I recently hurt my knee being an overzealous housefrau. It is not worth it. I have to go back to my familiar mode as a house cleaner…..take a swipe with a dishcloth when you walk by things that are sticky or dusty. Back in the late 1960′s or early 1970s I read a little paperback book by a lady named Peg (her last name escapes me) who advocated leisurely housekeeping. She even said she had a great urge to start her own magazine and it would be titled BAD HOUSEKEEPING. She had some great suggestions for lazy housekeepers and cooks, like always having on hand 2 ingredients for emergencies…beans and ham. She had two recipes: one was for "hamnbeans" and the other one was for "beansnham". I tried them both and my family spit it all out, so I could no longer rely on lazy meal cooking.
I could write a lead article for BAD HOUSEKEEPING; it would be called "Why Organized House Cleaning Is Not Necessary". I would cite all the examples of how I do this job myself. It is not a good scene for a fussy woman. For instance, I get distracted. I open up a shower in a bathroom intending to clean the shower stall only to discover I have been depositing dirty towels in the stall, so I pick them up and head to the laundry area to put the towels in the washer. In the washer I discover some sheets I washed a day or more ago so I have to put them in the dryer, but I find a load of dry socks and underwear in the dryer. I get totally distracted so by the time I should return to clean the shower stall, I have forgotten all about it and start dusting the furniture in the living room. The phone rings, I answer, I talk, I hang up. I start up the vacuum cleaner forgetting I have not finished dusting. The cat is terrified by the vacuum cleaner and runs hysterically around me trying to escape. She flies up the stairs to the second story. I feel so sorry for her I follow her and try to locate her hiding place. In the process of looking for her I notice that there is an unmade bed so I make the bed and decide that it is a good day to hang out the bedspread and the blanket. I forget the cat and her terror and go in search of the clothesbasket and clothespins and make it to the clothesline with the bedding. After those have been hung, I notice that some quackgrass is already making its appearance in my flower bed on the east side of the garage so I go to the garden house to find a digging fork. In the garden house I find two flower pots I have been searching for, and I take them along with the digging fork. After digging up the quack grass and excavating as many of the white creepy roots as I can locate, I take the pots into the basement to wash them up in the laundry sink. The buzzer goes off on the dryer and I remove the sheets, and take them upstairs to put on one of the beds. There are already sheets on that bed and now I am really confused. I put the sheets away and go back downstairs to find the dustrag and the vacuum cleaner sitting idly. I once again tackle those jobs…sort of. I have to pick up a bunch of newspapers first in order to vacuum and I see a really interesting article in section B so I sit down to read it. I have also not done that day’s crossword puzzle so I get a pen and work on it. By this time I am desperately hungry so I return to the kitchen to see what I can rustle up for a low calorie lunch; all I can find is flour tortillas and cheese so I make some quesadillas which are not very low calorie. Oh well. I spill on myself when I tip over a jar of juice on the the counter and run to the bathroom to clean myself off. Then I see that blasted shower stall where I started two and a half hours ago, but I am so worn out from running around like a chicken with my head cut off, that I decide I have done enough for one day and head for the recliner to rest my aching knee and finish the crossword puzzle.
I wonder if there are any others who have days like this? I really hope so because I am not proud of my poor track record…. to say nothing of my haphazard house cleaning and lack organizational skills. I was never good at the low hurdles either. (my track record).
I do not know that Peg ever started up her magazine BAD HOUSEKEEPING. I should pick up her fallen torch and start anew as the Editor. I am really qualified to do it.