Monday, May 11, 2009

A Brief History of Homemaking

Elisheva doing her part to increase disorder, one pretzel at a time

I finished reading A Brief History of Time by Stephen Hawking today. Despite my college education and despite it being a layman's book, I often found myself having to re-read a sentence or paragraph more than once. Sometimes I even was reduced to reading it aloud, word by word, trying to understand what Hawking meant by some principle or another. Avram had to dumb it down for me a few places, until Hawking went even beyond him. I did grasp one principle exceedingly well, while finishing up the last couple chapters while eating lunch.

For every part of the universe that becomes more ordered, a greater part becomes disordered. So for everything that adds order to the universe, such as you reading this post right now adding new information to your brain, an equal (actually greater in the specifics) amount of disorder is released, usually in the form of heat given off by your body. This has a lot of consequences, but there is a simple correlating aspect that I am sure Hawking has never contemplated on, but as a homemaker I recognized immediately.

Suddenly I understand why since this morning I have been working away without ever a break (until now), cleaning and doing laundry and helping children and making lunch, etc. & etc., and yet the house only seems to get dirtier, the dishes pile up faster than I do them, and more dirty laundry is found in various piles hidden around the house than I can do it in. As I increase the order in Lydia and Elisheva's minds - as they grow and learn every day, increasing disorder must be maintained by the very physical laws of the Universe. Thus my house must increase in disorder to offset my children's growth.

Let me repeat that. As my daughters grow in mind and spirit, my house will descend further and further into chaos. It's a proven theory. Even the simple daily act of cooking and eating three meals a day, to simply maintain your life, at the same time sends your life further into chaos. As Hawking pointed out in his book, you should just stop reading his book, or in my case blog post, right now.

For every word you keep reading, your life will disintegrate around you. Your children will become crazier, their clothing will enter further stages of dishabille, and you will probably have to start sweating, thus leading to ever more laundry, to maintain the balance of the universe.

The fact I read this book (another line to highlight in my BYU list of books!) only means that as my mind is now more ordered, I shall have to personally pay for it through blood, sweat, and children's tears. Truly ignorance is bliss (and less laundry).


  1. agreed! I think that means that we all should stop wearing clothes, and eating. it would really solve a few problems for me! :) kidding. but sometimes I really wish for it.

  2. So, my current dishabille is fore-ordained? I can't tell you how relieved that makes me feel!

  3. That Explains EVERYTHING! I am cleaning more than I have ever in my life (including when I was in the Army!) And my House still looks like a Mess!!

  4. Thank you for enlightening us all. This explains why I can work in the yard all day (or as much of the day as is possible with a three-year-old) and only get further and further behind. However, in the case of my yard, history has proven, courtesy of the previous owners, that just leaving it to the wild doesn't really have the desired effect either. So hmm. Danged if you do, danged if you don't I guess.

  5. Entropy is a fascinating subject that suprisingly pokes its head into the most unsuspecting of subjects, like language. All the time.

  6. Mathematics is amazing stuff. I never thought of this aspect of entropy, though. So, what do you make of Cantor's Theory of Trans-finite Cardinal Numbers? I recently heard a BYU lecture on it's application to the Atonement of Jesus Christ ("How could Christ atone for an infinite number of sins in only three hours?")

  7. I'm continually astonished by the ratio of time it takes my kids to make a mess (sometimes 5 seconds is enough) vs. the time it takes for me to clean it up (sometimes hours or days.) I guess I should stop being astonished.