Tuesday, October 17, 2006

Vacuuming Sucks

We've been experiencing big internet outages up here the last two weeks. Some odd weather and poorly aimed railroad fixes managed to cut the critical fiber cable for not just one, but both telecommunication companies servicing our area.

So yesterday, faced with no internet, no long distance and no phone or cell service, I was forced to take drastic measures to prevent the onset of boredom.

I vacuumed.

I hate to vacuum. The source of this hatred is simple and almost Freudian: when I was growing up we had this Kirby vacuum cleaner that must have weighed about 40 pounds. This would have been around, oh, 1979 or so. Kirby's are great machines, and one day I may even be able to afford one again. But that thing weighed a ton.

At the time my mom and step-father also sold Amway. This was old-school Amway, when it was still mostly about selling soap. Great products, by the way, if you can find someone to sell them to you without trying to talk you into being a distributor. But as a sideline to the Amway business they cleaned offices. Or rather, the whole family cleaned offices.

There was one building we cleaned that had one very long two-story staircase you had to climb to get to it. My job was to haul that old Kirby up those stairs and vacuum the offices. The thing was heavy and awkward, having no real good place to hang onto it when you needed to carry it. It didn't take long for that Kirby to become the bane of my existence.

If wasn't just that it was heavy, it was also loud. I mean, really loud. And while it had a bag, it was the pre-cursor to bagless vacuum cleaners: instead of using a disposable bag insert you reached into the permanent bag and cleaned all the dirt and stuff out by hand. Gross, gross, gross.

Oh, I hated that Kirby.

So as I grew up vacuuming became anathema to me. I'd rather do anything else. Like change my own oil, clean grout, or write a term paper. Wash diapers by hand. Drive in rush hour freeway traffic with screaming kids. Talk about politics with a drunk radical. Anything but vacuum!

So I grew up and got married to Husband #1 and we were broke so guess what Mom gave me when she had a central vacuum system installed in her place?

The Kirby.

Cue the Psycho shower-scene music.

Interestingly enough, the old machine was, oh, at least 17 years old and still worked like it was new. And it had all the hoses and attachments, including the shampooer. Yessiree, it worked like a champ. And it still weighed a ton!

The old Kirby has long since gone (along with Husband #1); we've got a nice lightweight Dirt Devil with a canister. But I still hate to vacuum. Nonetheless, as the internet-less day wore on I was rapidly running out of chores to do. I knocked out the dishes, caught up the laundry, rearranged the kids' room, canned some salsa. Then I looked around at the floor, with which kids becomes a repository for all kinds of interesting food artifacts, and decided I had to do it.

I lived. And they got the 'net back up. *phew*

1 comment:

toka said...

How do you poorly aim a railroad repair? And hey I quite like vacuuming, AND Im a student.

*goes off to check temp.*

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