Wednesday, 10 August 2011

Kitchenslut's Census Dilemma

Last night was Census night and as he worked through his eCensus several questions caused Kitchenslut to pause ever so briefly for thought, particularly when it came to the question of time spent doing unpaid domestic household work.

This question specifically related to the last week. The cooler season and some tempting un-tropical recipes from Matthew Evans in a recent ABC Delicious Magazine had inspired Kitchenslut to experiment with his pressure cooker during the survey week. Pea and ham soup, cottage pie with mustard cheese topping, and vodka-cured cod and potato fish cakes all consumed the week. While the fish cakes resulted in one of his less edible creations, the pea and ham soup was an outstanding winner!

How to work out the number of hours and allocate the time spent multi-tasking while simmering the ham hock? Shopping time is also included which would mean the time spent wandering around Rusty's and out to Marsh's at Stratford for a ham hock. Food and drink preparation are within the guidelines for unpaid domestic work, so is this really unpaid domestic work for many people or is it now a leisure activity?

The survey week was also the final week of Masterchef. Would households have been inspired by this to take to the kitchen and accumulate domestic work hours, or would they instead be sitting in front of the TV with takeaway pizza?

Kitchenslut is also body corporate chairman for his unit block and during the survey week spent an irritating amount of time dealing with recalcitrant resident disagreements on gardens, maintenance and financial issues which all seem to fit within the category of unpaid domestic work. Consequently, Kitchenslut appears in the Census stats as among the most overworked and underpaid in our community for the survey week. This presents something of a dilemma as it appears to be inconsistent with his reality!

Among other aberrant behaviour during the preceding week Kitchenslut was led astray by Hillbillywatch to rediscover the AM band on his radio and find out from John MacKenzie what was really going on in our failing society. There, he learnt from a talkback caller that "a certain religion" had a perfidious agenda to influence the Census results . Who could they be, he wondered, as he ticked the Islam box for choice of religion on his eCensus?  Kitchenslut now has a further Census dilemma of how to reconcile his religion with his ham hock?

Note: Kitchenslut was also curious about the question of whether he required the company of someone for body movement activities. This seems rather personal as there are certainly some body movement activities for which Kitchenslut at least prefers good company. It was presumed that the reason for such assistance required in the subsequent question would be within the category of 'other cause' 


Chuckie said...

KS... I share yr Census conundrum. In relation to calculations of domestic toil, my darling heart had the temerity to suggest there needed to be a separate option of '20 mins or less' as the five hours or less did not accurately reflect our particular circumstances!! But if wandering aimlessly around Rusty's & Marsh's dreaming of her next culinary conquest counts, I believe would have had no problem meeting the minimum standard!

p.s Can I suggest yr role as BC chairman wld more appropriately be registered on the Census form under 'unpaid voluntary contribution' rather than duties of a domestic nature?

Anonymous said...

Had a good laugh at this one. I wonder if this years Census will suddenly reveal a HUGE increase in the number of "Christians" in Australia?? We will wait and see.

KitchenSlut said...

Chuckie, I think your suggestion that my BC role should come within 'unpaid voluntary contribution' simply raises a further conundrum. Because that work also specifically relates also to my own domestic circumstances the time would need to be split. Consequently the Census is culturally biased towards the standard suburban block. At the recent seminar on population from OESR it did raise such questions on the nature of Census ambiguities including how FIFO workers would fill out the residency question. There are many ambiguities in there!

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