The Spud’s new nickname is henceforth Pigpen

by Janie Jones

Children are disgusting creatures.  Or at least the spud is.  She has absolutely no need for personal hygiene or cleanliness.  Bath is a heinous 4 letter word, and clean your room apparently means wipe everything off any surface and jam it into the closet, the nightstand cupboards or under the bed.

I would run the vacuum in there occasionally, but hounding her to clean her room well enough to do a major cleaning was just something I didn’t have the energy for more than twice a year, and then it was done while she was visiting her dad and generally involved several trash bags.  Now that she’s gone I’m cleaning out and the walls, oh my stars, what has that child done to the walls?  And the strange greasy coating on the bottoms of the drawers of her toy chest?  What’s with that?  And the brownish grey smudge running along the hem of her white bed skirt is also perplexing in a disturbing way.

The spud preferred to keep the drapes pulled, and the lights low, so with my not so stellar eyesight I didn’t always realize how bad it was in there.  She also prefers to be sweltering hot, so when we’d throw open the windows to freshen the air, she’d come right in and shut them.  So her room had developed an unpleasant funky smell.  Part of that smell was determined to be several apple cores, juice boxes and other snacks discarded into her wastepaper basket which was never emptied.  Getting rid of the ants and the bugs was much easier once I discovered this nasty habit.  It was doubly infuriating because the rule is supposed to be no food in your room, but when I’m not home, who’s to notice?  Only a small swarm of fruit flies and a colony of ants.  Luckily this was discovered before she left and part of her punishment was scraping all the moldy rotten food matter out of the can.

So, I will have to repaint in there, and that’s a project that will have to wait until after I get some other expenses taken care of.  For now I’ve properly cleaned out all the drawers, closets and cupboards.  I’ve changed all the linens and washed all the bedding.  I’ve done as thorough a vacuum as possible without moving out the furniture, and you know what?  It’s starting to look like a pleasant bedroom and not some ghetto slum.

Still I am flabbergasted by how much mess one small person can make, and how long it will take to repair the damage.  *shudder*  I need a shower.


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