February 6, 2004

Good bad housekeeping tip of the day. If you notice that dust is accumulating, to the point where it's accumulating in the sort of dust ball you could actually pick up, of course, pick it up, by all means, but do you know that you can also use a ball of dust as a duster? It actively attracts other dust, that being its essential nature, its veritable raison d'etre. Then the newly enlarged dust ball can be thrown out in its entirety. Consider the many benefits to this approach:

1. No time is wasted going to get a rag or broom or other implement.
2. No mental energy is wasted thinking about dusting or planning to dust: the dust ball serves as a reminder when the time comes.
3. No damage to the environment is caused by laundering rags or throwing out disposable dusting cloths or pads (e.g. "Swiffers").
4. You don't feel like a household drudge, but more like a household comic performer.
5. It validates waiting for dust to accumulate before doing anything about it.

On this last point, remember the story of the germ-ridden sponge that recently played in one of the back sections of the NYT? Well, if you took that story seriously and started microwaving the allegedly vile rectangle, you could very well have set your house on fire. The link that used to work to get you to the sponge story, now only takes you to the correction, warning you that an insufficiently soggy sponge, microwaved, can catch fire! You may also remember that the article, no longer linkable, said that the least wiped-up kitchens had the least germs, cleaning efforts working mainly to spread the germs around. So point 5, supra, has potential to develop into a general principle (working best for conservatives!).

I was reminded of my dust ball good bad housekeeping tip when a chunk of scone fell into my hot coffee and, with no forks or spoons in the area, resorted to using a chunk of the remaining dry scone to retrieve the fallen piece. And here I was feeling that I had nothing to get the blog started with this morning, until the old scone helped me out.

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