The Plausible Cheering Squad

For various reasons my attention lately has not been directed toward housekeeping, and my house shows it. I’m not a perfectly neat person in normal times, as evidenced by our monthly laundry emergencies and by the three hours I spend every other Tuesday morning frantically picking up the house so that the maids can do their job.

But even by my standards our house this week is particularly grim. It reminds me of my room when I was a twelve-year-old, only worse because every blessed room in the house is that way, and since our house was apparently built before closets were invented, the clean-up procedure is a bit more involved than the one I employed in junior high.

This morning as I made an extra large, extra caffeinated cup of coffee to fuel my upcoming cleaning binge I remarked to my husband that the job may be too large for me this time around.

“Don’t worry,” he said. “You can definitely do some of it.”

His confidence was so infectious and his standards so delightfully low that he soon had me chanting, “Go Shala, go Shala, do something!”* with little more to fuel me than the fumes from my morning mug.

Is my husband an excellent manager or what?

*This cheer brought to you by the Plausible Cheering Squad.

About Shala Howell

I spent two decades helping companies like Bell Labs, Juniper Networks, and a genetic testing company that was later acquired by CVS translate some of the world’s most complicated concepts into actionable, understandable English. Now I'm working on a much harder problem -- fostering children’s curiosity and engagement in the scientific, artistic, and linguistic world that surrounds them. The first book in my Caterpickles Parenting Series, What’s That, Mom?, focuses on how to use public art to nurture children’s curiosity in the world around them. My next book, Did Dinosaurs Have Belly Buttons?, is currently planned for release in 2018. In the meantime, you can find me blogging about life with a very curious Ten-Year-Old at, chatting about books and the writing life at, and tweeting about books, writing, science, & things that make me smile at @shalahowell.
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3 Responses to The Plausible Cheering Squad

  1. Victoria says:

    Reminds me of college. I managed to find a roommate who was comfortable with my level of disarray, so we lived happily in chaos. One of the stories that I’m willing to share in public: some frat guys were going around our dorm collecting for unicef. We open our door, ask him to wait a moment while we poke around for change, he looks in our room then yells to his friend down the hall, “Dude! You gotta come see this! It’s a GIRL’S room!”

    Now we use our office (formerly dining room), which we can close off, as the “closet.”


  2. Pingback: Funny things my husband says, Episode 1273804695 | CATERPICKLES

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