A couple weekends ago, I came back to my apartment with some female friends to watch a movie. I went into the kitchen, and one friend said, “Uh…is that a big bug on your ceiling?”
I looked up at the ceiling and didn’t see anything. Then I looked where she actually meant, and there, sitting on the vent, was a cockroach that was maybe 2 1/2 inches long. My friends immediately wanted to find a guy in the building to kill it. I suggested a neighbor who I was pretty sure was male (judging by the chubby guys I had seen entering with bottled beer on another occasion), so my friends ran over to recruit his services. Alas, he was not home.
My friends continued to freak out, and I realized that if I wanted this roach out of my apartment, I was going to have to remove it myself. Not having any roach spray, I decided to see if ant spray would be effective.
It wasn’t, really, but it did get the roach to fall to the floor, whereupon I smashed it with the can, and roach bits went flying.
My friends congratulated me on killing the roach and marveled that I was able to do it. In my head I was going, “What else could I have done? I couldn’t leave it there, and I couldn’t have you guys standing around freaking out about it for another half an hour.”
Secretly, though, I was sort of glad that I killed the roach myself. I have a hard time asking favors of people in general, and sometimes I get the impression that men feel awkward being asked to help, or they feel put out/annoyed that someone is interrupting their plans. Men seem to be happy to grab things that are out of reach, or occasionally to lift something heavy, but beyond that, things get questionable if you don’t know what a man’s specific abilities are. He might be good at doing something…or he might not.
Maybe some of this just boils down to how patient a woman is. Not too long ago, Suzanne Gosselin of Boundless wrote about how she never once changed a tire while she was single because she always had
beta orbiters helpful male friends who would do it. She saw this as a good thing. My reaction was more of, “Why didn’t she just change it herself? It’s not that hard.”