Do You Allow People In Your Home? : LUSENET : Hedgehog Talk : One Thread

Are you a neat and clean and tidy person, or do you fear ending up one of those old people where after they die they have to tear the house down because the whole place is overwhelmed with 30 year old newspapers and cat pee?

I know which one I am...

-- Kymm Zuckert (, July 26, 2000


I can't call myself neat and tidy by any means, and I -am- something of a packrat, but I'm able to confine the mess to my bedroom so that the public rooms are ready to receive guests without too much cleaning.


-- Robert (, July 26, 2000.

Our cleaning habits are one of the reasons why we still play D&D--we have to get the ground floor at least passable (as in, people have to be able to pass through it) before our friends will game with us.

Otherwise, we only clean every few months. A friend of mine once led me through his place so I could borrow his bathroom; he apologized for the mess and I said, "I just walked through two rooms and only had to step over one thing, and that was a phone cord. This place is immaculate. Our house hasn't been this clean since before we moved in."

-- Colin (, July 26, 2000.

not even gonna' discuss it, i'm too ashamed. librarians are only organized at work.

-- nicole (, July 26, 2000.

I clean up before people come over, does that count as neat and tidy?

Truth be told, my house is totally filthy right now. All my dogs need a bath, the rugs are covered in dog hair and my living room has scattered debris everywhere.

I'll clean up before you come over, though.


-- Colleen (, July 26, 2000.

The latter, definitely. It's mostly just my bedroom that's a horrid wreck. I keep the rest of the house rather nicely kept (and rarely spend any time in any room but my bedroom and kitchen, thereby keeping it neat.)

I feel sorry for the day when my son has to go through my personal effects. I'd like to apologize in advance for scandalizing him. :)

-- Saundra (, July 26, 2000.

I'm pretty much a slob, but somehow I've been blessed with a roommate who cleans every day without fail. Kirkman can't go to sleep without cleaning and she does it without any bitterness. I can't imagine that world, but our apartment looks fantastic.

-- anne (, July 26, 2000.

Can you lend her round?

-- Kymm Zuckert (, July 26, 2000.

Definitely the latter. My apartment can get truly frightening. Which is one of the reasons I want to find a room-mate and move into a new apartment within the next year. When I live with someone, I actually take the time and effort to keep things clean and tidy. Living alone: be afraid, be very afraid.

-- Carol (, July 26, 2000.

The latter! Oh my, definitely the latter. I'm the latter...until I suck it up and call the Mini-Maids who rip through my house cleaning and sprucing. There is no better feeling than leaving a check on the (filthy) counter in the morning, and coming home from work to a clean house, having not lifted a finger (except those used to write the check). It's SO worth it.

I just deleted three additional paragraphs expounding on my intense slobitude (can you say "laundry mountain"?). Too embarrassing!

-- Kathy (, July 26, 2000.

I'm not naturally tidy. Living alone makes this worse, since one is not as bothered by one's own mess. If you have someone else there, you have to pick up your own crap to be justified in complaining about theirs!

I'm a procrastinator. I'm lazy. but I'm not emotionally attached to junk mail and fast food wrappers, which is a problem for some. (It's a variety of Obsessive-compulsive disorder.)

I'm on the DeCluttr mailing list, and I read the newsgroup also (alt.recovery.clutter FAQ). It's good for ideas, and I can post even small accomplishments there and get praise for it. I can even see people worse off than I am!

Anita of Anita's BOD and Anita's LOL

-- Anita Rowland (, July 27, 2000.

Thanks, Anita, for that link. I need that.

I am not naturally tidy, either. I am a total packrat. I even have papers and bluebooks from college and high school. I'm some 20 years removed from high school, and I know that I won't be using that stuff again, but I can't throw it away. I had the perfect opportunity to do so when I moved last year. I didn't. (I did finally chuck my prom dress, though.)

My place is cluttered rather than truly messy, I think, and I'm AR about the kitchen. It must be neat.

-- Laura (, July 27, 2000.

I am obsessive. Dishes get washed same day. Bed gets made unless I am horrifically late for work. Library books go HERE, borrowed books go THERE. There are days when my work clothes stay in a little pile where I dumped them in my bedroom, but usually they're either put away or in the hamper before I proceed. My cats fight me at every turn, though. Did I clean the laundry/book room? Puck will knock all the Bertrice Smalls off the shelf and shred his cardboard box some more. Did I wash the floor? Rumple will binge and purge on crunchies. Vacuum the livingroom? Cats to the rescue with fur on auto-eject. So you can come over any time; even if it's messy by my standards most folks don't judge as harshly. Only, if you're wearing black, you might just want to wait on the porch or find yourself in the amazing multi-furry dreamcoat.

-- Noel (, July 27, 2000.

"Amazing multi-furry dreamcoat"... hee hee hee...

My question to you pack rats is: Don't you ever move? If so, do you just cart all that crap with you? Every time I've moved (four times in the past year and a half) I sort through all my things and give away what I don't use anymore. God knows I'm not going to waste my time and sweat (or my $65/hour on movers) to move pounds and pounds of old zoology texts and cubic yards of stuffed animals. Of course people who "collect" items of no practical value, such as Pez dispensers or Fabrege' eggs, have always struck me as being afflicted with some kind of mental illness, too.

Of course, this is all pretty harmless, but the people who *really* mystify me are those who can go for days or weeks without cleaning the cat box. My cat sits on my lap and sleeps under my covers. Anything she puts her paws in is going to be as sanitary as humanly and felinely possible.

-- Kim Rollins (, July 27, 2000.

Yes, I've moved, in Australia I moved approximately 10 times in 10 years, and that's with staying at a couple of hours for more than a couple of years each. It's remarkably easy, when you hate packing and procrastinate on that little sucker until the 11th hour, to just pack up all the crap and take it with you to the next house.

I think my international move, where two guys and a van came and packed everything up for me, was the most de-cluttering and organised move of my life. Cost me $10K, but everything that came across in that ship would have caused me grief to leave. That's how I sorted through all my crap before the move. I gave it points for how much I could sell it for, and how much I would grieve if I sold it/gave it away/didn't have it in America.

For me, cluuter is all about not having enough storage items to Put Things In. When I moved into a house in Australia that had enough inbuilt wardrobes and shelves in damn near every room in the house, I suddenly became tidier. I had places to put things, places I wouldn't forget where the things were. In my house here in the US, no such luck. It was built in the 60's, and fuck knows where they put all their shit. I have a desperate need for bookcases, built ins, they have None, and the kitchen doesn't have enough storage for half my cooking stuff. Admittedly I have more kitchen stuff than the average bear, but still, this kitchen does not make the best use of it's space.

A common saying round here is that I'm lucky Jeff didn't marry me for my cleaning/hosuework skills. Lucky for him really, because it wouldn't and doesn't phase me. Doesn't phase him either, and when it does, he just hoes into which ever bit of grot peeves him and doesn't give me guilt about it. I do the same thing, so we don't live in a sty, just comfortable. I like comfortable houses, and that's not just because I'm a sloth, they're nicer to live in and nicer to visit. A couple I love to visit in Oz, they have two girls, two dogs and three cats , and a big over rambling house with books all over and rooms all over and it's great, it's a liveable space. Too tidy and I feel like a grotty snotty little kid, too scared to touch anything in case i leave a mark.

"If you've come to visit me, that's great, if you've come to inspect my house, for that you need an appointment". Forget where I read that, but it was instant credo time.

-- Amanda Page (, July 28, 2000.

I agree with Amanda's definition of clutter: the clutter in my apartment is Crap I Haven't Figured Out Where To Put.

I also agree that when it comes to Moving & My Clutter, procrastination has much to do with the keep/toss decision. Putting off one's packing until the 11th hour does make moving the stuff easier because one is all out of time to sort it.

But sometimes, a diffeent kind of mistake can happen.

Last March/April, I moved from Durham, NC, to San Jose, CA. The company I took a job with sent movers for my belongings. Before they arrived, I had tried to start packing. I spent a few days putting my books in boxes, sorting some stuff; I started a pile of clothes for Goodwill, and even threw out a handful of paper grocery sacks full of garbage. But my progress was slow, mostly because of how often I had to read old letters, reminisce about who gave me this gift or that, etc.

Anyway, since the movers weren't nearly as enamoured of my belongings' sentimental value as I and so handled them without my same gingerly and delicate touch, the morning they arrived, they had the 90% of my stuff I hadn't yet packed taped shut in boxes and stacked down by the moving van, if not on the moving van, in 3 hours flat. Including a 1/2 a bag of garbage I had going before they arrived. Just snapped that baby up, they did, in their whirlwind-like efficiency.

When I unpacked the 1/2 a bag of garbage in San Jose, I eventually filled it the rest of the way, and threw it out then.

-- Michael (, July 28, 2000.

I also agree on Amanda's description of "clutter". I don't think of myself as a messy person at all. Granted, I have my days when I don't have time to do the dishes or fold the laundry. In general I just don't have enough space to put all of my stuff. I live in a house that was built in 1898 and it only has one closet. One! I love my house but ONE CLOSET??! Geesh. Needless to say that finding places to put things is a accomplishment to say. Thus lending to my cluttered house.

-- Bill (, July 28, 2000.

I didn't mean for that "Why don't you sort the stuff when you move?" crack to come off nastily -- I just meant that when I move, I have to transfer all my stuff from its storage places into boxes, and it's just as easy to have a box marked "Goodwill" on hand as it is to load up another box that can only be labelled "Misc".

Of course after I wrote that I realized that I have four boxes that I always move without looking into them: three hold comic books, and the other is labelled something like "K's old papers" and contains my clippings (all the way back to my high school paper), outdated correspondence, photographs that didn't make the cut into my scrapbook, diaries, theater programs, ticket stubs, leases to long-vacated apartments, titles to vehicles I no longer own...

-- Kim Rollins (, July 28, 2000.

I'm neat but not clean. I know where everything is, but I have a really hard time keeping things clean. I try sometimes, but then I give up cause I work so hard and it doesn't look any better. That's when I call Magic Maids. They're coming tomorrow!

-- Catherine (, July 31, 2000.

Has anyone else seen those anti-crystal meth public service announcements from the PDFA? The audio track is this cheery, catchy tune and the visuals are a montage of scenes with this strung-out chick scrubbing her entire apartment with a toothbrush. "Oh, I can't sleep / And I can't eat / But I've got the cleanest house on the street! / Oh, meth... meth... meth!" I guess I'm supposed to feel revulsion, but the couple times I've seen it my thoughts have been something like, "You mean I can take something that won't let me rest until my kitchen and bathroom are gleaming? Hmm..."

Actually, my last place *was* just up the street from an abandoned KFC that had been partially boarded up. There was still the occasional car parked in the lot, though, and scruffy twentyish kids were frequently lurking around, so I started calling the place Kentucky Fried Crystal, in a semi-joking way. It was the ideal location for a meth lab, assuming the electricity and water were still hooked up. Then one day the whole place was swarming with police cruisers and the scruffy kids were all sitting on the curb like they were waiting for the bus, except that they were all handcuffed. If I'd known that shit would make me scour the tile I would've picked some up back then!

-- Kim Rollins (, August 03, 2000.

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