Sunday, May 24, 2009

When the cat is away

My husband is leaving me. For a good twenty-four hours. It was a last-minute thing, so I didn't have much time to pull together my plan. But here we are, approximately an hour or so before his departure, and I think I've got everything planned out perfectly. As soon as he walks out that door, the party starts. The purge party. Both large green rolling trash cans are already in position and ready to go.

I am going to be a machine. A cleaning machine. No, better than that. A cleaning Terminator. Hasta la vista, clutter! Oh my God, that was stupid and I loved it.

It's been a long, long time since he's left me alone in the house for more than a few hours. In fact since we've lived here, he's never spent the night away without me. That's almost two years. But, he has a somewhat serious reason for leaving. His older brother was diagnosed with prostate cancer the other day. It was caught early and the prognosis looks good, but it did kind of catch us and the rest of the family by surprise. Brian asked him if there was anything he could do and Bruce asked Brian to come visit. Considering they'd never even met until a couple of years ago and that for all practical purposes Brian had been considered the oldest sibling in the family, it's really cool for him to now have this close relationship.

But. I've GOT to use the time wisely and be stealthy about it. If I do a good enough job, then upon his return all he'll notice is the clean sparkly, good-smelling house, something that will hopefully distract him ("Look honey; isn't it SHINY?")so completely, he won't even notice anything is missing. That's the plan, anyway.

There's only one chink in the armour. What would normally be Trash Day, tomorrow, is not because of the stupid holiday. I can't remember if they'll come collect on Tuesday or if we have to wait a whole nother week. I pray that's not the case. I would hate for him to become observant all of a sudden and take a peek in what will surely be full-to-bursting containers. Then have something, most likely something of his, catch his eye. It's happened before. "What did you throw this golf ball away for; I'm going to need that...someday." Substitute golf ball with any number of small-to-medium sized annoying things that make up the detrius that is taking up way too much space in this house. And God knows if he spots one item, or even catches wind of my clean-out, he will go through those trash cans like it's his job.

You might be thinking right now that I'm very cruel. That's okay. Unless you have lived with a packrat, while simultaneously fighting your own hoarding tendencies, you don't know what it's like. Certain rooms are giving me claustrophobia right now. And anyway, he does get excited whenever I do a big clean or organizational project. We both feel better when it's tidy; I think that's true for most people. And for some reason, I get more done when he's not around. I haven't figured out why in thirteen years. But I do. The music will be on, the dog will follow me around until he gets tired and lays on the couch with a sigh and I will be in the Zone.

I hope everybody is having an enjoyable long weekend. If I get a chance later, remind me to tell you the story of the two baby bunnies I'm now caring for. In the meantime, this is the Cleaninator signing out.
I'll be bahck.
Sorry, I couldn't resist.


dearilou said...

Unfortunately I got my gap shirt dress last spring on the sale rack. But I do know that they have a couple shirtdresses on the website right now that look great. White and light striped.
Also, I just love a good clean out. I put it off and put it off, but it feels so good to get rid of stuff.

Anonymous said...

See? That's why I can't live with someone ever again. I don't want anyone else deciding what of my stuff to keep and what to throw away ever again. I'm not a packrat, but The Big Stupid Biker thought he would tidy up some stuff one day and threw out some terribly important paperwork just because HE didn't know what it was. I don't think I ever really forgave him for that! All I heard for weeks after while I was trying to obtain replacement copies was "I was only trying to help!" Hahaha!

Anonymous said...

I bought a dumpster here once...for my wife to decide what to get rid of. I told her point to it and I will carry it...I ended up getting rid of my stuff just to try to fill the dumpster...that was a mistake to think that I could outsmart her.

Anonymous said...

We've just spent two days doing the same thing, and I have listed so much stuff on ebay that my fingers will never be the same again. Our house is still stuffed with crap. I don't even know how to start to deal with it! Hope your clear out went better than mine!

Julie said...

I am not a pack rat. My motto is, "When in doubt, throw it out." I need organization and non-cluttered space to feel comfortable. Luckily, my husband usually complies.

Kim said...

I purged a little, but I got more caught up doing laundry, which took more of my time and attention than I cared for. Damn neverending laundry.