There are tasks we perform daily that never end. The problem and dissatisfaction stem from the fact that the job must get done or the results will be catastrophic.

We can call such repetitive chores grunt work. They are necessary, but not glamorous.

Countless tasks fit the definition of thankless tasks: washing dishes; doing laundry; cleaning house; yard work; and even the responsibility for animals.

If you think using the term catastrophic is over the top, we will take each task listed above and show you the error in your thinking.

The daily drudge of washing dishes never ends. First, you prepare a meal. If you were Hubby or our son, the pots, pans, and utensils would soon fill the sink. If you happen to be a neat freak like this writer, you clean as you go. But not the guys in our family.

Whenever Hubby decided to prepare a stew, he always started with an average size pot. As he added the ingredients, the man of the house realized he needed a larger pot. Most of the time, he would end up using the soup pot, but he had to work up to that size every time.

Following the cooking process, there will be dirty plates, serving dishes and silverware to wash. By the end of the meal, you have a mountain of dirty dishes requiring someone’s attention. Even if you use a dishwasher, you must load the handy gadget. After the dishes are clean, they must be unloaded and put away. But by that point, there are dirty dishes in the sink, again.

What if you forgo doing the dishes? At some point, every plate, cup, glass, and sundry other eating utensils will pile up. College students or bachelors are not the only ones guilty of neglected dishes.

We have all had the misfortune of visiting homes where the people do not clean regularly. Sometimes they even allow their cats to climb on everything. Cat hair and dirty dishes are not aesthetically pleasing.

Did you know people who owned portable dishwashers? Some of our relatives only used them when people were sick, and they tried to minimize the spread of the germs.

If you have enough clothes, dirty laundry will pile up and perfume the air with an unpleasant stench. Our family knew a bachelor college professor who would never do laundry. Dirty clothes ended up in a monstrous pile in his spare room. When he ran out of socks, shirts, and unmentionables, he would buy new ones. The fun came when he fell in love and had to take those mountains of dirty laundry to the cleaners before his bride moved in. The total cleaning bill was several hundred dollars.

Cleaning house is yet another thankless task. By the time, every room is clean, here comes your toddler. He wants a drink of Kool-Aid. To prove what a big boy he is, he pours a quart of the red liquid into a seven-ounce tumbler.

This messy event happened when our son was little. The mess he left behind was almost worth the surprised expression on his face when the tumbler did not hold the contents of the pitcher.

If you decide to stop cleaning, the dust bunnies under your furniture will multiply. Or, you could adopt the lifestyle of a hoarder and ignore the mess. If that is your chosen path, be sure your tetanus shots are up to date.

Yard work follows the same pattern. You finish mowing. It rains. The grass grows, and you have to mow again. If you lower the mower level, you may be able to skip a week or two. However, your yard will have that no grass just scalped look.

When you think about it, civilization is the problem. If we did not live in large homes that require upkeep, we would not become slaves to our possessions.

Have you considered going back to your roots and living in a cave?



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