Monday, February 15, 2010


Just a quick warning: this post is on a topic that, in my experience, many of you out there find distasteful. You've been warned. Those of you who don't mind housework, read on.

I was cleaning house this morning. Just one of those things that had gotten away from me. I'd been staring at the dust on the television, the little bits of paper or whatever on the carpet, and meaning to get it done. For whatever reasons, I hadn't, and then this morning after breakfast I just went and got out the vacuum. When that was done, I grabbed the dust rag and polish. Half an hour later, I had a clean house.

Okay, I had a clean first floor, more or less.

While it's not like the place was a sty or anything, or even my sister's room, it certainly looked a lot better having been cleaned. It's funny how the little things can add up, and pretty soon you forget it can look a lot better than it does. Or maybe it's just the contrast between the before and after. I happen to be someone who likes things neat, even if the state of my desk sometimes gets away from me and makes it seem otherwise. (Speaking of which, as I look around, I see a project for this afternoon or perhaps tomorrow.)

It's also something where if you keep at it, doing a little bit each day, it seems less daunting than when you let it go for a while. Which is sort of like writing. The longer you sit and stare at the blank screen, sometimes the harder it becomes to put words down on it. On the other hand, if you manage to get in a little each day, it adds up, and pretty soon it's going smoothly and you're no longer faced with the overwhelming horror of the blank page. At least until you let it go again.

They say you should write a little each day. It's one of the reasons I keep this blog (along with another that's been sadly neglected). I have a couple of projects that are ongoing, and numerous ideas in my head. There's no reason, really, why I can't sit down and get at least something out each day. Just as there's no reason not to spare the thirty minutes or so it takes each week, at most, to get things clean. (Maybe an hour if I really get going and clean everything all at once.) No good reason at least.

I'm tempted to think sometimes that I ought to be able to channel my slightly obsessive nature more effectively than I do. Having a house that's less than neat bothers me, so too does having an empty page. But all too often it's too easy to walk past the vacuum or the keyboard and get sidetracked elsewhere. Then it starts piling up, and before I know it what was once a simple task now seems monumental.

Then I tackle that task, and realize it wasn't really so monumental after all. It just needed to be done.


JLC said...

I share the same feelings. I think I tend to put more effort in making excuses that I can't write on this day or that, then it would take for me to sit down and actually write!! Nice post!

Kathy said...

Interesting post.

Now excuse me. I need to clean my house!