That was mean, Dad.

It’s 1.30 in the afternoon and I’m still in my pyjamas. ‘How unproductive’, you’re thinking, ‘how ghastly unhygienic and how grossly inappropriate of tomorrow’s future, dear golly’. But nay, ya wrong.

Out of all the productive days of my year so far (I’d calculate about nine), today is definitely top three. You’d walk into my room and ask yourself – or myself, really  – what have you flipping done all day? But mate, hear me out.  I’ve cleansed my spirit.

There’s this theory I pondered over once that says this:

external cleanliness = internal calm

How right is this, you ask?  It has much success in sounding intellectually superior at dinner parties and small gatherings specialising in self-help discussion. It’s also rather effective in the movement of procrasti-cleaning – yes, it’s a thing and you know it well.

But the most enlightening outcome of ‘external cleanliness’ is when you don’t know you’re doing it. You’ve opened a draw and synonymously opened a world of nostalgia and nostalgia means this. Your day is gone. Wanted to hit the gym? – nudda. Planned to tackle that assignment? Not happening (in all seriousness, it wouldn’t have happened anyway. Don’t blame nostalgia. Blame yourself).

You don’t hear the phone ring, nor your dog barking or your Italian neighbours talking excessively about making baklava which confuses you because they’re Italian, not Greek, but freedom of delicious-food-creation for all, right? This is because you’re holding in your hands a photo of four-feet you in a matching blue tracksuit and pink velcro joggers, standing next to three footballers your dad loved, but was too much of man to ask for a photo with. He made you go instead, which reminds you of the time he made you go buy emergency tampons for your mum at age eleven, when boy cootees – god forbid, tampons – were taboo. That was mean, Dad.

It’s four hours later, and you’re not even hungry, even though you’re usually three meals in by now. It’s because you’re You-Tubing how to re-start 2006 model LG flip phones – pink, no less, with jewelled butterfly phone art on the back. No luck, and it’s a shame, because you really wanted to re-read that text message you sent to yourself telling you to have your life sorted by March 2009.

But hey, be reasonable with yourself, don’t you know how far you’ve come? Have a geez through those diaries of 2008. Sure, you mightn’t have moved to Spain with your glasses-wearing, private-jet-owning, mango-loving model husband yet, or accomplished your goal of winning a lifetime’s worth of razors (love ya Phil Dumphy), but I bet you’ve got some nifty feats you never saw yourself having – trekking through the Lao jungle, buying a green bike with a basket just because you can, knowing what pig liver looks like because you worked at a butcher (yum) – and they’re valid.

So I’d like to make an adjustment to the theory: external cleanliness leads to internal YES! There’s so much you’ve done without knowing it, and so much more you’ve got left to do. So get out there and learn how to knit! Eve Malone wouldn’t even take her pyjamas off for that.


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