turn the lights off, yo

(why are these bitches always smiling when they are cleaning?)

my house was always really clean when I was growing up.

when I say you could literally eat off of the floor, it’s not one of those The Definition Of That Word Got Changed In The Dictionary Because So Many People Used It Incorrectly kind of things, I mean, really, you could eat off the fucking floor.

I’m talking like, mom would wake me up at 5 in the morning on a Saturday with the vacuum by my bed, don’t leave your shit out or I’ll throw it away, kind of clean. a lot of people don’t know that my mother owned a very successful house cleaning business when I was growing up. she used to make me go around with her on Sundays. 409 was our God and the million dollar home at the top of the hill in La Verne was our church.

due to such an upbringing, you would think that at twenty-eight years old with my own place and a cat and enough books to fulfill the summer reading program at Canoga Park High that I would be a clean freak.

you would be fuck-wrong.

I’ve talked to a few who have had the same sort of idealistic childhood wherein the house sparkles like a fucking Mr. Clean commercial, and the way that it affected us is on either side of the spectrum. personally, I have much better things to do with my time than to clean, like read comic books or eat pizza or sleep. I hate cleaning, I hate doing the dishes, it it not my zen, it does not calm me, I would rather trade writing for a career in accounting. that being said, it’s unavoidable unless you’re rich and have like six people waiting on you (which I am not and which I do not), so I’m all for making things easier on myself. and in that regard, I can thank my lovely mother because she is always ready to come to the rescue in the event of a cleaning disaster.

a few months back I was sitting with one of my girlfriends at her place and she had this huge scratch in the middle of her dining room table. she’s all like, do you know how to fix that without restaining the whole thing?

hold on, I told her, picking up my phone and bringing it to my ear. mom, I say into the phone, scuff on an oak table, go.

wood pen! she says, all excited, it’s just like a marker. I got one in my purse, you need it? like carrying around something called a wood pen in your purse like a fucking tampon is the most normal thing in the world.

anyway, point is, I got a thousand of these little cleaning tricks. and though I don’t know how I feel about sharing such things to the world of the internet – I swear like I’d rather tell people about my mental illness than my knowledge of cleaning because at least then no one will bother me (I’m only kind of kidding) – and I was just cleaning the bathroom and I was like well, there are moms and shit out there that have enough to do on top of trying to figure out why in the hell they just bought the most expensive glass cleaner on the market and they still have fucking streaks on the god forsaken mirror and your mother in law is coming over and why. is. life. so. fucking. hard.

turn off the lights, yo.

listen to me: do not waste your money on that expensive shit.

just turn off the lights. I’m sure that the entire world knows about using old newspaper to clean your glass instead of paper towels, so I’m not really gonna go into that, but the fact of the matter is that you have streaks on your glass not because of the glass cleaner you’re using but because it is glass cleaner and you have that bright ass light on that you use to make sure your eyeliner is straight and the rays from the light are countering all that work you’re doing with your elbow and streaking your glass.

buy the watered down blue shit from the 99 cents store, it doesn’t matter, get some newspaper, turn off that awful bright light (I roll around in my house in the dark all day, light is like sun and we are at war with the sun – we’ll talk about that later) and bam, mother in law, your bathroom mirror hasn’t been this clean since you bought the damn house a hundred and fifty years ago, don’t bullshit me.

you’re welcome.


Allie Burke is the no-makeup-wearing, simultaneous-YA-and-Vonnegut-loving, Nike-obsessed bestselling author and acclaimed Selfie Queen of the Universe. She’s written in various forms for an indeterminable amount of time, climbing up the Amazon charts and ultimate geekery from small time book-reviewer to literary editor, until the authory culture pushed her off the bridge of artistic literature.

She now writes shit she’ll probably never publish, never shuts up about John Green, only reads books she wasn’t asked to review, and drinks coffee at all the wrong times.

She is the creator of Organic Coffee, Haphazardly. 


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