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08:51:44 - 2000-10-17

THE EIGHTH MONTH OF PREGNANCY IS THE CLEANEST

(In case it isn't too obvious...this is the rough draft for my newspaper column this week. I say "too obvious" because there are no curse words in today's entry. Remember...this is A ROUGH DRAFT ...the finished product will be MUCH funnier. Or ... at least that's what I keep telling myself.)

My wife has now gotten to the point in the pregnancy they call "nesting".

Nesting is where she's built a giant nest out of pine needles and grass in the middle of the living room where she sits on dozens of eggs and flaps her arms.

BWAHAHAHAHAHAHAAA!!!

No...not really...but gee whiz...wouldn't that be funny?

Actually "nesting" is where the pregnant woman begins to freak out and clean EVERYTHING. Maternal instincts kick into overdrive as they scrub toilets and mop driveways.

I read all about nesting in the 17,000 books we now own about pregnancy. At the time that I read about this bizarre phenomenon I thought "Now THIS is going to be cool."

A week into her nesting, I'm beginning to think that I just want my old wife back. The one who didn't mind if there was a dirty plate in the sink or a hair on the bathroom floor.

Folks ... I'm here to tell you that this nesting stuff is about as fun as physical therapy.

The first instance of her nesting took place about ten days ago. She took it upon herself to rearrange the clothes in my dresser. Now, I've left my dresser in the exact same fashion for the last 15 years. All the clothes that I never wear because I never remember to open their drawers are in the bottom three drawers. The top three drawers are underwear, socks and t-shirts. These are the three drawers that I use often.

I had no idea she had started with my dresser to perfect her nesting techniques. I was too busy watching the Crimson Tide stumble around a football field like Mr. Magoo at the time.

"Honey," she announced as she stood in front of the television proudly. "Come see what I've done."

"Can it wait," I asked. "I'm watching Alabama sink to new depths right now."

Her face turned red and her eyes bulged. Her voice took on a possessed tone.

"NO," she growled. "GET IN HERE."

I put the remote down, rocked myself out of the recliner and we both waddled back to the bedroom.

I noticed immediately what she had done. Mainly because I was used to seeing my dresser serve as something resembling a clothes hamper rather than an actual dresser.

"What in God's name have you been doing in here," I asked slowly.

She beamed.

Beamed.

She was actually proud of the fact that she had just turned my fashion world upside down.

"I rearranged your dresser," she said, doing a little dance that only very pregnant women are capable of doing which looks more like a four-year-old trying desperately to control his bladder rather than an actual dance.

"I see that," I said warily as I noticed that she had somehow managed to get all the drawers closed on the dresser, a feat I hadn't managed to do since 1991.

She then took me on a tour of my new and improved dresser. Everything white was in one drawer. All light colors in another drawer. All dark in another. And on. And on.

I didn't like it. I had socks sharing drawers with t-shirts. Shorts with handkerchiefs. Dogs laying down with cats. If there was ever a case of dresser pandemonium...this was it.

I wanted to say "Put it all back the way it was."

But...I've also learned ... you do NOT correct a pregnant woman no matter how badly she needs corrected. This could escalate to such unwanted behavior as crying jags and flying kitchen appliances.

"That looks great, dear," I said as I gave her a soft hug and a kiss on the forehead.

She was positively glowing. As far as she was concerned, that kiss on the forehead was basically giving her the green light to rearrange the entire house.

Ten days later, I STILL can't find any toilet paper in this house.

But...the nursery is finished. The second bedroom is cleaner than it's ever been. Every cobweb, every speck of mildew in the shower...gone. Spices lined up in alphabetical order. The fireplace is swept out and the chimney cleaned as well as a pregnant woman can clean it.

Meanwhile, I sit in my recliner, watching and wishing my wife could always stay eight months pregnant.

This is better than marrying a Stepford Wife.

***************************************

QUESTION OF THE DAY

Are you a neat freak or a slob and give an example of how bad of a neat freak or slob you are.

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