By Ethan Van Sice
I was determined to get down and dirty this time…
I’m talking about feathers to hardwood. Brushes to crevices. Even pen to paper, if I had to. Besides, what better way to usher in the Easter weekend than to do some Spring cleaning?
I was really going to try my hardest. I wanted to exceed my usual expectations of cleanliness. I knew that my former habits of simply hiding things from myself that made things dirty wasn’t going to cut the grease. Just so happens, neither does tap water. Or spit.
I started by making a list, because taking a scholarly approach to manual labor somehow makes it more exciting when you’re a nerd.
After that I gathered all my supplies: warm water, bleach, wiping papers, a broom, a mop, some pine-smelling stuff, some ammonia smelling stuff, a vacuum cleaner, a Bible, and a first-aid-kit just in case. I also salvaged a single feather from a dreamcatcher. I tucked it in my hat, called it “macaroni”, and went to town.
First item on my agenda was called “gather coins”. This had to be completed first for many reasons, the main two being that I did not want to damage my vacuum, and the tabletops could not be wiped down without the sticky pennies being pried from them beforehand.
Also, I figured I might get lucky to have enough to pay somebody else to come in and finish the job.
Four dollars and 87 cents later, my room had not changed much, despite the pun. I didn’t let this discourage me, however, and dove right in to the chemicals.
(This next paragraph was brought to you by our friends at lemon-scented Pledge).
The most rewarding part of cleaning is making tiny discoveries along the way. Not only did I find a privatized commune of hidden dust bunnies on the ceiling fan, but also the famous Easter Bunny himself fell heavily onto the floor with an audible thump.
A short sweep behind the bed turned into a trip down memory lane. Countless post-it notes, mainly scribbled with short reminders of tasks I’d at one time forgotten were retrieved and revisited for what they were worth back when I moved in to the place.
I found two pairs of toe-nail clippers and two-dozen of their dividends. Nine socks, each an eligible bachelor as their mates were no-where to be found. 3 hair ties of which I had no use for, a belly-button ring, a buffalo nickel, a 35mm bullet, and another post-it note reading “this weekend was amazing!”
Assuming these relics somehow came into play on the same weekend, I couldn’t help but agree.
Hesitant as I was to do away with the bulk of these treasures, the phrase “out with the old, in with the new” rang predominantly in my mind as they were disposed of. It was a new season, a new me. And before too long, my bedroom was transformed into something I could be proud of.
At the end of it all, I was able to step back and admire my work. It really did look like a brand new place, one that was 100 % my own. Each shelf and corner was organized to my own liking. Not a single corner was left untouched by my own hands.
Sharing my work with the world would be the icing on the cake. The most humble way of doing this was to wipe down the windows facing the street I lived on. That way, all who happened to walk by could peek inside and catch a glimpse of my brand new world, as well as the brand new me.
Feeling proud and adequately exposed, I figured now was probably a good time to get dressed.
Onto the day’s next calling, I tip-toed through the tulips still with mismatched socks, worn with subtle reminders of a departed, Winter valley; but the fresh scent of a new dawning was undeniable. I breathed in a newfound confidence to carry on, to stand shoulders to the sky, and to keep these small triumphs fresh in my memory.
Some day soon I hope to get around to cleaning the rest of the house. When the time is right and the take-back is adequately metaphorical.
Maybe next Spring….