My mother's Portuguese. Like, real Portuguese. Not Acorean, not from the Algarve, straight up from the mountains in the north, grew up on a farm, it was freezing in the winter and hot in the summer, wore stuff like this on festival days, church all the time, ate bread and olive oil as meals most days (followed by a shot of bagaco) until she was 15 and went to the convent Portuguese.
Total BAMF. The heart of gold is there, but under layers of angry Portuguese mom.
And she can cook.
And she can clean.
And is really sexist.
So, as a kid, she would force me to clean. The older brother got to do whatever the fuck he wanted, but MariaJinx had to clean (dudes, I'm not even a Maria).
And I sucked at it.
Like, holding a mop became a battle to not drown. Furniture polish would somehow end up in my nose causing fainting spells. Dust bunnies would stay in my hair for days.
And each time I failed, she'd take whatever tool I had in my hand (broom, mop, dust rag) hit me with it and then scream, "MARIAJINX! HOW ARE YOU SUPPOSED TO CLEAN FOR YOUR HUSBAND!? YOU NEED TO LEARN HOW TO MOP!"
And, snottily, I'd inform her that my husband would love me so much he'd be okay with it.
"MARIAJINX, YOUR MOTHER IN LAW WILL DISAPPROVE!"
More snottily, I'd remind her that as I wasn't planning on marrying a Portuguese dude, I doubt my future mother-in-law would care.
"WHAT WILL YOU DO WHEN YOUR HUSBAND BRINGS GUESTS HOME, MARIAJINX!?"
At my snottilyiest, I'd shrug and told her that then he'd clean.
Which made her foam at the mouth, hit me again, and loudly complain to my dad that I was just the worst.
Snottily, he'd remind her that they were the ones raising me, so it was their fault.
Fast forward 20 years, she and I have had our ups and downs, downers, and downests, but are pretty steady now...and I wish I fucking learned how to mop.
Seriously. Had she said, "MariaJinx, one day people from far away will come to visit you. You'll like these people and don't want them to think your life is so fucked up that you can't even mop. What will you do then?" I would have learned to mop.
I would have.
I wouldn't had spent the past hour almost crying in my kitchen because wtf MopnGlow, why aren't you glowing, and why is there so much invisible hair that only turns visible when wet, and why is there mop water everywhere, and how/when does it dry?!?!
So let's all take this lesson. Removing sexism from our daily lives really does pay off in the end...even if I'm lying about the above paragraph and I totally would have just snottily told her that then I'd make my boyfriend do it.
Mopping sucks, ya'll.