just leave it there.

after having a meal at a relative's house, i always tend to wash my own dish and glass. i figure it's the least i could do for a free meal. i noticed, though, that everyone always intervenes whenever i try to accomplish this small task, and i don't understand why. does it really look like i'm struggling with the sponge and warm water? is it too much of a hassle? maybe it's just common courtesy for the host to acknowledge that the freeloading guest shouldn't have to do any kind of chore, no matter how small. perhaps each person is secretly obsessive-compulsive, and needs each dish scrubbed, lathered and rinsed a certain way.

this half-hearted command to "just leave it there" always comes as a surprise. it's as though they think i might have something better to do - catch a television show perhaps, or make a phone call - something more important than running warm water over a plate. the thing of it is, i'm weird. i actually like to do dishes. i like stacking dirty plates and lining up cups and putting used silverware in a small pile. and then i attack them, one by one, until the duty is complete. i don't like to iron, or make my bed, or mow the lawn, or clean the tub, but i don't mind dishes at all. there's something about the visual transformation from filthy to immaculate that inspires me, makes me think i can accomplish something after all.

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