In a Biblical parable it is described that if you give a man a fish, he’ll eat for a day. However if you teach a man to fish he will eat for a life time. This metaphor is used and abused all over the place to suit ones purposes. Today however I’m going to mix my metaphors and try to recount the conversation my wife and I had regarding the brown bag lunch. I’ve been an adherent to the brown bag lunch starting at age 12 when I had to stand in long lines to get my school lunch in Junior High. It took so long to get through the line, I had no time to eat before I had to go back to class. So I begged my mother to start buying lunch items and I would make the lunch. And that’s what I did for the next 25 years or so until I moved in with my fiancee. She insisted that she make my lunch. In fact on a few occasions she actually would make a Japanese style lunch with a typical Japanese style lunch box. I even bought one for myself the first time I visited Japan. Most recently, we talked about her making the lunch and I said, “If you want to stop making the lunch, that’s fine with me, I don’t mind making the lunch.”
Then it occured to me that she had smothered me with kindness in those early days. Women or at least my fiancee are really good about actions. They are big into following through on plans. She had every intention of making me happy and she did all kinds of unexpected nice things. I tried to reciprocate as I went along. I would vacuum the house. Maybe clean the kitchen, dust the floors. It wasn’t a big pain to do these things. So today she finally decided to take me up on my offer of making the lunch. And I jumped right into it. I haven’t made my lunch regularly since 2004 I think. But, I don’t mind it. I’ve tried to maintain some level of self-sufficiency after marriage just to take the burden off of her so she could enjoy the same free time I enjoy on a daily basis. We are not overwhelmed with housework or chores. We keep up with that pretty well I think. But getting back to our discussion about my offer to start making lunch, She laughed and hugged me and said, “Well now that I’ve caught the fish,..” and I said in return, “…, The fish has to fish for himeslf”. So no matter what happens it’s always best to take up the things you have always done rather than be lazy and let your spouse do all the work in a certain area. I’m amazed to find out that a lot of men won’t vacuum. I don’t know why, but it is often the case. When it comes to laundry, I generally wash my own clothes every time. Occasionally I have to help my wife fold her clothes, but she manages to wash her own clothes and other things too. She does bedsheets, towels, etc. So whatever your spouse does, you have to equal that doing, that is the law of attraction.