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How Clean Is Clean?

Aug 18, 2007
Housework is like raising kids - it's never done. Take dusting - please. Supposedly you're meant to dust after you vacuum because vacuuming causes more dust. Living causes dust.

I can see dust falling while I'm trying to wipe it away. Over the years I've replaced our dark furniture with light-colored furniture trying to camouflage the dust; but during that same period of time I discovered you never get rid of dust, you just recycle it.

Vacuuming is another thankless chore. After admiring the freshly vacuumed living room carpet, I have to walk across it to unplug the vacuum.

Cleaning the refrigerator and oven are thankless chores too. With their doors closed who can tell I spent half an hour rubbing spilled egg substitute off the refrigerator shelves or scraping pizza cheese off the bottom of the oven. Who knew having a self-cleaning oven meant you clean it yourself.

The bathrooms aren't self-cleaning; but because of the "Clean up what you mess up" rule, John is on a first-name basis with Mr. Clean and the Tidy Bowl Man.

Unfortunately, there's no Tidy Office Man. Because I've occasionally misplaced one of John's papers, he instituted the "Don't touch anything because I know exactly where everything is" rule.

Because guests might not understand that John has psychic powers to find things in his office, I put a decorative screen in front of it. Out of sight - out of "mynd".

In our old house John complained about dirty windows. That house had sixteen windows. This house has only eight windows and they're all within his reach. How ironic. John doesn't complain about dirty windows anymore.

I complain about dirty chrome. Because we have more chrome in this house, I spend more time using Windex - especially as John doesn't need it to clean the windows.

Cleaning silver is something I've always hated to do. Solution - I gave it all away.

I hate ironing too; but after scorching one of John's shirts when we were first married, he hasn't asked me to iron again. I also gave away the iron, but I wish I hadn't. A cordless iron makes a wonderful bookend.

Frankly, if practice really made perfect, I'd be an expert housekeeper by now. I'm not. However, if Elizabeth Taylor or Zaa Zaa Gabor ever writes a book about housekeeping, I'll buy it. After each of their divorces they proved to be excellent house keepers.
About the Author
KNIGHT PIERCE HIRST takes humorous looks at life.
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http://knightwatch.typepad.com
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