CARPERPETUATION (kar’ pur pet u a shun) n. The act, when vacuuming, of running over a string or a piece of lint at least a dozen times, reaching over and picking it up, examining it, then putting it back down to give the vacuum one more chance.
No matter how high scale or low tech your vacuum cleaner might be, some of us out there are going to engage in carperpetuation. It could be anything that we think can be sucked up. A string, a cotton swab…. not milk rings. Save those for your cats so they can keep you up at night by playing milk ring hockey all over the kitchen at 3:00 in the morning.
Even though we pick up the thing and inspect it, instead of just toting it to the trash and being done with it, we toss it back on the floor in the hopes that maybe loosening it from the carpet might be enough to get the vacuum to suck it up. So why do we do this? It’s one of those mysteries we’ll never understand, like where helium balloons go when they fly away, or where the missing socks end up. Sometimes the universe hands us some silliness, and maybe we just aren’t suppose to understand it.
On my tombstone I want it to say that I didn’t forward the e-mail message to 15 other friends.