Black Cat watching Dexter

Learning About The World From Dexter

I’ve been catching up on Dexter, and I’ve learned a few things over the seasons:

  1. Don’t move to Miami.
  2. Try to not kill people.
  3. If you must kill people, you have to be meticulous except all the times you don’t.
  4. If you decide on a life of killing, become a “lab geek” because almost no one suspects the lab geek.
  5. Surround yourself with good-looking people so if someone does suspect the lab geek, they can stop following up when they fall in love with one of your fine-looking friends or family members.
  6. Everyone you fall in love with will kill or be killed.
  7. Even the non-killers are crazy.
  8. The police are awesome and stupid and trustworthy and dirty and curse a lot.
  9. Cell phones are only traceable in other television shows.
  10. And finally, car crashes will get you out of any jam.
Black Cat watching Dexter
My cat watching Dexter with me.

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HIs and her sinks

Family Myth Busters

All families carry myths with them. Most are harmless and make for great stories: “You were so beautiful as a child that I had to fend off modeling offers.” “You were so shy I wore you as a third leg until you were eight and now look at you up on stage playing for thousands.” They can be a lifeboat as we make our way through the murkiness of growing up and bring laughter and love to who we were and who are today.

But sometimes they hurt. Kids can’t get past the vision of themselves by other family members. They don’t reach their own potential because they aren’t “the smart one” or “the athletic one.” They stop trying in school and focus on the field or vise versa, and they are stripped of the opportunity to fall in love with an unexpected subject in or out of school.  The family myth of one sibling can also steal the joy of learning about one’s self: “Why bother? I can be popular or funny or something, somewhere else, to show that I, too, deserve a myth around me. A story of my own beyond not-my-sibling.”

Family myths often carry into adulthood. They shape how we view ourselves — our expectations of what we can and can’t do, of what clubs to try and friends to make. They can also be remade in our new families when we are married and/or have children.

“Stop being crazy.”

“You’re always unreliable.”

“She’s so much like you. Poor thing.”

Never. Always. Every interaction colored by a two-dimensional view of our partner and, eventually, our children.

I have myths surrounding me. Some I love and some I hate, but this is the tale of one myth. The myth of messy.

Yes, by the time I was in high school, my mom gave up on my disaster of a room and just asked me to keep the door closed so our beautiful home didn’t have to fight my hatred of cleaning. My motto was an exasperated: “It just gets messy again!” In college, I once found a rice cooker underneath three-weeks worth of laundry, and I didn’t even own a rice cooker. By my 20s, I began to see the importance and joy of cleaner living, but the myth of messy persisted into my marriage no matter how many countertops I wiped down or floors I vacuumed. The manufacturing of mess was mine and the desire to clean was Scott’s.


Scott always wanted his and her sinks, and I fought against it for years because it seemed decadent. Had I known his wish would also be my myth’s downfall I would’ve ordered them for our two-foot bathroom in Carytown and lived without a tub.

HIs and her sinks
Sinks don’t lie, and without either of us trying to be anything we’re not, these are our his and her sinks.
his sink
Scott’s sink. And I could’ve taken a two-week series and all that would’ve moved was the vacuum — probably by me.
her sink
My sink. And the black thing next to the trash can? Scott’s mess encroaching on my side.

Wait, does this mean I have to do all the cleaning now?

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