Around noon yesterday, I was in the middle of reading a book to hopefully be able to review when I got a phone call from my dear friend, B. He tells me he’s in town on business and that he’ll have a few hours in the afternoon and can we get together for a bit. So I tell him of course of course I’d love to see you and I’ve got to pick up the Bigger Bean soon and then take her to piano later this evening how about we meet the few hours in between? So he says, sure sure give me a call when you’re ready. So I hang up the phone and my eyes do something that look sort of like this:
Because I was still in pajamas, wrapped snuggly in a bathrobe and torn up red slippers. And my house looked post-apocalyptic and four-year-old-terrorized and smelled a bit like boiling cabbages. I tossed a juice box and a bag of mini muffins at the Little Bean and raced into the shower. I was done in five minutes, which, okay, if you know me at ALL, you know that’s impressive. I brushed my teeth and did my hair and makeup, all at the same time, and then ran as fast as I could to do the dishes, and then ran back up the stairs immediately because I’d forgotten to put on a shirt. I threw on the shirt B had given me not long ago, and then got halfway through the dishes, on the verge of just throwing the rest away, when B called to say he was done with his task. Like, way before I expected him to be done.
Cue screeching tires, squealing brakes, and this face:
So, okay, here’s what happens when you surprise me with an unexpected visit: You have to spend an hour and a half at the mall waiting for me to clean my house.
You know, it’s not that I’m lazy. I actually get really anxious in messy, smelly spaces. It’s just that between my family and all of their various activities and needs, as well as volunteering and shopping and sometimes blogging and reading/reviewing and sometimes sleep and other obligations, the hours in a day get the life squeezed out of them. And somehow, the battle always falls between two options: writing or cleaning.
It’s a no-brainer. Cleaning is for unobsessive writer people.
But this means that unexpected visits are…unexpected. It’s not that they’re unwelcome. I loves me some people. It just means please give me at least a few hours notice so that I can bribe my husband to clean the house.*
I don’t know, I guess it could just be me. But as much as I hate clutter, my distaste for plates with caked-on fried egg is not as significant as my desire to keep writing. Call it a sacrifice. I can endure terrible things to keep writing. Sadly, poor B sort of had to sacrifice, too. Maybe that just comes with the territory of being friends with a writer.
Sorry, B. I hope the cookies make up for it.
*Bribery is legal and totally moral in marriage.