So many of the things that have to be done in order to have a party are just normal things that in a normal household would be done regularly as a part of regular cleaning. Some of it is not, like buying extra food and drinks and cheese for expected guests. If my roommates and I would maintain a reasonable level of cleanliness, very little preparation would need to be done in order to have guests over for a get-together.
In the past, I have intentionally left my place a mess to deter myself from bringing anyone home with me. I feel uncomfortable having company over when the house is a mess, or even when just my room is a mess. I certainly don’t normally allow multiple guests to come over when I haven’t taken at least some time to clean up before hand.
It is hard though, when living with other people and other people’s messes, to motivate myself to clean. Like, right now the living room (with the TV) is not very tidy, and it is mostly my stuff. I am the one that uses that room the most. But there is some stuff that is Iain’s, and no matter how much I clean up my stuff, I feel like it would be rude of me to try to determine what of his stuff is trash, or really to move it at all, so little pockets of “mess” would remain. This I can see immediately, and usually decide not to bother to clean since I won’t succeed in the act of cleaning. Or maybe I’ll decide to clean something trivial, like, I’ll clean off the coffee table and polish it. the room around it remains messy, but the coffee table looks great. Set my sights low, and succeed.
I have trouble with acts of cleaning that, when completed, immediately need to be done again (or appear to need to be done again). Like laundry. While I’m doing the laundry, I’m wearing clothes. Worse, I iron a lot of my laundry (which usually doesn’t get done on the same day as the washing/drying), and the timing of that leads to no less than an entire load of laundry to wash by the time I’m “done” with a week’s laundry. Or again, cleaning up any shared living space. Even when I’m done, it’s not clean.
Things that just need to be done cyclicly are much more reasonable to me somehow. If I have to mow the lawn once a week, it seems totally reasonable to me. If I have to do the dishes as I use them, that seems okay (except that I have yet to meet a roommate who can go along with this idea for very long), and the counters/sinks remain dish-free because dirty dishes go into the machine & it is unloaded as soon as it is run. No problem. Vacuuming, sweeping, mopping, all seem reasonable to do on a cyclical basis with the idea of “as-needed” thrown in.
But everything gets thrown a little off-kilter when there is no regular support from the other people who share a living space. The grass grows just as much in my roommate’s front yard as it does mine, but without impending events and regular nagging I can’t even get my “good roommate” to address the lawn. The “bad roommate” doesn’t even pay bills, let alone clean or help maintain. I’m certain it has cost the landlord quite a bit of money trying to get the pool back into order after the “bad roommate” decided to stop maintaining it (without letting anyone know, or know how to maintain it in his lieu). When there is a longish list of things that need to be cleaned/maintained on a consistent or cyclical basis, and two-thirds of the residents do not contribute, I feel like I shouldn’t be contributing either.
Which is how the house gets into the state it is now, and why doing all the things that should have been done all the time seems like a lot of work. Not only because I will be doing most of it, but because when anything is not done for a while, it is harder to start again when you do. So, I’m a little resentful of the whole operation.
I’m going to go type something else now.