Tuesday, January 30, 2018

The Hole and the Grammys


We have a little storage closet beneath the stairs off our entrance hall -- a sort of triangular space with a slanted roof, way too small to step into but large enough to hold boxes and shelves. My Dad's house in Florida has one just like it, which we've always called "the hole" -- so it's not surprising that I call our London version by the same name.

The hole tends to gather empty boxes from Amazon and plastic bags from those shopping trips when we don't have our reusable bags handy. Plus gift bags, tote bags, wine bags, used bubble wrap and all manner of small household repair items, like extra pieces of tile and painting supplies from the last time this flat was painted (which, trust me, must have been a long time ago).

This heap of stuff -- some of which pre-exists our tenancy -- had grown to mountainous proportions by the time I opened the hole last week and finally realized it had to be cleaned out. So Sunday night I pulled all the bags, boxes and packaging out into the foyer, and separated it into piles for recycling. I took whatever bags could be reused to work, where we sometimes give them to library patrons who check out a lot of books. I saved a few for us, but only a few.

Somewhat disturbingly, I found evidence of past rodent activity at the bottom of the heap -- scattered droppings (or what I think were droppings) on the lowest layer of bags and floor. But I don't think it's a sign of any current infestation. Nowadays, there's nothing to eat in "the hole." We used to keep bags of bird seed in there but we stopped specifically because I was afraid we'd get mice. I guess we didn't stop early enough, though I never saw any chew marks on the bird-seed bags or anything like that.

Anyway, I threw away the bottom-most bags and vacuumed it all out and now the hole is bare and tidy. And we have a mountain of stuff for the recycling pickup on Friday. You're welcome, Ms. Landlord.

In other news, I've been reading about the Grammy awards. I must say I know virtually none of the artists who won the top trophies -- I've vaguely heard of Bruno Mars but I couldn't tell you what he sings or even what he looks like, really. (I do know Kraftwerk and Leonard Cohen, for what it's worth.) I've listened to some of the nominated stuff on iTunes but it's mostly not my bag. A Times critic seems to feel that the awards still haven't fully acknowledged the power of hip-hop and, because of forces like subtle racism and ageism, the show remains "unimaginative and risk-averse." I just think that, at 51, I am officially too old for the Grammys.

(Photo: Near Aldwych, east London, last month.)

17 comments:

Yorkshire Pudding said...

A bare and tidy hole is a wonderful thing to behold.

Steve Reed said...

I knew you'd make a hole joke. It was inevitable.

Ms. Moon said...

I have one of those closets too. We call it the Harry Potter room.
I need to clean it out. Thanks for the reminder.
Also?
Grammys. Whatever.
Oh, the Rolling Stones did get one for traditional blues album, I hear. Which is sort of cool. I doubt they were there.

utahDOG! said...

The Hole was the storage space at the top of the stairs off of the loft, where you and I would play as kids.

The Bug said...

I like Bruno Mars' song Uptown Funk (especially all the different groups who've used it to make their own videos), but that's all I know about him.

Red said...

I think every house has a hole. Mice are pretty sneaky so yes mice would find this nice warm place to live. There's nothing like golden oldies when it comes to music.

Sharon Anck said...

Oh gosh, I need to do that type of clean out too. Many stores give you beautifully designed gift bags and I have a hard time throwing them away so they pile up in the hall closet. I can't reuse them fast enough. I'm glad to hear you say that about the Grammy's. I feel the same. I heard the winners announced yesterday on the news and I didn't know any of them. I'd heard the name Bruno Mars but that's about it. The skit they did with celebs reading from Fire and Fury has been getting a lot of press over here. Well, mostly it has been critical of Hillary for joining the group. I had to laugh at a Trump daughter-in-law who said it was despicable of her to do that. Yeah right!

Linda Sue said...

Our hole is filled with art supplies, I am fairly certain that rats will not like anything in there. but you have inspired me to clear it out and organize, thank you. When Erik comes up from Portland he always brings music and I always love it. He has tastes similar to mine , nothing mainstream, so Yes, I am with you, I have no idea .

37paddington said...

Most marked about the Grammys for me was the fact that only ONE WOMAN won a solo award all night. That was weird to me. And when asked about it the Grammy president apparently said women have to "step it up." Talk about tone deaf.

robin andrea said...

I think every house should have a hole, a place for gathering discarded bags, boxes, and wrappings. We keep a big box in the garage for that purpose. About those Grammys... haven't watched it in years and don't know any of the musicians anymore. Makes me wonder if music of an era is a strictly generational thing.

Cheryl West said...

I always hope to get more closet tidying done in the winter months but never as much as I need to. I must add that to my daily list more often.
As for the Grammys I did not watch either as I do not know most of the musician nor do I listen to their style of music.
Lately I have been playing more 40's and 50's big band cd's. That takes me back to my childhood. My parents were very good dancers.

crafty cat corner said...

This post reminded me of when I was young at home. Our gas meter was in a 'hole' under the stairs and I can't tell you the times one of us went in to put a shilling in the meter and dropped it, then having to get a torch and clear out the 'hole' to find it. lol
Luckily we didn't have any rodents in there.
Briony
x

Catalyst said...

If you're too old for the Grammys at 51, what does that make me at 77 (and three-quarters)? Well, I can tell you. I haven't watched the Grammys for years and I can't understand either rap or hip hop music(?) so there you go. I keep wondering what will come next.

Sabine said...

You are welcome to sort through our basement now that you have proven your tidying skills. I shall provide free food and drink - afterwards.

Vivian Swift said...

I'm 62 and I LOVE Bruno Mars! I told my sister to check him out but she thought his videos were crude...I don't think she got his sense of humor. My 85-year old mother likes him too.

I miss the '80s.

ellen abbott said...

don't have anything like that here. could have been the whole back bedroom with it wall of shelves but that's all gone now and I'm not rebuilding them. as for the Grammys I have never paid them any attention.

jenny_o said...

We have a walk-in closet off the master bedroom, and it became a catch-all during our kids' growing-up years. They referred to it as "the closet of doom" and would do anything to avoid their stuff ending up in there, so it made a good bargaining chip :)

I haven't watched an awards show in years, probably more like decades. But then again, I don't watch TV, so it's pretty hard to see the Grammys or anything else under those circumstances!