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Previous Challenge Entry (Level 3 – Advanced)
Topic: Phew! (02/11/10)

TITLE: I Dust with an Air Hose
By Earl Taylor


I’ve tried. Honestly. There have been moments when I have felt the urge to clean; I gave it a valiant effort; but it isn’t in me. I dust with an air hose. It works well in my garage for general clean up after projects are completed; I am thinking it should work well enough for my wife and family.

My wife looks at it differently. She wants pictures taken off the wall in order to dust behind and before. She wants the walls scrubbed and polished. She wants the stair steps vacuumed with the brush attachment that gets down deeper and into every corner, crevice or seam.

She sees dirt and attacks it as if on an African safari, complete with an entire entourage of equipment and supplies; she hunts down dirt, captures it with a mop or broom, and hauls it out of the house like a dead lion strung up on a game pole between two native guides. I view it otherwise. I approach it like I was quail hunting; shoot one or two specks from a spooked covey, but allowing the rest of the birds to scatter in order to provide seed stock for next year.

I have tried to do up the dishes and wash down the counters; but I fail at that too. I stack too many dishes on top of each other and I throw in breakables that will clang and crack or inhibit the washing arm from turning around. I get the big chunks off the counter, but not the crumbs and the twist ties that litter the edges.

I aspired to do laundry once. But, jeans and bras are not friends and should not be seen together, so I quit. Towels I could fold, but my daughter’s shirts and underwear were bothersome to me, so I rolled them up tightly and stuck them in the bottom of the basket.

I love the smell of clean sheets; but I can’t make the bed right. I install the sheets, but my wife wants them tucked at the foot of the bed so tight that is stops the circulation in my feet. I toss the covers over the bed, but my wife wants it even on all sides. I grab the pillow with my teeth and slobber all over it as I cram the oversized sack of feathers into a shrunken pillow case, all the while, my wife insists her pillows on her side, mine on mine, evenly plumped and strategically placed.

I even attempted vacuuming with our hole-in-the-wall mounted, easy to use, long hosed, easy button, sucker-upper. I broke into a sweat moving the furniture around; I became hot and irritable, so I stopped doing that too.

Ask me to clean out your car; inflate your tires; mow and groom your lawn; take out your trash. Ask me to grill you a steak: I can shoot it, gut it, process it, package it and freeze it. I can thaw it, season it, cook it and present it to you on a platter.

Please don’t ask me to come in on Saturday and be a part of your routine. Remember, “I dust with an air hose, and I wash with a chamois.” Phew… enough said!

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This article has been read 517 times
Member Comments
Member Date
stanley Bednarz02/18/10
I loved your "safari" analogy; that was cool. It felt like you took a peak into my world, even how I like my feet free under the sheets.
Gregory Kane02/21/10
A heart-warmingly honest expose of how irrational women can be!
Carole Robishaw 02/22/10
Okay, were you watching as I attempted to prod my husband thru the weekly cleaning? This sounds like my house! Good job!
Beth LaBuff 02/25/10
Great writing, your descriptions of doing laundry are LOL funny! ... I hope this gets published somewhere.
Sharlyn Guthrie02/25/10
I love your sense of humor! This could be my husband speaking. Very well written entry! In case you aren't aware, the highest ranked entries (top 30 or 40)are posted late in the day each Thursday, and your entry is on this list. You can find it here: http://www.faithwriters.com/Boards/phpBB2/viewtopic.php?t=28899