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Sunday, May 9, 2010

Sucky sucky

It's kind of funny that I found myself contemplating vacuum cleaners on Mother's Day. As a child, I didn't have chores to do. On the weekends, I'd help mom with the dusting or the laundry; in the spring I'd help with washing windows. I really didn't have any regular chores though.

The one chore I really didn't mind was vacuuming. It was the one chore my mom really hated though. Growing up we had a really heavy old Hoover with a metal head and a vinyl bag. OMG, that thing was like dragging a body around the living room. (We had hardwood floors in the other rooms) (Actually, there's hardwood in the living room too, but my mom has a carpet in there that covers the whole room except for about a foot around the edges)

When I moved out on my own, I had a vacuum we bought at a garage sale. It was a panasonic and worked pretty well. It actually came with me for 15 years as I moved around. I took it apart several times and cleaned dog hair out of it. (I had a Sheltie so there was a lot of long hair. A lot.) When I moved back to St. Louis of course the vacuum came too. Unfortunately, it had quit working about two weeks before I moved. I borrowed the apartment's vacuum to clean my carpets when I left. So my dad took my vacuum to a repair shop and had it repaired. It worked for about a year and then quit again.

In the meantime, mom had bought herself a lighter weight vacuum. A dirt devil that cleans well and is a lot lighter for her to haul around. So mom and I went in search of a new vacuum. Our first stop was Linens and Things - which was going out of business. I ended up with a Bissell Healthy Home - mainly because I'm a sucker for advertising. I have to say though, it's been awesome. That thing really can suck my carpets clean - I now have a spaniel mix who has long hair. I heard that it had the same technology as a Dyson because Dyson's patent ran out and now others can use it.

What I was thinking about this morning was the fact that almost all the boys I've dated over the years have an old Rainbow or Kirby that weighs a ton and that they swear is the best machine ever. Yet they all have kind of nasty carpets. Maybe they're just bad at cleaning but I suspect that those old vacuums just aren't that good compared to today's technology.

I get that both of these claim to be able to do all kinds of things other than vacuum. But I'm guessing that cleaning tile in the bathroom is quicker and easier with a scrub brush and some bleach than with a giant metal machine that you have to haul in there. And cleaning the kitchen floor? It probably gets cleaner with a scrub brush too. I love my Swiffer; but it doesn't get floors really clean. I once cleaned a boyfriend's floor with a scrub brush after he'd spilled some turkey brining solution and wet swiffered it clean. It was so sticky that I got out the scrub brush and bucket. That water was so dirty, I've not used my swiffer wet since then.

I'm not a clean freak; but if I'm putting the effort into cleaning it should be worth it. Who wants to spend their free time cleaning? No-one.

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