Reversal of Roles

September 11, 2011
A few people are born stupid. But I was born intelligent. It is the circumstances that I have had to face as an adult that, I guess, made me stupid.
It was one of those busy days in the office and then I was back home to have some rest. Nagging wife of mine would not allow me to watch the news peacefully even for half an hour, asking who will become the chief minister of our State or after Munni and Sheela will it be Jaya or Mamata who will become hit item numbers!
I had enough. And decided in that mad and stupid movement to teach my wife a lesson.
Me: Listen, I had enough of this lousy life. From tomorrow morning we are switching roles. It is high time you need to know the problems that we men face. From tomorrow and until further notice I am taking care of your role and you are taking my role. Is it clearly understood?

She: OK Darling.
You should have seen the swiftness with which she replied, surely a Gold Medalist in Olympics, if such an event were to be there.
And it was the next day.
At 5 in the morning the alarm rang. I was changing sides on my bed. My normal time to wake up is 7 am. Or is it?
She: Darling wake up. It's your turn today as you said. You need to wake up Jack, you know his school bus comes by 6.30 and then get Eva ready. You have to drop her to baby sitter by half past seven you see….

Me: OK no need to shout first thing in the morning. I know what to do!
I invited this trouble. Did I not? Off I went to the kids' room - Jack who is nine was snoring just like his papa. For a moment I felt jealous at his peaceful sleep. It was a matter of another 15 minutes before he actually got up from bed. What has happened to the present generation, I said. Then it was my turn to rush to the kitchen to prepare his breakfast and coffee.
Jack: Daddy don't you know I do not drink coffee in the morning?
Me: Since when is that?
Jack: Since I remember...I only drink tea!
OH God, I did not even know the habits of my son. Then it was time for me to pack his school lunch.
Jack: What is that you have packed dad?
Me: There is some bread with cheese and juice.
Jack: Wack……..
Me: Wack what?
Jack: Who eats bread and cheese in school? I want bread and hamburger.
Me: That you will get tomorrow.
Jack: OK dad, then I will eat my snacks in school tomorrow!
I tell you these kids have got the courage of Saddam and the honesty of Mother Teresa.
Me: Where is your bag?
Jack: Over there dad.
Me: And books?
Jack: That you need to... pack.
Me: Enough. I will do it
It was just one hour since the day started and I was getting red hot.
Jack: You have to come and drop me to the bus. I am getting late.
Me: Why can't you go alone?
Jack: No dad. Mum drops me always.
So that job too is done and I am back home. I could not believe that my wife was snoring.
Me: Could you not get up and get Eva ready for me to drop her to the baby sitter?
She: (after a while - remember she is sleeping or pretending to sleep) No darling, it is your job!
Eva is my darling three-year-old daughter, angel of mine, but at that moment I thought I was dealing with a devil. Has she gone after her mother? First she refused to get out of the bed. The moment she did, heaven and hell joined together with her cry. Then to clean her up was another milestone in my life. Three years of age and her mother had not taught her the virtues of cleanliness.

And then a question and answer session. She asking questions and me answering. Unaware of the agreement between papa and mamma, her questions were like – why is that mamma is sleeping today, I think it is good you get up everyday.  I think you make better coffee than mamma! OH did I hear her right? Listening to her brother I prepared tea for her and this young lady wants coffee. It was almost 7.30 by the time I dropped her to the baby sitter next building. OH NO... I am already late to my office which starts in just half an hour.
Then, I find the washroom door closed. Wife is getting ready to go to office. It is her normal time. It's just that this morning, I missed my usual time. Finally, I am off to my office thirty minutes late. Only then I realize that I have not even had a sip of coffee, no breakfast and no medicines. What has happened to my life in two - three hours! It is like I have become a zombie.
I managed office quite well, I must say. But then I realized I had not brought my lunch - which normally is packed and kept neat and ready by my wife. I had forgotten to bring home cooked food. And for the second time in the day I had to depend on hotel food.
The day indeed was busy and then I was back home. OH, I forgot it was my job to bring my daughter from the baby sitter and that too was accomplished.
House was in a mess. Jack who had come early that day had not put any effort to clean the house and my wife who would have arrived half an hour early is enjoying a movie titled "Husbands In Sorrow".
She: What’s for dinner darling?
Me: What?
She: I am asking, what are you cooking for dinner and for our lunch tomorrow?
Me: OH! Let me check what is in.
She: Do not forget - Jack needs to eat by 8 pm and Eva the same time. You know she takes two hours to finish her food.
Me: Yes I know.
This was not what I was expecting. We have a messy house, even messier kitchen and a tiring day starting from five in the morning, and now I need to cook. Today it is going to be just Maggi soup and bread. And with that our dinner was ready by 8 pm but there were no takers and even I found it difficult to have it, what with two hotel meals in the day.
That is when I realize that I made a big mistake and that I was stupid like most men. I may be stupid but then geniusness in the form of smartness emanates from me on occasions such as these. I decided to make amends. It was past 11 pm by the time I was done with washing in the kitchen. The very thought of getting up at five in the morning was dreadful. My wife was already in bed.
Me: Darling, I think I made a mistake
She: You making mistakes? Impossible...
Me: I think it was a mistake suggesting that we need to switch roles.
She: Really?
Me: We should not go against biological facts. Hence, we will lead our life the way our creator wants us to lead
She: It is alright darling. After all it is your idea. But I wish you could continue this role reversal for one more day. (I could read that devilish mischief in her smile).
Me`(innocently): Why one more day ?
She: It is like this dear. If we had one occasion to unite, possibly you could be carrying our third baby, you see. We could have created history! You would be the first male in the world to have the joy of having our child! But that also means, you then need to continue in the new role for at least nine months!
Me: What?!
And many still believe ladies, and especially wives, are Dumb?


Vivian Castelino - Archives:

By Vivian Castelino, Abu Dhabi
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Comment on this article

  • Leidy, eHlwgwYBHggwOfO

    Sun, Oct 23 2011

    Unparalleled accuracy, unequicvoal clarity, and undeniable importance!

  • Alzira, Mangalore/Melbourne

    Wed, Sep 14 2011

    An engaging, thought provoking article Vivian.
    If the reversal of roles becomes a reality, it would a chaotic world ! That is why God created woman.

  • A. S. Mathew, U.S.A.

    Sun, Sep 11 2011

    It is an interesting article...the real story being repeated around the world. Both and the husband and wife will have to mutually appreciate
    various responsible roles they play
    in the family life. It is very sad to say that many husbands can't
    understand the extra roles their wives have to play along with their their outside job. If the husbands will nail their egos and try to help their partners, that is real love in action. When the children grow up, train them also to do whatever service they can do at home to make the life at home
    more pleasant. So, when they get into married life, they can be far well-trained to lead a good married life.

  • Jane DSouza, Bangalore

    Sun, Sep 11 2011

    The grass is greener on the other side indeed! The multitasking capacity of women cannot be underestimated. Good article.

  • Maureen, M'lore, Sydney

    Sun, Sep 11 2011

    The moral of this story is "Do not under estimate women". Appreciate the hard work they do.

  • A.B.Rao, Mangalore

    Sun, Sep 11 2011

    Well written. But a bit too far from reality. Loving husbands do understand and cooperate. This is not to underestimate the sacrifices of a working wife.

  • Davina Castelino, Mangalore/Dubai

    Sun, Sep 11 2011

    Ive been wondering what incident lead to this article now??..
    You are definitely getting better at it!.. Good going!

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