How to Get Really Clean Dishes

washing dishesI was washing dishes this morning when I recalled how we did it when I was a kid.

We didn’t have a dishwasher – they hadn’t been invented yet or were too expensive – and we had a roster system between the three of us to take it in turns washing, drying and putting away.

Washing was the ‘preferred’ job in the house – it was considered easier to do and more ‘adult’ (something we are all struggling to be when we are younger, and running from as we get older). We were only allowed to wash up after we were 12. Being the eldest this task fell to me first, so I was pretty much guaranteed the washing up job for a year and a bit before my younger brother caught up.

This was not, of course, without its complications. Being the sought after job, my brother was constantly at pains to prove that he was old enough and capable enough for the job, and his way of doing that was to scrutinise every plate that I washed, complaining loudly when there was a spot or mark on them, and ‘dobbing’ me in to Mum, who refereed the complaint and made the final decision as to whether the item in question was to be returned to the sink for a second wash.

I think cricket umpires and football referees had an easier job than my mother.

But I can tell you the dishes were clean!

Comment posted by Joanna
at 1/5/2008 5:57:06 AM

Steph: He still does this. But because there is no-one else to “adjudicate” he makes the judgement call himself.

Comment posted by ozlady
at 1/5/2008 11:10:55 PM

My poor sister-in-law… you must be washing a lot of dishes twice if he’s anything like he was before!

You must have wondered where this habit came from!

Comment posted by Joanna
at 1/6/2008 5:31:41 PM

Not really – I’m a big sister too remember? My little sister used to do the same thing. The rule in our house was that if you didn’t wash it properly the first time, you had to dry it when it was finally clean. She HATED drying…….

He doesn’t do it as much as he probably did when you guys were kids. I have a “look” that I give that tends to nip it in the bud pretty quick.

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