I'm no Martha

Are you the antithesis of Martha Stewart, too?

Dana Gallagher/Martha Stewart Living Omnimedia/ AP/File
The real deal: Martha Stewart reads mail at her estate in Bedford, N.Y.

Some husbands bestow their wives with endearing pet names such as Honey Bun, Poopsie, or Sugar Dumpling. Those women are fortunate. My husband affectionately calls me the "anti-Martha." That's right. I'm the supposed antithesis of that world-famous domestic diva Martha you-know-who.

The day my beloved hubby dubbed me was a hot and steamy one. I'd been working hard in the garden and stopped briefly to gulp from a frosty brown bottle of root beer. My husband, who prefers the smell of the TV to anything live and growing, surprised me by showing up at the garden gate. With eyebrows raised, he drank in the details of my garden plot, best known for its zigzag vegetable rows and death-defying weeds.

Then his eyes traveled over to me, further widening at the sight of my typical gardening attire: old blue-jean cutoffs; a decades-old, red-gingham halter top; and discount-store gardening gloves with tips chewed off by the dog.

"It's the anti-Martha," he gasped.

I didn't know whether to laugh or cry. I flung a half-grown cucumber at his head and was searching for a rotten eggplant when he made a beeline back to his air-conditioned foxhole, the family den.

I mulled over my "anti-Martha" moniker for days. Such a name implied that I was a failure in my domestic duties. True, my husband does the ironing and bathtub cleaning because of my scorching and scouring issues. And my son informed me years ago that my attempts at arts and crafts embarrassed him in front of his friends and that I should be permanently banned from entering any hobby store.

In the end, I decided to embrace my new nickname and reach out to all the other anti-Marthas who accept their inner dust bunnies.

If you're not sure whether you have anti-Martha tendencies, I've designed this little checklist:


1. Do you define hors d'oeuvres as chips and salsa?

2. Is your "fine china" your everyday Corelle?

3. Is pet hair on your carpeting?


1. Did your mother give you fancy kitchen utensils that you have no clue how to use?

2. Is your culinary pièce de résistance spaghetti with Ragu?

3. Is pet hair on your kitchen floor?


1. Do window coverings intimidate you?

2. Would you rather scoop elephant dung at the zoo than attempt to wallpaper?

3. Does your living room furniture consist of castoffs from family members?

4. Is pet hair on your sofa?

Personal Appearance

1. Are you still buying Frost & Tip kits?

2. Is your trusty eyeliner pencil an antique?

3. Do you pick stray pet hairs off your sweater?

If you nodded in agreement to most of these questions, you're an anti-Martha, too. Come on over to my place and we'll celebrate with chips, salsa, and ice-cold root beer!

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