Being a neat freak doesn’t disqualify one from having a man card. Being a little on the messy side is actually a rather common quality of the average masculine based Neanderthal descendant – with a slight bias towards those bordering on manhood and not quite there yet.
If you’re such an individual, having a predisposition towards dust mites and koolaid-colored carpeting probably feels like a natural environment. Evolution played a role in this. As a boy, you persisted that a clean room meant clearing a path from your door to your bed. Childhood behavior tendencies often spill over into adulthood.
Living this way works fine for a routine of nightly pizzas and video games with the guys. But now you’ve met that special girl and you’ve been texting each other since earlier in the day when you met. She’s funny and smart… and she just basically invited herself over to your apartment. You could say no but you’re a guy, so you won’t. Instead, you give her your address and tell her to give you an hour, knowing full well that your place is a wreck but still somehow believing that you can make significant change in that hour.
Your intention is to do a quick pick-up but only now do you realize what an absolute mess your living accommodations have become. You need to impress and you need to work fast. Here’s the quickest way to give your pad a shine and hide those caveman tendencies a bit longer.
Focus on smell. The tendency is to focus on smell last and that’s a mistake. Smell will linger in the air and betray all of your hard work. Take care of odor issues first and by the time you wrap everything else up, you’ll realize you want to always live this way. It’s time to unwrap that candle that you received at Christmas. Bake a pan of those brownies you usually save for midnight snacking. She’ll be impressed that you cook and it will sweeten the air up a great deal. Don’t forget a couple shots of appropriately timed Febreze in the air. Don’t wait until right before she walks right in the door to use your spray or her first impression of your pad will be that of sneezing and coughing through a cloud of Lysol.
Hide those clothes and dishes. Don’t just stack dirty dishes neatly in the sink or put those dirty clothes under your bed. They contain foul odors. Use boxes and trash bags. Remove them from your living quarters. This also makes the kitchen area easier to spruce up in a short amount of time.
Focus on the appropriate rooms. This really isn’t the time to offer her a tour of your home. It’s a time to close room doors and focus on the big three… living room space, kitchen and a bathroom that she’ll likely use.
Pick up the clutter, sweep and vacuum. You’ve got the big stuff out of the way but don’t stop there. Running a vacuum for a few minutes can make all the difference in transforming a room from grimy to glittery. A Swiffer WetJet can work wonders on your hardwood floors in minutes but there’s no time to make mop water if you only have a traditional mop.
Give the bathroom special attention. She’s likely to spend a few minutes there and you need to shine that bowl. Real men keep the toilet clean so make that a household tradition if you haven’t before now. Hopefully you can find that wand you bought a few months ago. If not, washrags are cheap so use one and throw it out.
Besides… now that you’ve met the girl of your dreams, there’s a good chance you’ll be leaving those old, unclean habits behind. The new you will emerge a more mature and healthy individual, equally concerned with habitat, organization and cultivating relationships and a lesser desire for video games and leaving pizza crust on the floor, right?
You’re all done. Enjoy your visit, play her a few songs on your guitar and eat a couple brownies with her. Cleanliness is next to loveliness and love is in the air. After she leaves, consider finally doing the laundry since all your clothes are bagged.