When it comes time for spring cleaning every year, TG and I just blithely wave our hands and wait for our maid, Fifi, to do it.
And wait … and wait … and wait …
Because she never shows up. You see, Fifi is imaginary.
(Admit it. You think I’m making this up. Sadly, I’m really not. Fifi has been a part of our lives since we were first married. This should really come as no surprise. I mean, I play with imaginary people all day. Why wouldn’t I have an imaginary servant?)
Now, you may not think an imaginary maid is very helpful when it comes to keeping a house clean—and you’d be right about that—but Fifi does have some good qualities:
1. She’s surprisingly affordable.
2. She can look however you want her to.
This is how I envision her:
(Yes, my Fifi is modeled after Hazel, from the 1960’s sitcom of the same name. If you can remember her, you’re probably old. Er, sorry. I meant to say, “You’re a classic!”)
But I’m pretty sure TG sees her more like this:
( Whatevs. I’m just happy he doesn’t expect me to wear a get-up like that.)
3. She’s a great scapegoat.
If something isn’t getting done in a timely manner (oh, like cooking or vacuuming or dusting or laundry or grocery-shopping … really, the list is endless), then we just blame Fifi.
For instance, take these typical conversations at our house:
TG: Doesn’t look like Fifi is going to make coffee this morning.
Me: Nope. Guess she’s taking the day off. Again.
TG: *sighs* I suppose I’ll make the coffee myself …
Me: Only if you want some, dear.
Me: Fifi didn’t get to the store today, so we don’t have anything decent for dinner.
TG: That lazy bitch. Maybe we should fire her.
Me: You really want to go up against the Imaginary Maids Union?
TG: Nah, not worth the hassle. Let’s just go out to eat.
See how it works? What Fifi lacks in efficiency, she makes up for in entertainment value!
Fortunately, TG and I have adopted an old Swedish saying:
That translates loosely as “A little dirt in the corners is better than a living hell.”
Which is pretty much how I feel about housework in general. Keep the house clean enough that people aren’t tempted to don decontamination suits before they enter, but don’t sweat the dust bunnies.
So, what kind of housekeeper are you?
A. I put Martha Stewart to shame.
B. With a little notice I can produce miracles.
C. If I shut the blinds nobody notices the dust.
D. I gave the dust bunnies names and told the kids they were pets.
E. Enter my house at your own risk.