Day 641: CHORE GOD

Up at 3:30 — bathroom, then cat, then my wife was up at 4 so what’s the point. I’ve admittedly been not great about exercise recently, but this was a good morning for chores: dishes, washing the stove and stovetop, two loads of laundry, prepping the upstairs for Mr. Butlertron…

…oh yeah, we got a Roomba, which we have named Mr. Butlertron. I was not in favour, secretly, but supportive… now that it’s here, though, I freakin’ love Mr. Butlertron. It’s pretty amazing how nice it is not to have to sweep every day — it really had to be a daily chore, in a two-cat house, and now we just drop Butlertron off on a different floor every day and let him have at it.

Anyway — chores done, and it’s time to head back to bed. This is, again, a weird way to go about things… but it’s working for me so far.


Getting Psyched for Chores 6: Adam from Kingston

Our last tip for Chores Week — but not least — from Adam, in Kingston. Possibly our most prosaic tip, and one I think will stick with me. It also reminds me of my grandpa!

My grandpa’s thing was “that’s better than a kick in the teeth.” I don’t think he ever had been kicked in the teeth, and I don’t think he was a teeth-kicker, but it’s an expression I use to this day.

That’s a wrap for Chores Week. We’ll be setting up the digest tomorrow — one long show with most of what was submitted — if this were something where I was drowning in submissions it might be a long show, but I would up just getting enough tips to fill the week, so there y’go.

Next week: get out of bed! How do you do it? What’s your one thing? Take a minute right now to call 1-833-JERKPOD or send a voice memo to You could be making a difference in thousands of lives! Okay, (a) not actually thousands, and (b) don’t actually do it, this is just a test.

I’m going to do a little bit better today than I did yesterday. How about you? Yes, you will. I can tell.

Getting Psyched for Chores 5: Michael in Toronto

Question the premise! It’s a healthy approach to most problems. And today, Michael in Toronto is doing just that to tackle the very idea of psyching yourself up for a chore.

Well worth considering: is psyching up a false start in and of itself?

Tomorrow, our final psyche-up tip from Adam in Kingston. On Sunday, the weekly digest of the bulk of our calls, plus some additional stuff.

Every day, we’re taking a tiny step forward. Not always a huge leap. Not every day. But we’re still advancing.

Get Psyched for Chores 4: Andrea in Kingston

One thing I’ve discovered this week is that I didn’t need to worry about variety. I thought maybe I’d get one tip, six or seven different ways — that’s not the case. Turns out lots of people do things differently! Who knew?

Andrea from Kingston is checking in today, with an organized/optimized way of approaching the dreaded chores…

Sensible and straightforward! Thanks, Andrea.

Next week is “Get Out of Bed” week — send your ideas and advice on how to get your butt off the mattress and into gear. Voice memos to, or call the Jerkline at 1-833-JERKPOD. We’re not really doing this! It’s fake!

Let’s get ready for another day and another small step forward.


Get Psyched for Chores 3: Max in Lennoxville

We’re doing this thing, you guys. This is day three of Get Psyched for Chores week, and Max is calling in from Lennoxville with a tip so simple it borders on genius. Maybe it is genius. I’m no genius, so I’m not really qualified to say.


Next week is “Get Out Of Bed” week. What gets you off the mattress? What’s your one killer idea that gets you up and at ’em every morning? Send a voice memo to, or call the Jerkline at 1-833-JERKPOD and let me know.

Folks, we are doing this one day at a time. We’re building an arsenal of small chunks of helpful knowledge from normal people who are doing their best while living their lives.

Tomorrow: we’re back to Kingston with Andrea checking in for her killer unpleasant-chore tip.

Get Psyched for Chores 2: JR in San Jose

JR from San Jose checks in with his tactic for getting psyched for unpleasant chores — this is more of a mantra, and a good one! Parental wisdom at its finest. Thanks, JR!

This is part of the big experiment for Jerkpod 2.0 —  feeling out what this format is like. Do I like it or not? What kinds of things should I say in the blog portion?


Get Psyched for Chores 1: Stephen in Kingston

I’m Matt and this is Jerk in Progress, the podcast about getting a little better every damn day. We’re building this thing ourselves. There’s no ads, no products to sell, no religion, no guru, no leader — just a bunch of people figuring it out and sharing what we’ve found.

As you know, this is kind of an experimental version of what I’m hoping will be the evolution of this project toward something collaborative and crowdsourced. This is the first foray into the new format — if I like it, I’ll keep it, and probably start preparing to flip the switch and do this in earnest starting in January of 2019. Why then? I’m taking a course this fall, and it’s going to absolutely destroy me to try to do this and that and some other things.

This week, we’re kicking it off with a pretty universal idea: doing the things we don’t want to do. I asked what gets you psyched up to do an unpleasant chore. And you answered! Let’s check in with Stephen, from Kingston…

…visualization is the key. Thanks, Stephen! Tomorrow, we’re going to hear from San Jose, California, and some sound fatherly advice.

NEXT week: what’s your single best tip to getting up in the morning? What gets you out of bed? Fire off a voice memo to, or call the Jerkphone at 1-833-JERKPOD with your best idea for literally getting your feet on the floor and your butt off the mattress. Alarms? Automated coffee machines? Music? A pet? Let me know. We’ll share it.
[Don’t actually do this, you guys! It’s an experiment!]

Day 528: Short run, good chores

Faffed about on my phone this morning so got a short run in, then when I got home thought no, that won’t do and set about some outside chores I’ve been meaning to tend to. Stump-killing with epsom salt! Look it up.

I’ve been having a weird time of it lately. Sobriety’s been on lock, but it’s been hard to get my head into a routine of good exercise and a sensible bedtime. I did get back on the checklist yesterday, which is great. It’s more of an anchor than I give it credit for, and the just 15 minutes of ukulele a night is showing results. I need to get back to the banjo.

I read an interesting thing this morning about diet — somebody saying they were a 220 pound person and needed to eat like a 180 pound person. That seems like a sensible idea if not taken to extremes. It also gives you an abstract mental checkpoint that isn’t negative… it’s not “don’t eat that, fatty, you’re terrible,” and it’s not “arrgh I’m dieting,” you’re eating… aspirationally. I kind of like that.


Day 462: Busy early mornings

Whoo! Up at four again, and I’ve been busy. Food projects, laundry, uh… more food projects, some correspondence. It’s pretty cool to be up at 6:30 on a Sunday morning and have all your chores for the day done.

Well, half-done.

We keep a rolling list on the chalkboard in the kitchen, and something about physically drawing a line through things is very motivating. Especially when you can see the lines tallying up.

Lots done, lots to do, but it’s a good Sunday to crack away on things.