Irish doctor with too many thoughts, too little time and a blog that's supposed to check in on reality.

Friday, February 24, 2006

For Desperate Housewives

and messy singles.....
Cathy Seipp reports on a new book by Cheryl Mendelson entitled "Laundry: The Home Comforts Book of Caring for Clothes and Linens" a follow up to "Home Comforts: The Art and Science of Keeping House"

"She applies social theorist James Q. Wilson's famous "Broken Windows" idea of urban policing to household mess; just as Wilson argued that unmended broken windows send a message that no one cares and invite criminals to do worse, Mendelson sees even a little household mess as the first step to domestic chaos."

I think I'll be buying this book - just for more lines like this -

"The old rules no longer seem to work," she writes in Laundry about the current devolution of sorting habits, "and the standard consequence of a breakdown in rules and values has ensued: the youth have become skeptical and nihilistic. They do not believe it is possible to figure it all out. They do not sort their clothes for laundering, and they sneer that sorting makes no difference. But they are wrong."

I must now go do my washing, if only to play my part in keeping total societal breakdown at bay.


Anonymous NineMoons said...

Hee. That's genius. I studied Wilson as part of my Masters and never thought of applying it to my inability to keep house. But it's true! Brand new vistas of a beautifully maintained home open before me...

February 24, 2006 5:11 p.m.  

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