Saturday, July 23, 2011

Coming Clean

I'm irredeemably proud of the fact that I love to clean, even when my own safety is imperiled. Not  keen on doing laundry; beyond willing to do almost everything else, especially if organizing lots of stuff is involved. Close friends know this, which means I get "wish you were here" postcards when they clean out a basement.

While I tell delightfully self-effacing jokes about "the upside of OCD," I've never considered my passion for tidiness and cleanliness problematic. I often get some of my best ideas while cleaning.  Other writers can go take a hike to get back on creative track, I'm going to go clean something...anything...everything.

Imagine my shock to recently learn that psychiatrists ask this to assess mania: "Do you feel compelled to clean house at 3:00 in the morning?"

I think that's the wrong question.

They should be asking, "Do you feel compelled to clean out the edges of your kitchen sink's grommet with toothpicks at 3:00 in the morning?"