In Portland, Oregon — which Portlandia has convinced us may be entirely a work of parody — a real-life married couple has made their marital bargaining very literal. Daniel Reeves and Bethany Soule, couple of math-tech-"quantified-self" types, pay each other to do chores, thereby turning the drudgery of cohabitation into a simple economic exchange. It runs a bit like Task Rabbit does. They bid on each chore, and the person willing to fork over the most money gets to skip it. NBC News reports they have paid each other: $4 to get tacos (outside in the rain), $40 to do dishes, and $400 to plan a vacation.
Perhaps there's a whiff of immaturity about this arrangement (must you receive a cash prize to care for your domestic well-being?). But it's also an inventive solution to the recent public debates regarding what to do about housework in a modern relationship. Like a 10-year-old's allowance, it transforms the attitude around doing chores. Rather than resentment sweeping into every broom-stroke, your work earns a tangible benefit — and, perhaps more important, it's acknowledged.
Besides, it clarifies a system of credits and debits that most couples already use — I did the floors, so you hang the picture. And there's something great about being able to quantify how much you don't want to do a certain task. For example, I would give away blank checks for items like: checking if that's a mouse, setting up blinds, and trash-can cleaning (grime-on-grime, no thanks).
Most Viewed Stories
The Big Secret of Every Dating App: Tech Doesn’t Matter
How to Get Out of Any Party Conversation
‘Weed Dick’ Is the New Way for Men to Sexually Disappoint You
Cindy Crawford on Bagels, Instagirls, and Bringing the Supermodel Era to TV
American Apparel Files for Bankruptcy
Astrology GIFs for the Week of October 5, 2015
It’s Harder to Be Thin Than It Was in the ’80s
All the Ceilings Women Keep Hitting Their Heads On
‘Truly Ugly Guy With Glasses’ Is Europe’s Most Virile Man
From Our Partners
Clever nightstand alternatives (for small-spaces!)
7 Eyebrow Mistakes You Need to Stop Making Immediately
11 Struggles Every Girl With Glasses Will Understand
The Day I Told The Ugly Truth About My Marriage
powered by PubExchange
The Cut’s Latest Love and War FeaturesAmber Rose, Populist Slut Hero of Our Time
She walked, she twerked — and she was pretty inspiring.This IUD Ad Is Actually About Staten Island
Even your birth control doesn’t want to take the ferry.You Think You’re Too Classy to Drink Champagne From a Bong?
Think again.‘Weed Dick’ Is the New Way for Men to Sexually Disappoint You
It's like whiskey dick, but with weed.How to Get Out of Any Party Conversation
A helpful guide.Would You Date a Guy on a Hoverboard? A Survey
An important poll for our time.Americans Just Want to Eat in Peace — So They Hide It
We're a nation who hides our snacks.All the Ceilings Women Keep Hitting Their Heads On
There's a Rob-shaped hole on the new Cosmo cover.Queen Ronda Rousey Is the First Woman to Cover Aussie Men’s Fitness
She's flexin' down under.
This week's horoscopes.The Big Secret of Every Dating App: Tech Doesn’t Matter
Just like at bars, it's the crowd that counts.
He didn’t want to chat.8 Actually Good Things That Happened This Week
Baby sea turtles wearing bathing suits and a necklace for your pizza.Selfie Sorority Uses Media Frenzy for Good Cause
Take that, sportscasters.A Comprehensive Taxonomy of Men With Long Hair
And why we like them anyway.Teens Are Dying From Train-Track Photo Shoots
The popular photo destination is actually super-dangerous.‘Truly Ugly Guy With Glasses’ Is Europe’s Most Virile Man
Ed Houben has fathered 106 children — that he knows of.The Internet of Parents Is Miserable and I Love It
Why it's so hard to look away.Did the ‘Maxipad Bandit’ Really Think He’d Escape?
Not so fast, mister.