Did you make your bed this morning?
My guess is that 100 percent of people would answer that question "yes." These are the same people who would deny watching reality TV shows, deny eating ice cream by the carton, and deny getting angry at all the stop lights and reckless drivers on their way to work.
In short, they lie.
According to a survey by the National Sleep Foundation (is there a foundation for everything under the sun?) 71 percent of us make our bed every morning. This is down from 1993 when 74 percent of us straightened the covers before leaving for work or school.
At this rate of decline in a mere 70 years or so only half of us will be making our bed in the morning.
As a child growing up in my parents' home I was expected to keep my bedroom straight and to make my bed every morning. That doesn't mean I always did it, but that's what was expected and I got in trouble if I didn't.
It was a good lesson to learn as a child and so when I grew up and went out on my own I remembered what my mother had taught me and I immediately stopped making my bed and keeping my bedroom straight.
Remembering what we're taught and doing what we're taught are quite different things.
At the height of my bachelor days amid all the clutter in my bedroom I could hardly even find my bed much less make it.
All this changed when I married and we came home from our honeymoon. It was then that I learned what the term "the honeymoon is over" was all about."
Wife: "Are you going to make the bed?"
Me: "There's no sense to making the bed. We're just going to unmake it tonight so why go through this endless cycle of make and unmake."
Wife: "We have to keep the bedroom neat."
Me: "Why. No one sees the bedroom but us."
Wife: "Didn't your mother teach you to make your bed?"
Me: "Yes. And you see how much gray hair she has? That's why."
Wife: "Okay, last one up makes the bed."
That seemed fair, but for a guy who liked to sleep in as long as possible the conversation had actually taken a cruel turn.
The truth is, whatever job you assume responsibility for when you come home from your honeymoon will be your job for the rest of your life. This is why I advise newly married men to do nothing for the first three weeks of their marriage.
I have been making the bed ever since the honeymoon, with the exception of those days when my wife is out of town.
On those days I email her old photos of our bed perfectly made to cover up my crime.
I think whether to make or not to make the bed is an issue in a lot of homes. Let's face it, we stay in bed in the morning as long as we can, leaving hardly enough time to get dressed, grab some food and drive to work. There's no time for bed making.
To combat this there is actually a National Make Your Bed Day every year on September 11. Congress can't agree on any of the trivial things in our lives like health, jobs and the economy. So they take care of the really important things like Make Your Bed Day.
To me, Make Your Bed Day means I only have to make my bed on September 11 and the rest of the year I can leave it a mess.
If we must, after we get up, there are several steps to quickly making the bed. The first thing we have to do is wake up the dog and cat and get them off the bed – no easy job.
Some people tuck in the sheets and blankets, make square corners and get everything so tight a quarter will bounce on the finished product.
I use a different technique. I have a huge, thick comforter and I leave all the sheets and blankets exactly where they are when we get up. Then I cover the whole mess with the big thick comforter and no one can see the chaos underneath.
This, of course, is known as a cover-up.
But, making the bed is not the worst thing about this whole process. The worst thing is trying to fold a fitted sheet after you take it out of the dryer.
It used to be that traveling to the moon was the ultimate impossible task. But we've been to the moon. Now the ultimate impossible task is folding a fitted sheet.
I Googled "how to fold a fitted sheet" on the Internet and got 1.6 million sites. I Googled "how to fly to the moon" and got 85.5 million sites, which tells me a lot more people know how to fly to the moon than know how to fold a fitted sheet.
I have my own solution to the problem.
I crumbled it up, toss it in a closet and lock the door.
And I hide the key from my wife.