Sunday, October 16, 2011

Keeping it Clean

I'm not exactly sure how, but supposedly I'm related to this guy, a very funny blogger who writes about his adventures as a Slacker Dad.  In his post of 15 October, he confesses his true degree of domicile domestication by revealing some actual housekeeping activities he has committed even though no one would be the wiser were they to be "postponed."  To my way of thinking, cleaning something that is twice as dirty never takes twice as long.

National productivity could therefore be increased (and the economy saved once and for all) by simply extending the intervals at which many routine cleaning and housekeeping chores are undertaken.

For example, I have never, ever washed my truck.  Not even a little.  I figure, it always rains eventually, after which the truck looks as good as . . . well, as good as it needs to look.  And it will just get dirty again shortly after that.  So who am I to interfere with the natural order of life?

Keeping the Shed neat and tidy is also an exercise in cost-benefit analysis.  If the dirt, debris, dead spiders and gravel one finds in the Shed interferes with something important enough, then it gets cleaned.  Not until.

Even then, cleaning is done in as expeditious a manner as possible.  I use the most available horsepower, the largest broom I can physically push, and the harshest chemicals legally obtainable to get the job done fast.  Often, it doesn't come to that, and I encounter few situations that a damp microfiber rag can't handle.

"Honey, I'm going to clean the bathroom.
Do we have any more gasoline?"

Most bathrooms and lavatories in Australia are tiled, floor and walls, and by law they must be equipped with a drain in the floor.  That is an excellent feature which sadly goes unused by many of your non-male segments of the population.  A floor drain means that when a lavatory gets to the point where not even the spiders will go in there, you can get a garden hose, or better still, a Pressure Washer, and sort it right out in a few seconds flat.

I clean the outdoor dunny at the Shed by tossing a bucket of water in through the open door as I am passing by. If I happen to think of it at the time.

Another time and energy-saving tip I learned here in the Outback is how to do laundry without really trying.  The sad fact is that after eleven or twelve days, those jeans ARE going to need a wash.  But don't stress about finding a coin-op laundry out in the Australian bush! Just pry them off and put them in a bucket with a tight-sealing lid.  Put a few inches of water and some laundry powder in there, too, and seal it up. Then throw it in the back of your ute and go about your business.

If you have a second pair of jeans, now would be a good time to get them.  Not that there's anyone out there to see your pimply white legs, but jeans are essential protection from the plants and creatures of the outback, and the unforgiving sun.  Only tourists wear shorts.

While driving along any of rural Australia's many fine motorways (snort!), your bucket o' laundry will be jostled, jolted, shaken and agitated better than if it were in that machine at the paint store.  By the time you get where your going, which due to the sheer scale of the place could be days, your clothes will be clean as new.  Just give them a quick rinse, throw them over a branch, and within minutes they will be dry and ready to wear again.

Environmental cost:  zero (0) additional energy and about a half a gallon of water used.

Financial cost: $0.0002 in laundry powder. Why doesn't everyone do this?

Oh, yeah.  Most people have a washing machine at their house.

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