I sighed, put down my pen and paper, and grabbed the Windex for a
quick wipe-down. Ahh, that's better. But as I scrutinized the
windows from the inside, it became apparent that the outside was
full of cobwebs that had collected dirt, pine needles, leaves, a few
million hapless flying insects and, not surprisingly, spiders.
that my brain had been notified of the situation, I knew that no
writing ideas would be sharing space with that knowledge. So, I
decided to clean the windows from the outside too.
This, I found, was not as easy as it first appeared. The windows
were on the second story of my house, and ladders are not an option
for a person who is so afraid of heights that she would rather give
birth to a 22-pound baby than ride on a Ferris wheel.
As it happens, I found a hose nozzle in the garage with a "Power
Spray" setting. Hooking it up to a hose -- which, miraculously, had
no holes in it -- I found that the power spray shot a sharp stream
of water about 25 feet into the air before losing its laser-beam
consistency. Now that's what I'm talking about!
I aimed my high-powered spray nozzle at my second-story windows.
It wasn't long before I realized that this was not one of my better
The beam of water went straight into the cracks and crevices and
returned at light speed, sending yard debris and fat, hairy spiders
raining down upon my unprotected body. I can do this, I thought
doggedly. I was going to get those windows clean so that I would no
longer have an excuse to procrastinate.
[to top of second column]
As powerful as my water canon was, I realized that the pine needles
were clinging to the cobwebs as tenaciously as the cobwebs were
clinging to my windows. But I persevered, constantly dodging the
bombardment of flying arachnids.
At some point it occurred to me
that my underwear was wet.
Did you ever notice that no matter how tight the connection is
between the nozzle and the hose, there is always a leak?
Well, when your arm is in the "up" position, it acts as a conduit
between the hose and the ground. The river of water runs down the
inside of your sleeve, puddles up in your bra and flows down your
stomach, with a brief, exploratory layover in your naval. Then it
continues downward, forming a small lake in your underwear before
dribbling down your legs.
So, OK ... not one of my finer moments.
The cobwebs continued to be stubborn, and I got to the point
where I was questioning my sanity and wondering, "What’s so bad
about dirty windows anyway?" I soon talked myself into ceasing my
power-washing operations, mostly because my wet underwear was
beginning to chafe.
I slogged into the house and changed my clothes. Then I sat down
in my comfortable chair, picked up my pen and paper, and began to
[By LAURA SNYDER]
You can reach the writer at
Or visit www.lauraonlife.com
for more columns and info about her books.