This weekend, H and I went on a date with our friend, Julie. It was to a little museum event of Andy Warhol stuff, held at the University I attend. The event was for graduate and professional students, trying to pry us away from our desks for a night. The three of us walked into this lovely ballroom to find tables covered in black tablecloths scattered about. There was a smattering of mardi gras beads in black and red on each table and a few red wrapped chocolate hearts. We were at a valentine’s day event and didn’t even know it.
We proceeded to scope out the scene that included a small buffet of crackers and cookies, a candy buffet, and an open area that we assume should have been the dance floor, but weren’t entirely sure as it was devoid of life. There was also a DJ playing music. He was playing such hits as Build Me Up Buttercup, and a Grease Medley, with a few duds thrown into the mix to keep us on our toes.
We went through the museum tour to find that it was a mixture of art from the University’s art collection and a very few things actually from Any Warhol. I’m talking about gems like a picture of his office manager and one of Diana Ross looking puzzled. There were also some buttons and a few other random things, but no actual Andy Warhol art. We then wandered through the other half of the exhibit, which was mostly African Tribal. We then stumbled upon a glorious case of pottery work.
Picture this with your eyes closed. A tea kettle. A tea kettle with a rooster on top as big as the tea kettle itself. A tea kettle with a rooster on top as big as the tea kettle being ridden by a Ken Doll sized man. This thing, this glorious man rooster tea kettle was in the little display case. They were all three painted in vibrant greens and blues. It was really a lovely sight. The man rooster tea kettle was clearly the highlight of the evening, followed closely by the excellent company. This weird faux-Valentine event in the middle of January warmed my heart and helped me remember that warmer things were coming in my heart and outside.
I am not a big lover of Country music. The twang, the dogs, the guns, the cowboys, the boots under someone else’s bed all hold little appeal for me. This song, a duet from Country Strong, may have redeemed all of Country music for me.
I’ve never watched Hoarders before. I have no compulsion to look at people’s dirt and have schadenfreude from the sadness of their lives. However, my friend Kristina was watching Hoarders and telling me about it in horror, so I decided I could give it a chance.
Oh my ever loving God! It was one of the most disgusting things I have seen in my life. I am so grateful I was not there to experience the smell because I would have almost certainly run in the other direction before I ever got to the house. The people featured on this particular episode were animal hoarders. One guy had 26 rabbits in his house. 26 rabbits running loose, even crawling IN THE WALLS of their rental house. That’s right. Not only was it beyond disgusting, it wasn’t even their property. I was completely shocked when the owners didn’t evict them.
The other lady was clearly mentally ill. She was verbally abusive and verged on physical abuse to everyone around her and suffered from a crippling fear of poverty and having nothing. They wanted to take away a goat and chickens from her and she just kept screaming that she paid to feed them and that she’d be left with nothing. She ultimately proved so uncooperative that state forces had to intervene without cleaning her trailer or barn.
I could not understand why they were trying to force life changes on these people instead of giving them the intensive inpatient care that they needed to deal with their issues. It seems so strange to go into a space, say “Oh it’s dirty.” and clean it, when the actual scenario is that the space is dirty because the person has deep psychological issues that need to be addressed before the actual stuff could ever be removed.
I was distressed by the whole experience. It sent me into a bit of cleaning frenzy. Despite my cold nastiness, I cleaned like a maniac for about an hour. The only way I will ever watch that show again is if I need some serious motivation to get my house cleaner, and honestly, I don’t think I would ever wait that long.