Spring Cleaning Progressing Nicely

The first day was intense. I worked so hard my hands hurt. Why do I care if all the wires under my desk are washed and dust free??

The Terra Quartet playing for free at the 14th Street station. When I was passing through they were playing Eine kleine Nachtmusik (Mozart, very famous, even if you don’t know the title you know this piece).

Terra Quartet

Stacy Horn

I've written six non-fiction books, the most recent is Damnation Island: Poor, Sick, Mad, and Criminal in 19th-Century New York.

View all posts by Stacy Horn →

3 thoughts on “Spring Cleaning Progressing Nicely

  1. “Why do I care if…” is your classic metaethics question!
    See http://plato.stanford.edu/entries/hume-moral/#io or the Wikipedia version http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Is%E2%80%93ought_problem

    It’s what I’m working on for my thesis.
    Only you can answer it but if you were a “realist” (which I’m not, in the metaethics sense http://plato.stanford.edu/entries/moral-realism/ ) you might say that everyone ought to care because dust is not supposed to be on wires. Dust is bad, dust should be cleared away so it doesn’t accumulate on anything. Why is dust bad? Because it can inhibit things from working as they should. It is also aesthetically unpleasing. But why!? Maybe because in a perfectly clean and orderly world, everything would be in its proper place, and dust is random and has no place, so we have to get rid of it. Or something like that.

  2. You’ve made me mull it over and try to answer. It’s because a clean apartment gives me hope. It’s a clean slate, another chance to do better.

    Which is insane.

  3. Not insane at all! Have you heard of this book called “Home Comforts” by Cheryl Mendelson? I think I heard her interviewed and bought it on the strength of that, back in 1999 when it was published. What I like is her attitude toward housework itself. Chapter 1 is the philosophy of housekeeping (no surprise as to why I liked it.) She says (I cannot take the time to find the exact sentence, sorry) that living in a house means using it, and that housekeeping is merely the periodic renewal of what you have used.

    Maybe a clean home gives you hope because hope is about the future and having a fresh starting place makes all that follows new and fresh too. That’s not a bad thing at all.

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