help. NOW!
But I don’t want to! I want to play with my LEGOOOOOOOOOS!
Well, you have to. Are you a member of this family? Yes. Then you have to do your part.
Well, I don’t want to be a member of this family. I’m going to run away!
That’s fine. But before you go you’re going to have to do some chores. You owe us for dinner last night, that comfy bed you slept in and breakfast this morning. Oh, and you still haven’t worked off what you owe for your swim team fees.
(#2son’s chin starts to quiver. Eyes begin welling up.)
Oh no, mister. That’s not going to work with me.
(Tears start flowing now and he falls to a heap on the floor, face down.)
Crying? Seriously? You’re crying over a little housework? I can’t believe this! All I need for you to do is pick up your toys and pick a couple chores from the job jar. It’ll take you 15 minutes. Tops. And you’re crying about it! I do this every day. Pick up after you all. Clean toilets. Scrub floors. Vacuum. Dust. Laundry. Do you see me crying about it?
THERE’S NO CRYING IN HOUSEWORK!
(And then, realizing what she said, Jane starts laughing hysterically.)
Nope. Not one of my better moments. But I still crack myself up.
12 responses to “There’s No Crying In Housework”
You crack me up, too.
During the school year, I would rather do housework then correct the pile of papers I have for the night. I even reward myself with doing dishes if for example, I get the geometry papers done.
During the summer … there are more tears involved when it comes to housework .. I revert back to childhood I suppose.
I don’t know what shocks me more, you making your poor wee son cry in your guise as Evil Mum or you paying your children to do chores in your guise as Super Mum! No one pays me to do the chores!!!! 😉
Do you have a spy cam in my house? Because me and my wife had the same conversation the other day. You’ll never guess which one was me. 🙂
A very funny one act play! I feel bad laughing when #2 was so sad and crying; but, he had to do his chores before he could run away? Hehehe! Funny 🙂 THERE”S NO CRYING IN HOUSEWORK! Hmm…I sometimes cry, too, when I have to do my chores…I’d much rather play. (That’s what I am doing right now.)
Both my kids play baseball and my husband coaches, so he uses the actual quote all the time – but you know what? There’s TONS of crying in baseball. And I’m shocked by the job jar/paying for chores thing too, in the sense of ‘holy crap! How did I NOT THINK OF THAT?”
Oh, Jane. You crack ME up as well! I loved it.
You have a future in playwriting, my dear! Better than Neil Simon!
I’ll tell you what, Jane. Just let him off the hook and tattoo him somewhere only consenting adults will see it: “Attention, future partners: I cry if you want me to clean up after myself.”
At least no other woman (or man) will be subject to his refusals after that.
You make me smile. My parents had a similar system with no pay included, that caused all 4 of us to race each other to the job list every Saturday morning while Mom and Dad slept in. Memories! 🙂
I “pay” my kids in fake money. They don’t really know the difference, but when they’ve accumulated enough, I let them trade it in for real money to buy a new Thomas Train or something. It seems to work…though there is a still an awful lot of crying going!
I don’t know…
I cry at the very thought of housework. (Could I hire your kids for the price of some fabulous baked goods???)
Cue Madonna’s: This used to be my playground…
I will be humming it all day THANKYOUVERYMUCH!
(PS: I LOVE the job jar idea.)