I live in an old house with ten bedrooms, each containing a different tenant. Unfortunately, I’ve cleaned up after people more times than I could possibly count. I’ll go into the kitchen to make some food, and find a messy sink or countertop. I take pride in my living space, even if it is shared, so I tend to tidy up. The trash and recycle containers are regularly full, but ignored, as they seem to hope someone else will take them out. This is despite the fact you couldn’t possibly place them any closer to the outside receptacles. The trash can lid gets all sorts of icky with remains of food and such, and stays that way until I can’t take it anymore and thoroughly wash it.
There are small labels on the stove, not placed by me, reminding people to clean up anything they dirty, but they’re conveniently ignored. I was recently up late one night, and went in the kitchen for something. I was disgusted by how dirty the kitchen had gotten, and knowing I wouldn’t be going to bed anytime soon, started cleaning. I made the kitchen sparkle that night. Countertops, microwave, stove top, oven front, sink, and trash can lid were all thoroughly washed. Still grossed out by the floor, I then swept and mopped it. My roommates probably thought magical cleaning fairies arrived during the night and made the kitchen look that way.
We’ve had ants showing up when there’s a reason for them to be there. Namely, edible messes left by messy roommates. Not long after my thorough kitchen cleaning, I spotted a trail of ants coming up to the counter to yet another mess left by someone. Where where they coming from, though? I saw a trail of them coming from the kitchen drawer next to mine, as well as the cabinet below it. I pulled the drawer open, and found a used kitchen knife that was placed back in the drawer without being washed. While the ants surely appreciated this, and other messy roommate habits, I did not. I took a few photos and finally emailed the landlord to complain about this situation, and general messy roommate issues. While I wasn’t sure who the guilty parties were, I at least knew who was responsible for the latest round of ants. And honestly, if you have habits like that, this is probably not your first offense.
I’ve complained about this roommate before, and perhaps I’m not the only one. The landlord indicated they would be asking them to move out. I am doubtful they are the only messy roommate in the whole house, but I’m curious to see what happens when they leave. Part of the problem with living amongst this many people is figuring out who is leaving messes. As the person who keeps common-use items like toilet paper, hand soap, dish soap, sponges, and trash bags stocked, you can imagine I get frustrated when I find the messes people leave behind. I’ve even purchased bags for the vacuum, and tried fixing it when it wasn’t working properly. I’ll occasionally run into the guy who fixes things around here, and he said the vacuum had been used to suck up items like used condoms, and even a sock.
Do people really have such disregard for cleanliness, and respect for others who share the residence with them and have to use the same bathrooms, kitchen, and vacuum? I keep the bathroom stocked with toilet paper, yet I regularly walk in to find an empty roll. There are tons of rolls underneath the vanity, and you can’t even take ten seconds to put a new one on? Speaking of toilets, there have been several times I’ve entered the bathroom to find someone left their business behind, un-flushed. There’s also the messy vanity with what appears to be facial hair trimmings left behind, along with the general buildup of grime, and remains of something dumped down the sink at some point. It’s also frustrating when someone prepares food in the kitchen, and leaves behind pieces of food in the sink. I could go on, but it just serves to increase my frustration.
I get really annoyed when I find myself cleaning up after other people. People have told me to simply stop doing it. Sometimes I am successful in this regard, but not always. As someone who doesn’t care for living in a messy environment, and takes some pride in their living space, this is easier said than done. By instituting a laissez-faire attitude about it, I feel as though the messiness would be increased, or somewhat encouraged. I don’t want to become part of the problem.
Who would have thought cleaning up after yourself would be so difficult, or need to be instituted as a rule? I wish this particular rule wasn’t so difficult to enforce.