I used to think spring cleaning was a big lie created to give sitcoms and cartoons a plot line for an episode, but this week I kind of understand the concept. It’s above freezing in New York. Now I can do stuff in my apartment without hiding in my blankets. So I’ve compiled a list of my favorite cleaning products that you can get with pocket change at the bodega. Because just because you’re a broke ass doesn’t mean you have to be unhygienic and filthy.
People seem to be more anti-bleach than any other cleaner. I’m all for natural cleaners with tea tree and rosemary oils, but there are some jobs that require a cleaner that will make a poison gas if you combine it with something else. Spraying shower mold with lemony cleaner will only result in lemon scented mold. (Also, these natural cleaners are really expensive. Bleach is $2 a bottle). I remain a big proponent of bleach because I love finding new treasures on the street. While I get excited when I find things like Mr. Turtle Pools, sewing machine tables and mirrors with wolves paintings, but I don’t know what kind of animals have rubbed their asses on them, what drugs people have done off them, etc. So before I put my new black ceramic plates into circulation, I gave them a bleach bath. A little bit goes a long way, like a teaspoon per gallon of water. But I’m not a scientist, so please consult this table before dousing your belongings with Clorox.
If you’ve got a nasty drain clog, run to the bodega and get a bottle of vinegar and a box of baking soda. Dump the baking soda into the drain, then pour the bottle of vinegar. Let the science fair volcano erupt in your shower or sink and settle for a half hour. Then dump boiling water down the drain. You can also make window cleaner by combining two cups of water and 1/4 cup of white vinegar. (Admittedly, I’ve never made the window cleaner, but it always sounded like a good idea).
There was a very special episode of Garfield and Friends where a monster grew from the food Jon left in the fridge. Garfield saves the day sprinkling the monster with baking soda, and then he distributed the little orange boxes to everyone in town. After watching this at age eight, I immediately ran and asked my mom if she kept baking soda in the fridge. The answer was yes, and I’ve kept a box in my fridge and freezer in every apartment I’ve lived in to absorb the odors of dying food. I haven’t grown any monsters yet. Just remember to change the box every month or so. (And you still have to remove the dying food periodically).
Mr. Clean’s Magic Eraser
Alright, I’m going to admit to being a total screaming fan girl for the brand name Mr. Clean Magic Eraser. Why? Because it actaully is magic! You know those weird black smudges on your wall that you don’t notice until you’re about to move out? The one’s that you’d really like to figure out how they got there, but you’re too busy trying to fix your closet door so you can get your security deposit back to worry about? The Mr. Clean Eraser gets rid of them! And hand prints, mysterious slime on your refrigerator, bike grease, spilled coffee stains, etc. It’s worth walking to an actual drug store instead of a bodega.
Photos courtesy of augiemania.com, mountianpulse.blogspot.com, creativeacademics.com, pacscilife.blogspot.com,