Wednesday, September 12, 2012
The Kitchen Sink
I was having drinks with my good friend and incredible writer the other night. We were sipping whiskey (she: bourbon, me: Jamesons) and pontificating. It was a well-needed chat after we'd both had a hard week, with lots of ups and downs and feelings.
My friend has recently hired a cleaning person for the first time in her life. Now, she supports herself completely and works harder than anyone I know in NY. Plus, she still makes time to write and drink whiskey with friends. So, paying hard earned money for someone to come clean her place once a month is a big deal.
A while back, I'd mentioned a seemingly superficial practice I had to her and she told me that night how much of an impact it's had on her: The simple act of always cleaning the kitchen before you go to bed.
I recently discovered the joy of waking up to a clean kitchen. Those early morning moments when you're half awake, walking barefoot into the kitchen, putting the kettle on, setting up the coffee grinds in the french press. The light is grey and the sun is shining into the window. This is my ritual every morning and it brings me pleasure every day.
Sarah confessed to the fact that she'd always though tidy people just didn't have enough going on, that if they had time to tidy, then they weren't thinking deep thoughts. She believed in the concept of the tortured artist. Art through struggle, blah blah blah... and how can you do that with a spotless apartment. Surely mess equals artistic depth?
But then you experience the early morning clean sink, and a light bulb goes off. And the next night, as your washing those dishes and wiping down the counter, you're thinking of the future you (8-odd hours away) and how you're doing something nice for her. It's so simple and so dumb. You're giving yourself a gift.
And the amazing thing is, once you start doing this one simple good thing for yourself, other decisions follow. You start treating that future you like a friend.