Thursday, January 3, 2013

Five Bits of Motherly Wisdom

Living with four guys definitely has its challenges, the largest of which is this—guys, at least those I live with, don’t always appreciate the wisdom of little old me, because I’m stupid and just want to control everyone. All the time. And for no good reason. (That’s what they tell me anyway—well, no one actually calls me “stupid,” but it’s definitely implied.)

HOWEVER, today I come prepared with verifiable, scientific, and third-party proof that everything I’ve been saying all these years is true, and I can only hope that now I’ll get the respect I’m due and be obeyed as the paragon of good sense that I am.    

Yeah right.

Here goes anyway—

I tell my boys, “Don’t drink milk straight from the carton, it’s icky,” and guess what? It really is. This month’s issue of Real Simple magazine quotes Keri Denay, MD, a family doctor and clinical lecturer at the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor as saying “There are billions of microorganisms in our mouths at any given time, including hundreds of different kinds of bacteria. If you drink straight from the bottle or carton, some of those germs will end up in the milk.” The next person could then ingest those germs. Gross.

I tell everyone, “Don’t wear shoes in the house. You’re tracking in germs and ruining the rugs.” When Good Morning America tested the bottoms of eight different people’s shoes, they found more bacteria present than on your typical toilet seat. These germs transfer to floor tile and carpet. Yuck. If you’re my guest, I won’t insist you walk around barefoot, but all residents should be willing to ditch the shoes at the threshold.

I tell my husband, “Throw that hanky in the trash! Blow your nose with a tissue and then toss it—that’s much healthier.” ABC News reported that if you have a cold and blow your nose, the stuff causing your cold is now on the hanky and can survive a good period after leaving your body. So a tissue, provided you throw it away and wash your hands, is a much better bet than a nasty hanky.

I tell my sons, “There is no way that you are paying full attention to your homework if you’re watching tv/listening to music at the same time. Multi-tasking has its limits.” In Technology: Myth of Multitasking, Jim Taylor, PhD writes that multi-tasking  is only possible if one task is “so well learned as to be automatic” like walking or talking, and if the tasks involve different processing parts of the brain. So you can chew gun and walk at the same time, but you can’t do homework and listen to music with lyrics “because both tasks activate the language center of the brain.” Yeah, what Mom said. I guess you need a freakin’ PhD before anyone will listen to you around here.

I tell everyone (except Thomas—he’s only eight after all), “Women like well-dressed men,” and in a Men’s Warehouse survey, eighty-five percent of women said that a well-dressed man is sexier than one with lots of money. Okay, that’s bull, but I’m still right!

What about you? Any “motherly” wisdom you care to share? Even if you tend to ignore it?

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