Swiffer is a kind of electrostatic dry mop made by Procter and Gamble. The idea is that hair and dust particles stick to a special fabric. Then you throw the fabric away and buy more. Whether you think this is great, or whether you think it's ridiculous consumerism, depends on your viewpoint.

Swiffer is evil, and bad.

Don’t flog me just yet, followers of the convenient and overly priced cleaning product revolution, at least hear me out.

I don’t mean to sound like the bitch I am, and it's nice for you that you're a pansy ass. But that doesn't change the fact that you need to learn what work is. Or what a real house is. Unless you clean every single day, twice or three times even, a Swiffer isn’t going to cut it. You’re going to need some heavy duty cleaning, and Swiffer sure as hell isn’t what I’d label heavy duty. In fact, it’s heavy-duty’s mortal enemy. It’s even marketed as such, the commercials do not show messy homes that are getting cleaned, no. They show already clean but for a few dust bunnies kind of homes. You know, unbelievably clean ones, where women put on lipstick and push-up bras to clean their homes.

I used to clean as a job, so I’ve cleaned my fingers to the bone, and need things to be very clean as I’ve been conditioned to make them at work. And let me tell you, they sure as hell don’t make industrial strength Swiffer. Though, to be fair, Swiffer is made and marketed as a home-cleaning product, I’ll stick to that. Though disorder is permissible within my home, uncleanliness is not. I can have fifteen binders, a hundred sheets of random paper, data cd’s, text books and other academic paraphernalia covering my floor, but I swear to god if I begin to see any kind of a film in the shower, I have a coronary. Germs and Scattered Items are very different. However, the use of every cleaning product that Wal-mart (whose evils are another article altogether) has to offer is unnecessary.

Is a swiffer really needed? Why is it that people feel the need to purchase a bounce sheet on a stick when they already own 4 kinds of brooms, an upright vacuum, a traditional vacuum and their house is equipped with central vac. Similarly, I have three kinds of dish cleaning items in my kitchen, not all that I myself purchased, but they are there. I use the crochet dishrag, every time, and you know what? The dishes are just as clean.

This isn't merely the case with swiffer, it remains true with other "miracle cleaners" as well. Why is it that people need more than one kind of toilet cleaners? Why, in fact, does it need to be germ free, as Lysol markets? I, for one, do not feel the need to lick the toilet bowl. If there are people that really, really need their toilet bowl to be 99.9% germ free, I don’t want to know how intimate they are with their toilet bowl . So I don't really see the profits of having a germ-free toilet, as its primary use is to, excuse my bluntness, fucking shit in.

New products come out every day, though I as well purchase Lysol for its germ-killing properties (unlike the toilet bowl, occasionally i do eat things that have touched the kitchen counter and table). Now, why is it that companies offer, and that people buy, bathroom cleaner, kitchen cleaner, and all purpose cleaner. Unless the latter is the product of false advertising (if so why buy it?) why do you need the first two? It's all purpose, hence, it may be used in the washroom and kitchen. But, people still tend to purchase all three. That’s nice for them, and the money that is apparently falling out of their posterior.

The phenomenon continues to other areas as well, where what the media tells us is convenience always overrules over basic common sense. As long as a thin, gorgeous, successful woman and a muscular, handsome successful man tell us that we need whatever the companies come out with next (swiffer sink cleaner!! now only 80 dollars with "sturdy" plastic handle!) we'll buy it.

And that's fucking pathetic.

Aristotle wrote that a virtue is the mean between two vices. Just because buying a product is not a substitute for hard work, doesn't mean that no new products are allowed. One should judge a household cleaning product on its merits, not on some hackneyed elbow-grease anti-capitalist philosophical mishmash.

So look here. If you have a clean house- which I do- and hardwood floors- which I do- Swiffers are pretty cool. I sweep and vacuum every two days, and still find that the fur from my two cats can make for some psycho dust bunnies. Swiffers are perfect for keeping hardwood floors dust-free.

Don't tell someone that was in the Army that he doesn't know what "clean" means, or what it is to clean the shit out of something. I can vacuum, sweep, and mop a floor and then run a Swiffer over it and still have it come up black. Maybe I am looking for an unreasonable amount of cleanness- fine, gig me on that. But don't say that Swiffers are worthless. They sure are too expensive, and probably wasteful, but they do what they're designed to do. I heard about them word-of-mouth, so I have no idea if they do what they're marketed as doing. If I purchased Swiffer products expecting the perfect robot lover perhaps I would be disappointed.

But as I asymptotically approach the unreachable zero of perfect cleanliness, I find it useful at times to swiff.

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