How did spring cleaning come to be anyways?

It’s spring — finally — but I’m not about to start cleaning.

But that’s what I’m told I ought to be doing. When the fairest season arrives and the dark days of winter are done, I’m supposed to be hauling the throw rugs out on the lawn and beating the heck out of them.

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I’m supposed to be giving the walls a good wipe down. I’m expected to wash all the table linens and dust the crown moulding and disinfect the light switches and scour the Venetian blinds and clean behind the washer and dryer.

Um, I think not. No one sees behind the washer and dryer, so really, what’s up with that?

When spring arrives, I prefer to steer clear of the duster and the rubber gloves.

When spring arrives, I’d rather do other things. Like going for a walk while whistling, say.

No clue how this spring cleaning thing happened to take root, but I imagine it was invented at the highest levels of the manufacturers of household cleaners. The folks at Fantastik wanted us to think, oh, that it would be Fantastik! to wield a sponge mop the moment spring arrived.

I’d rather wield a putter.

In any case, it perplexes me why there’s such a thing as spring cleaning, but no summer or winter counterpart. Do the blinds not get as dusty in July and the rugs as dirty in January? 

If anything, there should be something called fall cleaning, given that all summer long, people have been tramping in and out of the house, tracking in dirt on their bare feet and dripping their popsicles on the kitchen floor.

Yet, here we are: on the second day of spring. And there I was, just last week, gawking at a magazine’s headlines when I was standing in the checkout at the supermarket.

It was the magazine’s spring issue. Inside, I was told, I would find a recipe for a brilliant Easter feast, a spread on the newest seasonal styles and a perk-me-up to get my makeup April ready.

And then there was this: a checklist for cleaning up spring-style. Forget it, I thought, leaving the magazine where it was.

There’ll be no spring cleaning, not this week or next. I’d rather be whistling while walking.

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