I only need to do ONE thing today, I mean in addition to the usual things like dishes and laundry and meals and child transportation, just ONE extra thing, and that is to clean the bathroom. And not even the whole bathroom but just the sink and toilet and maybe I will dab a paper towel in the corners of the floor and that is IT, no one is asking me to do anything actually difficult. I don’t need to negotiate for a hostage or clean an entire house or stand at a cash register all day, ALL I need to do is clean one sink and one toilet and then I can play Candy Crush with a clear conscience, it is impossible to comprehend the privilege and luxury of my life, so why am I instead sulking at my computer? Gah. I will just write this ONE post and then I will do it. So soon, I will do it. Before you know it, you will glance up and there I’ll be, smelling faintly of lemon 409, proud and a little grossed out, and the bathroom will be about half shiny.
I don’t even have anything to write about, so what if I went and cleaned it NOW and then came back? I even have my radio in there! I could be thinking of what to write while I worked and listened to music! Ug, I don’t want to. And to think that just last night I was bragging about how good I was at making myself do things I don’t want to do, which is a complete and obvious lie: I am TERRIBLE at making myself do things I don’t want to do. Or, let’s think positively: I am strong-willed!
This morning instead of cleaning the bathroom I toasted some pecans, which is one of those things that seemed like way too much fuss to me until I did it the first time, and now I’m like “What is the big deal, you just put them on a baking sheet at 350F for four minutes, stir them, put them back in for another four minutes and then you have TOASTED PECANS.” I also made another batch of the vegetable dish because the oven could be efficiently shared with the pecans, and we still have leftover turkey. Then I planted an amaryllis bulb. Meanwhile the bathroom waits in vain for an equal share of my housewifely attention.
One issue is that we have one of those toilet seats that’s easy to completely remove, for easy cleaning. (It’s this one.) This is such a great feature, so why does it increase the mental burden? Partly it’s that it increases the grossness: now the toilet seat has been in the tub. I don’t really HAVE to remove it, I could just clean it as if it were a regular toilet seat—but the toilet seat and I both know that I could do better. Plus, it’s gross but satisfying to scrub the hinges under hot water.
It’s also discouraging that Paul leaves his nail clippers to rust-stain the countertop instead of lifting his arm slightly higher to put them into the cabinet, and it’s discouraging that a number of years ago William lit cotton balls on fire in the sink and stained it with yellow-brown marks. The sink/counter never looks clean even when it is, and every time I clean it I’m reminded that I’M NOT THE ONE WHO MADE ANY OF THOSE UGLY AND AVOIDABLE AND PERMANENT MARKS. Why DO we live with other people?
Seriously, it doesn’t even take very long. I’m going to do it right now, and I’m going to time how long it takes, and then won’t I feel silly for spending so long avoiding it?
*there is the sound of country music, and someone seems to be attempting to sing along*
*the faint lemony tinge of 409 drifts to your nostrils*
*followed by a rather stronger scent of bleach*
*someone just swore, and there was a sound of a toilet seat landing too hard in the tub*
*there is muttering; it seems to be directed at people who don’t sit to pee*
*oh god oh god oh god okay that part’s done*
*the singing is sounding more cheerful*
*there’s the sound of the trash being emptied, so we must be close now*
Okay, DONE. It took 30 minutes almost exactly. I myself won’t feel clean until my next shower, but the bathroom is looking pretty good. The bowl water is bluish and bleachy, and no one else is home so I will get to be the one to flush it down later after it’s soaked for awhile. The mirror is cracked but shiny. The sink is stained but clean. The toilet seat…well, I won’t say WHO, but apparently SOMEONE let the bleachy spray soak too long, because there are now streaks in the whiteness. But we will not worry about it! It’s fine! It’s absolutely fine!