I was doing a little cooking the other day when I realized my blender and electric can opener looked like something that came out of a crime scene. As I scrubbed off the crusted-on gunk that had been on there God knows how long, it occurred to me that any day now there were sure to be stories in the media of one of the most eye-roll-worthy times of year: Spring Cleaning. During this time, you are apparently supposed to deep-clean your house in anticipation of spring. I guess the additional sunshine will reveal all the streaks on your windows and dust bunnies in the corners if you don’t.
Full disclosure: As much as I am annoyed by the annual reminders of spring cleaning, I am a type A, dyed in the wool neat freak. Just ask anyone who’s ever lived with me. Charlie has learned over the years that life is much more tranquil when he puts the scissors back in the same drawer every time, and my college roommates rolled their eyes at me when they weren’t lolling around on their unmade beds or throwing things on the floor. So why the spring cleaning hatred, then? Heck, this should be better than Christmas for someone like me, right?
Nope. Rather than inspire me, these reminders and tips and checklists make me feel inadequate. While my scissors do have a designated home and my house outwardly seems to have its shit together, please don’t look in that closet, and for the love of all that is good and holy, don’t look closely at the baseboards! There may not be clutter, but there is a good chance that there are dust bunnies under the bed that are comparable in size to my 16-pound cat. The organization is mostly there, but the cleanliness is a little lacking. I’ve been working on it, and things have improved, but still. Those baseboards.
I’m convinced that all this spring cleaning nonsense is the relic of another era, one in which full-time homemakers reigned. These days, with two-income families the norm, who is going to take a week or so off work to get the spring cleaning done? (And even if you could, would you really want to? Life’s too short.) Unless you’re fortunate enough to have outside help, you do the best that you can in the time that you have. I’m going to try to remember that when the inevitable spring cleaning articles come out and not get down on myself. I’m no Martha Stewart. Anyone horrified by my dust bunnies can bite me.