I always assumed that housewives reputedly had flings with handymen because the housewives were lonely, tired and bored, and the handymen were convenient. And being men, were slu– I mean, somewhat opportunistic.
That is, I assumed so until today.
Now, granted, I have had very little experience with either housewifery or handymen. The only times I’ve had handymen in my home (and yes, they have all been men) were when I was renting and I had to. After a while, I stopped alerting landlords to problems and just fixed them myself, rather than waiting around for a couple of weeks for the privilege of something getting fixed by some random, often sub-competent, and sometimes smelly, stranger.
I also don’t remember the last time I had fewer than three jobs. Maybe 14 years ago, during the first several days after I had moved to Denver, but hadn’t found a job yet. Although a lot of my work these days is online and from home, I am still more of a homewrecker than a homemaker.
Now, you already know that I live at an altitude where my sea-level-dwelling friends and family would werfel if they came here directly from the airport without overnighting somewhere in between. It snows a lot here, which is not that big a deal in theory, but the snow management and removal around here leaves something to be desired compared to other places I’ve lived with comparable amounts of snowfall. Indeed, this desire is the fertile fodder for many a wintertime rant, which Seth humors. He is from Arizona, and I think, just takes whatever snow removal he can get. Perhaps he has monsoon rants I have yet to hear.
We have a snow blower for the driveway, but early in the season, it required a replacement part, which we had to order, and Jeebus only knows if it ever came in. In the meantime, snow has been piling up here for months. Piling, drifting, melting, piling… The driveway has been impassible to vehicles, and not much more passable to pedestrians, except for Seth, who is part goat (don’t ask). Going between house and vehicle has been quite the ordeal. If only it were feasible to have a small team of sled dogs just for that 50 feet or so, or even a friendly walrus with a saddle. A walrus ride would have to leave one less disheveled than attempts to traverse on foot what I can only assume is a nascent glacier.
Anyway, we finally got a guy with some heavy equipment to come move some of that snow, ostensibly making the driveway a Way where one can Drive once again, rather than an expanse of snowy tundra that might inspire Jack London to write stories of desperate desolation and barest survival upon returning home from evening commutes. As I saw the guy begin to dig into the several-feet-deep impacted ice and snow mixture, I just felt this overwhelming sense of gratitude. It was a little bit like being rescued. In my case, it was sort of like being rescued at the end of a really uneventful version of The Shining, where Jack takes his medication and is just out of sorts and sleeps a lot, but rescued nonetheless.
Now, as someone who knows how to run heavy equipment but doesn’t happen to have any, I think the appropriate way to express that gratitude is to write the nice man a check, say thank you, and maybe offer him a hot beverage of some kind to go. But the power of rescuing is not to be underestimated. It’s a powerful aphrodisiac. Indeed, it’s what makes the most noble princesses put out to whomsoever shows up.
I could absolutely see how the combination of that being-rescued feeling and the equipment being mysterious, plus possibly a bit of lonely boredom, or craving for some strange, or whatever, could make the Guy Who Comes to Fix Stuff just irresistible. I’d say the snow removal guy was at least 15% more attractive because of the rescuing thing alone. And hey, if you didn’t know that replacing a garbage disposal was something an orangutan could do in about 20 minutes, that percentage could multiply quickly.
Me, I thanked the guy for coming and wrote him a check (and no, my phone number wasn’t on it). On the “FOR” line, though, I wrote “Epic snow removal.” Thanks for the rescue, mac.