The advantages of being included in a family are becoming more and more fantastic in my mind ever since our move to Grinnell. While the vagabond life of newlywed students has its perks (staying up way past midnight; happily eating for under $30 a week; people considering you worthy of charity), I’m beginning to think that God might have been on to something when He planted every person, rather concretely, in a family. Allow me to share my observations concerning this matter:
The first fringe benefit that comes to mind is the use of slave labor. For example, my sister usually has several loads of laundry to be done at least once a week. Rather than doing what most lonely housewives must do (fold the laundry herself while watching Gilmore Girls), she is afforded a hard working girl to come fold all her laundry. Not only does my sister receive these services for free, but said girl also supplies entertaining conversation. Does not receive a penny. Just folds and talks for hours. My sister receives all these services solely because of her involvement in a family.
Not another penny will we spend on mechanical work for our car. Several days ago Logan arrived at work to discover a flat tire on our beloved Cavalier. Whispering sweet nothings to the Cav under his breath, he called me up on my cell phone to tell me the news and let me know he’d be a little late coming home from work that night because he’d have to change the tire. Lo and behold, when he emerged from work eight hours later, there was the Cav, tire completely patched and restored. He had to do some undercover work just to find out which uncle had done the kind deed.
Another bonus is free storage. Because we are cheap, Logan and I live in a small apartment. Too small, in fact, to store all of our possessions. No worries. The family farm has old offices and warehouses just perfect for storing our extra belongings. (It is a wonder of the American culture that we even have ‘extra belongings’.) Not only are we provided with free storage, but also free moving vehicles and personnel. All we have to do is say, “See here, man, this furniture needs stored,” and we never worry another minute about it. The furniture is whisked away never to be seen until we next need it. We had been having particular trouble with finding kind enough souls to house our very cumbersome sound system. (Our apartment currently does not have the architectural structure to withstand the sound waves the system can produce.) While this had caused us worries as isolated newlywed-students, we needn’t have been anxious while apart of a family. Our kind sister and brother-in-law now have a whopping 6.1 ONKYO system suspended on their living room walls. They even acted like they wanted it. Incredible!
Long live the family!