Anonymous Mailbag

Rejoice, it’s anonymous mailbag Tuesday.

The anonymous mailbag is brought to you by my guy Ryan Kelley at The Home Loan Expert. It’s a new year and now is the time to get prequalified for a mortgage in just five minutes. Yep, five minutes. That way if a house suddenly goes on the market and you want to be able to bid on it, boom, you’re ready to go. Plus, did I mention it only takes five minutes? How many of you have been holding off on doing this just because you think it’s going to take too long?

Most of you.

Well, guess what, it couldn’t be any easier.

Go get qualified today.

Send your anonymous mailbag questions to claytravis@gmail.com, anonymity guaranteed.

Okay, here we go:

“I’m a 37 year old married dad of two. My wife was recently laid off from a well paying tech job back in December. So far we’ve done fine getting by on my income alone (I own a small business that is currently doing very well, but it fluctuates over the course of a year). While my wife has half-heartedly sent a handful of resumes and applications to find a new job, she seems to be fully embracing the “stay at home mom” lifestyle. If she really put forth some effort, I’m confident she could land a job that pays just as much or more than her previous gig.

 However, I come home every afternoon to a clean house, she has been dropping off and picking up our kids every day, so I don’t have to, and we are having three times more sex than when she was working full time. I assume it’s because I’m the sole breadwinner now and she sees how hard I work to provide for the family, or maybe she’s not as stressed?

My question to you, fellow lover of boobs, is do I turn up the pressure cooker on my wife trying to get another job and live much more comfortably with two incomes, or keep riding this stay-at-home-Mom train (literally)?”

My grandmother, who was a Georgia school teacher while living in Chattanooga, Tennessee back in the days when women didn’t work that much outside the house, used to say my grandfather worked so they could live and she worked so they could make life worth living.

So I think the simple question you have here is this — what provides your family a better lifestyle — your wife being home all day or your wife working so you have dual incomes?

I know it’s trendy to hate everything that people older than you ever did because they’re racist, sexist, homophobic, awful human beings according to today’s social justice warriors, but here’s the simple truth — if you have multiple kids, especially if they are young kids, your quality of life is way better if one parent stays home with them all day.

I suspect just about every married couple reading this right now would agree with this statement. Sometimes the reason something was common in years past wasn’t because it was outdated and unfair, it was common because it worked better for the family unit.

Now the reason most families don’t have one parent at home and one parent at work is financial — it’s hard to provide an upper middle class lifestyle for a family with only one working parent. Hell, it’s often hard to provide an upper middle class lifestyle for a family with two working parents in many major cities.

But if you have the luxury to be able to afford to provide that lifestyle for your family, in my opinion it’s the unquestioned best family unit.

It sounds like you have that luxury right now so I don’t see any reason why it should end.

Having said that, you definitely need to discuss this with your wife at some point. And you also need to be honest with her about your family’s financial status going forward. What would happen if you lost your job or the economy entered a downturn as it inevitably will? Suddenly it might be much more difficult for her to find work and your family would be incredibly stressed. Another reason why many people stick with two working parents is because it provides a cushion in the event one person loses a job.

My advice to everyone out there — have three months of income saved up so you can weather a major disruption in your life. You should start saving the minute you get your first job and continue to put aside some of your money out of every paycheck. I think three months is the minimum, eventually it would be nice to have six months or a year to protect you.

It remains absolutely jarring to me how many people can’t miss one paycheck without their entire life collapsing around them.

Don’t be one of those people.

“Clay, my wife is 20 years younger than me. As with most females these day she only sports a small landing strip on the playground. This is perfectly fine with me. Lately she has been consulting with some service that will completely eliminate any pubic hair by use of laser. I’m not completely against this, but in my life time I’ve seen a lot of trends make 180 degree turns and I’ve discussed this with her. She seems to think the full bush is dead forever. I seem to think the bush will be back stronger than ever in a few years. I also think a laser too close to the turkey gobbler is a little risky. What do you think?”

Just about everything is cyclical.

I used to make fun of my wife’s argument that one day super short basketball shorts would come back in style. And guess what many college kids are starting to rock? The super short John Stockton shorts.

The beard has, unquestionably, come back in a big way, but when I started rocking my beard back in 2003 almost no one had a beard and everyone thought I was a hobo. Nowadays guys from 25 to 40 rock the beard in enormous numbers.

Which makes me thinks my kids will probably love the mustache again and we’ll roll through another Magnum, P.I. sex symbol era.

Having said all of this, I don’t think the big bush will ever come back in style because there’s one big exception to this general rule — women’s clothing isn’t going back to a Victorian era because once women received equal treatment under the law they stopped dressing like burlap sacks.

So women’s fashion, since they gained the right to vote, has become progressively sexier.

This is actually pretty fascinating to think about, as women have gained greater legal rights in America they have embraced overt sexuality even more. Now I know our society in general has also embraced greater sexual freedom, but women have certainly changed their dress more in the past 100 years than men have, right?

And nowhere in western civilization has clothing changed more than when it comes to bikinis.

Can you imagine what the average man from 1919 would think if you suddenly transported him to the average beach in 2019? He’d think he’d died and gone to heaven. The bathing suits women wear today are basically nonexistent.  And unless the Taliban conquer America, I don’t think we’ll ever see an era where big bathing suits on women are back in style.

As a result I think women will need to keep the nether region trimmed very tightly to rock their preferred bathing suits. (And workout clothes too, honestly). That means I don’t see the big bush ever coming back in style.

So I think your wife can get lasered without having to worry too much about the big bush trend coming back and leaving you bereft of the big bush you’ll never be able to part like the Red Sea again.

Finally, is there any man out there really upset that the big bush era is over and begging for it to come back? Unless that’s you, I’d welcome the move.

“My wife and I were blessed with a beautiful girl a little over 2 years ago – she’s amazing and has changed my life – but we recently started trying to expand our family and went through a miscarriage. 
Given that you are a father of 3, I’m curious if you have been through this or if you have any advice? I don’t know how to help my wife get past this and look to the future. And I can’t help but look up shit online and think, “damn, if I hadn’t drank that extra beer after playing golf we wouldn’t have lost the baby.” I know that’s likely not the case, but I can’t help but think about it. 
My wife’s birthday is this weekend and I’m planning a stay-cation in town (we live in Hawaii, so, not too shabby) without our daughter. Do you think this is a good idea? I just don’t know how to handle this.”
You should definitely take your wife away on a staycation.
And while I know a miscarriage can be very difficult — particularly depending on the stage of the pregnancy at which point the miscarriage occurs — they are incredibly common and almost always nature’s way of ensuring that a fetus created with substantial flaws that would make life virtually impossible for the baby isn’t born.
Many women, in fact, have miscarriages without even really knowing they were ever pregnant in the first place.
The decisions you and your wife made are, honestly, not to blame in any way and you have to combat that line of thinking.
In fact, most women aren’t aware they are pregnant when the new fetus is at its most vulnerable state. That is, go look at the prohibitions that mothers will follow once they realize they’re pregnant — they won’t drink or smoke or eat raw foods or even ride roller coasters — yet go think about the behavior of most of these women in the first month of their pregnancy, before they realize they are pregnant. What are they doing? They’re drinking and smoking and eating raw foods and riding roller coasters and most of the time the baby survives all of this while it’s in its most vulnerable state.
That’s because babies have had to survive incredibly dire straits for our species to endure.
You should obviously take precautions and behave in a healthy manner when you’re pregnant, but you can also do so knowing that every culture prohibits different things and a glass of wine or beer isn’t killing your baby. Asian women don’t stop eating sushi and French women don’t stop drinking while they’re pregnant. They just do everything in moderation.
Your wife had a miscarriage, but neither of you did anything wrong.
Plus, you’ve already had one healthy daughter and given that fact the odds are very good that the two of you will have another healthy baby at some point down the road.
Good luck.
“A new buddy of mine recently borrowed some of my nicer tools, an air compressor and nail gun. He didn’t ask me, he showed up at my house when I was at work and asked my wife and she lent them to him. Ok whatever, that’s fine… I guess. Well it’s been like 3 weeks now and I want my tools back. They’re expensive. I’m guessing he may not be taking very good care of them. My wife thinks it’d be a dick move if I told him I want them back. What is the general rule of thumb when borrowing someone’s tools?”
A general rule of thumb is you borrow from the person who owns and uses the product not the person’s wife.
So your buddy already violated basic borrowing code by asking your wife for your tools while you were away at work. I don’t blame your wife for loaning them out — she probably figured this is what you would have done too — but your buddy couldn’t text you or wait for you to bring them over? He didn’t even borrow the tools from you, he borrowed them from your wife.
Secondly, HE’S HAD THEM FOR THREE WEEKS!
That’s not borrowing your tools, that’s taking possession of them.
Your buddy should have brought the tools back within a couple of days, the fact he still has them is evidence he’s not behaving in good faith. You, on the other hand, have behaved entirely in good faith, which means you are well within your rights to get your tools back.
Honestly, I think you can just show up at that guy’s house whenever you’d like and reclaim them. If this somehow feels awkward to you — and it shouldn’t, but maybe it does — tell him you’re working on a project and need your tools back. He should return them to you immediately, while you are standing there at his house.
“I went to a friend’s house for the Super Bowl that I hadn’t been to before. Our kids are in a lot of activities together and they’ve become good family friends, just never had a reason to go to their house before.  There were 5 or 6 other families at the party, but we were one of the first ones there. The other families have been to the host’s house many times in the past.

About midway through the 1st quarter I noticed a guest had his shoes off.  I found it a little unusual, but no big deal.  Then I looked around at everyone else and literally everyone had their shoes off except for the hosts who were wearing slippers!  As I get up to use the restroom I notice a pile of shoes at the door.  Obviously, being one of the first ones there I didn’t see this when I arrived.
Now I’m stuck.  If I would’ve seen the pile I would’ve followed suit, but now do I stay committed and leave my shoes on or take them off and tell my wife to take hers off? The hosts have young kids and dogs, so it’s not like their floors can be pristine, plus I find it a little too casual to just kick my shoes off in the home of someone I still don’t know that well unless they ask.  I went ahead and left them on. Did I make the right call?”
I probably would have gone shoes off, but I don’t think it’s that big of a deal if you didn’t.
I also don’t think you wouldn’t have needed to tell your wife, women are much more observant than men are, especially when it comes to shoes. I’m sure she already noticed all the women had taken their shoes off.
Some people might find it strange to take your shoes off when you visit a friend’s house, but I don’t find that strange at all.
In general, wouldn’t you rather have your shoes off than have your shoes on while you watch a football game? I don’t think it’s a big deal if you disagree, but I actually think taking your shoes off when you come over to hang out and watch a game actually makes pretty good sense.
After all, you wouldn’t leave your coat on while you watch the game either, would you?
This is pretty much the same, just with shoes.
Send your anonymous mailbag questions to claytravis@gmail.com, anonymity guaranteed.
Comments

Get the Daily Outkick

* indicates required