As previously stated in earlier blogs that writing eludes me, today I went back to cleaning, as I find that through scrubbing and vacuuming my mind clears and I can think of what I want to say. In fact this very blog is a result of cleaning.
Today I took on the bathroom walls, mostly because the bathroom is, I think, my favorite room of the house. To shower relaxes me as it cleans my body as well as my mind and through that gives me inspiration. Now in cleaning there is no way you can really do wrong and people who claim to be experts and tell you so are lying. Sure there are better ways and when you are on that level it becomes important which cleaning agent you use, but even by rubbing your hand over something and wiping what sticks on a cloth which you then wash, or just blowing dust off a shelf in the hope at least some of it will land on the floor to be vacuumed, you are actually already cleaning. The main thing is to keep an eye on where the water you are using is flowing, as wood and water generally don’t mix, unless there is a sufficient amount of lacquer involved. But for the rest… meh. Plastic, linoleum, stone and tilework… it is all generally built to resist water. And in a basic tiled bathroom there is really not much that can go wrong in that regard anyway. Another reason I like that room.
I personally favor general purpose cleaning, especially if it has pictures on the front showing what can be cleaned with it, and those little scrubbing pads you can buy a dime a dozen. I have actually spent nightly hours on my knees on the kitchen floor of a friends house after everyone had gone to sleep (and I couldn’t) doing the entire floor like that, centimeter by centimeter, tile by tile.
Now to explain, our house isn’t spotless. There is a general sense of disarray around the place with cases filled with books, ornaments, board-games and knickknacks, and even more of them on shelves, on tabletops and in piles around the place, a generous dose of dust covering it all. This dust actually serves a purpose in making it easy to spot things recently used. So burglars, no luck trying to sneak in and out at our place. We will know! To me, a clean and ordered house means a wasted life, as someone living there -or God forbid has paid someone as through that you are wasting somebody elses time in trade for money!- must has been cleaning it all.
To emphasize this fact of Jan Steen living arrangement, just last year I pushed out six books, four under my own name, which shows I don’t usually take time to spend hours dusting. I could name the titles here, but it would be much more fun for me if you searched for them yourself. But we are fine with it, even though I have a slight allergic reaction to dust-mites. But I am getting off track here.
To clean, to me, means to clear my mind. By cleaning or even by doing dishes when I am feeling down, it gives me something to do with an added bonus that I do’t have to do these things when I DO have inspiration.
So there… a blog about the Art of Cleaning in order to write. It doesn’t matter how or even why. It doesn’t even matter how much you clean or stop half way through. All that matters is when you feel lost and confused, you break away from eyeing the screen in desperate anticipation that somehow magically words will appear. Go do the stuff you need to do and when you have thought of something, return… and write.