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My husband has the “throw everything away” gene.  I don’t know where he gets it from.  I believe it’s from his father. 

If I ask him to tidy the kitchen table, or God forbid, go through the kids toys for me, large trash bags get pulled out.  He looks at nothing.  Doesn’t question what a small piece of metal goes to, just chucks everything as a whole. 

I guess, in a sense, everything is spotless when he’s done. 

Inevitably, a few days later, it happens. 

“Hey, did you see that really important piece of paper I had on this table?” I’ll ask.

“No.  But if it was on that table, it probably got tossed when I cleaned.” 

“Have you seen last year’s tax returns?”

“Were they sitting on the table?”

“Hey, our first-born.  You spotted her anywhere?”

“If she was on the table, she’s gone.”

My daughter, on the other hand, has the “never throw anything away” gene.  Which is why her room looks like an episode of hoarders.  There’s no rhyme or reason to it.  She keeps everything out on the floor so she can see all her possessions at one time. 

Which is why I got a phone call from the house today while I was at work (it’s always while I’m at work that chaos reigns) and all I could hear was screaming.  Screaming from the kids, screaming from the husband, and screaming from the bird, who was screaming about the screaming. 

“You’re daughter’s a nightmare!” he yelled, all frazzled.  Wow.  What a news update.  Please, go on.  “WHAT DO YOU THINK YOU DO WITH THAT?!  IT’S A DEAD, OLD GLOW BRACELET!!!  THROW IT AWAY!!!”  I was guessing (correctly) that he was attempting to get her to clean her room. 

God forbid we should throw away the glow bracelets from Fourth of July. 

I got home to a…mostly clean Paigey room.  Except it looks like a paper factory made have exploded at some point all over her rug.  Not that we’ve seen her rug since May of 2012, which may explain some of it. 

I brought out the vacuum and prayed.  Prayed it would have the power and capability to get through the tornado strike zone. 

I heard lots of snapping, and popping.  Violent cracks as things, unseen to my eye, got sucked into the vacuum, and at one point, there was a loud, horrifying pop which sent a puff of dust from the bag area of my vacuum.  But ol’ Bessy kept plugging along.  I screamed at Paige a few times to pick up big items I encountered, so as not to piss off my vacuum again.  A random plastic top to something…maybe a hair spray bottle?  A lone, red Lego (we don’t even have Lego’s!).  A Q-tip.  A piece of plastic wrapper off God knows what.  All things that she picked up and then PUT ON HER DESK! 

“Throw those OUT!” I screamed over the noise.  “THIS is why your room is always a catastrophe!  You save all this random CRAP!  Just get RID of it!” 

The vacuuming got done.  And the room is…better….passable.  I will take a picture for my own records that the rug is blue and was most recently seen in November of 2012.  I’m guessing this doesn’t last a week.