There are a lot of things that bug me if they aren't done right. I guess my pickiness is a sign that I really am taking on the task of keeping this house together and making it mine. I feel a responsibility for every towel that gets hung (or not hung) and every dish that gets washed (or not washed).
But occasionally I do get help. John does a heck of a lot. And sometimes other friends come over and do a chore here and there while they're visiting. This is wonderful. I'm ever so grateful.
And yet ... they do say, if you want something done right, do it yourself. And when something is not done by me, it's hard for me to relax about it. It might not be done right!
There is one thing, one thing that drives me nuts above any other.
It's more annoying than having my good towels used to clean up spills or dry off the dog, and then having them thrown in the dirty clothes hamper where they will soak all the other clothes and make them mold.
It's more frustrating than when I walk into the kitchen and immediately have to move all the knives, scissors, and pot handles out of the "Marko Reach Zone" -- about 12 inches from the edge, currently, but always extending.
It's more damaging than finding someone has used steel wool on all my teflon pans.
It's worse than when I go to do laundry and the hamper is almost empty ... only to find later, after I've done half a load, that all the important laundry was on the floor somewhere.
It gets under my skin worse than when I am done with the shower and reach out for the towel -- only to find it's hung on the hook on the door, where I can't reach it. (And no, I do NOT want to get out and drip all over the bath mat. Wet bath mats are yucky.)
It wastes more of my time than those 10 minute "blitz" cleanups that happen right before company comes, where stuff is collected from all the visible surfaces and stashed somewhere where I will never see it again.
You want to know what it is?
It's dumb because it is exactly what every other human being in the world likes to do when they walk into a messy kitchen. I must be some kind of freak.
I hate, hate, hate it when all the dishes are piled in the sink.
I know it seems natural. You want to clean off the counter, so you put stuff in the sink. And hey, it'll get a soak in there!
No, no, no. Let me explain why this is the worst thing ever.
1. Some things that are on the counter are not actually dirty, or not very dirty. There's the knife I use to cut cheese -- I use it all day. Just for cheese. But if every hour I go back into the kitchen to cut more cheese (and I do), and every time my cheese knife is swimming in cold grody water ... then I have to get out a new knife every time. Thus resulting in eight knives getting dirty when only one had to.
2. Conversely, some things are extremely dirty. If you put a water glass that just needed a quick scrub, a knife that was only used for cheese, and a bread plate that just needed rinsing, in a sink along with the pan where I browned the hamburger ... the sink will fill up with greasy water and cover every single dish with a nasty greasy film. Now every single dish will need a serious scrub and not a quick touch-up. The same goes for germy things, like the plate I used to cut raw chicken on. Now I don't just have one salmonella-contaminated plate. Now I have a whole sinkful.
3. Some things should not be soaked. And yet they're always in there: wooden spoons and cutting boards that will warp, can openers and cheese graters that will rust, and brillo pads that will dissolve and make the whole sink rusty and nasty.
4. I use that sink to wash dishes in ... but I can't just whip in and wash a couple of things if the whole dang thing is full of dishes. I prefer to keep the sink mostly empty and have room to wash. I also don't like trying to fill up a water pitcher over a towering heap of dishes. I need to have my sink open so I can actually use it!
4. (And this is the REAL reason.) Once the sink is full of cold, nasty, greasy, germy, scummy water ... it will need to be drained. By me. By reaching my hand into that cold, nasty, greasy, germy, scummy water and pulling the plug. Trust me: the more dishes are in that sink, the more scummy water, and the longer they've been there ... the less likely I am to actually brave the nastiness and actually wash them.
So, if you're ever in my kitchen and want to straighten up, but will not be actually washing the dishes ... pile 'em by the sink. PLEASE.
Does anyone else hate this, or is it just me? What are your housework pet peeves?