Wednesday, October 25, 2017

Housework and Damned Statistics

Self serving, I suppose, but:

The old saw of Lies, Damned Lies and Statistics comes up to me all the time. Reporting numbers give them a credibility that they often do not deserve.

The recent Australian census indicated that women were doing the largest share of the housework. That sounds like a misapplication of the word "share".

Who decides how much housework there is to do in a house? If one person is happy with a dirty floor, a filthy toilet and mess everywhere then their idea of total housework hours per week is probably only 5. A person who wishes to live in a monument might have an underlying thought that 20 hours a week is the total required amount of housework.

That sounds to me like a question that needs to be determined between the couple, but just because one person thinks the hours should be higher doesn't make it the right thing.

So if there are a total of 20 hours per week of housework done in a house then the damn statistic is that one person is doing three times the amount of the other. Context: By their own choice.

Or as a person might rudely say:

"Everybody needs a hobby - if yours happens to be polishing silverware then who am I to stop you?"

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