takes all kinds

I clean for all different kinds of people. There’s this adorable ancient man, almost 90, lives way out on a country road. He built this great big house for his family out of wood. They logged right there on their 30 acres. Everyone thought he was crazy for building this far out. Of course, now there is lots of traffic zipping along that road as humanity endlessly spreads. Mr. Smarty Pants built it far enough up on the property that the road noise isn’t noticeable. The house has unpainted wood panelling. Actual real wood. It reminds me of a house we lived in growing up that was made inside and out of redwood. Wood is dark for an interior. I think both families wouldn’t do it again. And cobwebs really stick to unpainted surfaces. It’s awful.  

The vibe there reminds me of Grandma Jo, my mom’s mom. Thick shag rug, and plastic lamp shade protectors, all that was missing was the giant glass ashtrays that you could brain someone with. This home had lots and lots of collectibles, which my grandma’s didn’t. She was more of a Rat Pack kind of grandma, a real classy broad.  

China and dolls. He made special display cabinets with inside lighting for the many pieces that he and his wife collected over decades. I don’t like that stuff myself, but it was sweet to see all the family pictures. He outlived his wife and missed her dearly. But the central vacuum he had installed for her to use was a torture device. The floor attachment kept falling off, and the angle of the handle and bar was made for a 4-foot tall person. Maybe she was very short, I doubt it.  That vacuum is probably what killed her.

Another house had stinky dogs, stinky tea towels, and overflowing garbage. I never met the lady of the house, only the husband who dropped a fucking bomb in the bathroom before he went down to the basement to ‘work.’ Yeah, whatever buddy. You can drop a bomb, but you can’t take out the garbage BEFORE it’s spilling out coffee grounds and orange peels because the compost is also spilling its guts. Assholes.

Their kitchen hand towels, bath towels, and washing machine all reeked of mildew. What the actual fuck?!? They didn’t even have kids! You have no excuse, you’re just lazy and stupid. Maybe you’ve lost your sense of smell, which explains your choice of husband. And dogs. That’s the only house I told my coke head contractor/boss that I refused to go back to.

excerpt from Chapter 5 of Alexine Cleans

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