20090710

The Dirty Little Secret of Bagless Vacuum Cleaners

I'm not much of a betting woman; but, I'm willing to bet that the fairly-new invention of the bagless vacuum cleaner was thought up by a man. I know I'll get mail that there are a lot of men who vacuum. But, it's reasonable to believe that this task is the responsibility of a woman. Again, I'm willing to wager on that as well. But, this writing isn't about falling into the entrapment of gambling; but, instead to acknowledge why I believe a person would have to be on the maniacal side to like this contraption. I'm one of those persons who finds vacuuming a semi-form of exercising and stress reliever all at the same time. I also prefer hand-washing a sink full of dishes rather than using a dishwasher; but, that's more of a green matter than a joy. But to stay focused, today I woke up knowing I'd vacuum at some point in the day. I just had it in my spirit. For those of you who vacuum every day, and in some cases, more than once a day, that's wonderful. And depending on the number of kids or pets, possibly even a necessity. But I vacuum mostly from a position of obvious necessity. And when I take on this chore, I plug in some great music and start the task. It's not like I own a mansion, so the process isn't overwhelming by a longshot. BUT, today's experience was so yuk that I had to write about it to actually relieve stress. It was so impactive that it took me back to my childhood. I remembered my mother owning an Electrolux vacuum cleaner. It was light gray with purely steel parts that reminded me of a train caboose. Her vacuum lasted through raising her three children and on into their adulthoods. I'd say she got her money's worth; whatever that was. I can remember her replacing it with an upright; but, I don't remember why. Presumably the one she had simply wore out or perhaps like many people she just wanted something new. I doubt the latter; but, all I recall is occasionally a dust-filled bag would be removed and replaced with a nice clean one. The dirty bag would be thrown out with the trash, and life went on. When I got married, today's experience reminded me that as gifts she gave me a food processor, a set of heavy-duty professional pots, and, yes, you may have guessed, a vacuum cleaner. As a single person in my twentys I had a vacuum that sufficed for the occasional time I was at my apartment and not working, or out having fun. But, in my mother's wisdom, she knew that the new life I'd embarked on would require a lot sturdier unit than what I had. Admittedly, it lasted the duration of raising my kids. With the exception of bringing it in once for a minor repair it was well worth whatever she paid for it. But, after my kids were grown and gone, I decided I'd invest in a new, bagless kind. What in Hades was I thinking? The bottom line is: I wasn't! All I saw as I stood in the store was a boxed item that looked pretty, and had gotten good reviews from the research I'd done online. SO, I bought it. After less than six weeks of use I know I made a bad purchase. Not so much for the vacuum itself; but for the concept. Every time I pull the canister out to dump the dust (YUUUUUK!!!) I do the dreaded rinsing out this filth, and wiping the whole unit down. The only sanitary place to rinse this thing is in the backyard with a garden hose. Some might say you can wash it out in the shower; but, no, not to be difficult; that doesn't work for me. It's like the job of vacuuming, which is to remove dirt, is amplified by having to clean up the dirt you just cleaned up! Yes, I guarantee a man invented the bagless vac. I'm grossed out as I write about it; and am having to comsume extra liquids to remove the perhaps imagined grit in my throat. I priced the newest Elextrolux model. We're talking $500. I'm hoping that includes free shipping and handling. Needless to say, that won't be on my list of things to buy; but, I will begin researching the best bag-required vacuum for half that price. In life there are some things you don't skimp on. A reliable vacuum cleaner; BAGS REQUIRED is one of them!