Monday, 12 December 2011


I’m not moving a muscle. I’m just going to sit here on the side of the couch that isn’t broken in and I’m staying until it’s as cushy as the side where I usually sit. 

I’m not cooking, eating or drinking.

I’m not doing bead work. Or taking a shower. Or brushing my teeth. Or walking on the floors.


My apartment is CLEAN. Clean floors. Washed windows. Dust-free surfaces. Clear surfaces.
My ceiling fan is clean.

Go ahead, run your fingers across a baseboard, look behind something, just try to find a dustball.

My oldest friends (women barely in their mid-thirties, of course) came over today, toting rubber gloves and magic erasers and cleaning cloths and we all got moving. We broke out the mops, brooms, buckets and the microfiber cloths and we only stopped once, for pizza.

I got a little done last night and this morning - out of sheer humiliation at the thought I needed help to keep the place in decent shape. I uncapped a new bottle of Murphy’s Oil Soap (the champagne of cleaners) and scrubbed everything in the living room above floor level. Properly. I picked up the messes that follow me like so many muddy-footed puppies and I hauled the garbage down to the dumpster. But I’d never have accomplished anything close to this miracle of sanitation on my own and Goddess knows, I would not have got down on my hands and knees to scrub the kitchen floor.

I’ve been talked out of the fuzzy toilet seat cover and the little u-shaped front-of-the-toilet mat. Germ magnets, don’t you know. I’ve been kicked out of the way of furious vacuuming when I tried to help and thrown off damp floors. “Why don’t you go sit in the bead room?” Okay. Ma'am, yes ma’am. 

And here I sit in my fabulously clean shiny apartment, terrified to move lest I mess something up or blob something on a floor.  Maybe I’ll use the time to send up a prayer of thanks for friends who love me enough to get dirty and develop blood blisters trying to replace the sponge mop head.  That’s something useful I could do without causing an illicit fingerprint to show up on clean glass.

This state of household grace now has to last me through the upcoming month of biliousness and fatigue. Please leave your shoes at the door.  Better yet, let me stay at your place for a week or so. Then, when I'm in a nice chemical semi-coma and don't have the energy to make messes, you can dump me back here.


Roberta said...

Nothing like a clean house! Can you send them over to my house now?

Howpublic said...

Heck No! I'm keeping them all to myself!!!

Sue and Danny O'Mullan said...

So well deserved - enjoy your scent of fresh Murphy's oil! Shhhh..... I sometimes open the bottle and smear some around right before the hubster comes home! He takes a whiff - thinks I've cleaned something and all is good! Enjoy the clean - whilst being in your chemical semi-coma but also enjoy prior to and after!!!! Clean is clean!!!! I honestly will send up a prayer of thankfulness for you having such wonderful friends! So happy for you - xox Also am thinking and praying for you for your next chemical deposit....

Pat Barber said...

I am so, SO thankful to your wonderful friends. They, and you, have touched my heart, deeply. It truly gladdens my soul to see that you are so well and generously loved, Linda! Renews my step, it does.

Howpublic said...

I'll say "you're welcome" for Wendy and Heather, Pat. Did a fair bit of renewing for me too.

Sue - I had a vision of people like you and me hiding in back alleys, hunched over sniffing Murphy's Oil Soap like a couple of junkies. Made me laugh like hell!