“Ain’t nobody dope as me; I’m just so fresh, so clean!”
— OutKast, “So Fresh So Clean”, Stankonia (2000)
This is your house on parenthood.
Following a weekend church retreat to picturesque Muskoka Lakes where Walmer Road Baptist Church’s congregation studied The Word, found peace in tranquil nature, and connected with those they wouldn’t normally chat with otherwise… all was not well in Casa de Palmer.
A restful weekend in the woods it was not for the recently-expanded Palmer family, with new surroundings, smells and sounds driving their infant son to crying fits well into the wee hours of the morning. Sneaking naps in through the weekend while they swapped off on parenting duties, it was all they could do to survive and muster the energy to drive the hours back home to where things made sense.
But as exhausted as we were, our home was in disarray. Dishes needed washing; toys needed returning to their various hidey holes — we were running on fumes and there was no shortage of chores screaming for attention lest we become consumed by the filth we’d accumulated.
With time against us and only the two of us available to turn this hovel upside down, I knew it would take more than a casual Sunday cleaning to get the house as pristine as we knew it could be — I needed the big guns to make short work of all the dust and grime that’d taken up residence.
It was time to attack this problem head-on. It was time to put on my big boy pants and do something about it.
Ladies and gentlemen — it was time to get my Man Clean on!
man clean [man kleen]
1. Empowering guys to boast about their cleaning swagger
2. Using the best tools, like Swiffer to get the job done right
While I don’t love cleaning, I’ve learned to come to terms with it, popping in the earbuds and scrubbing every surface that dare cross my path. But the world sees it way differently, with near a third of Canadian women surveyed thinking “Man Clean” a poor cleaning job done by a man, when really 86% of Canadian guys contribute to the household cleaning; 91% of these getting the job done at least satisfactorily, but only 54% of them getting recognition for it1!
So knowing that some spit and polish wouldn’t be enough to get the job done, I had a chat with Mr. Amir Johnson, forward-centre for the Toronto Raptors and Swiffer Man Clean Ambassador for some tips and tricks on getting that Man Clean done right!
1 Methodology: For the Swiffer commissioned study, a national sample of Canadians 18 years of age and older was randomly selected from TNS Canada’s Internet research panel and invited to complete an In total, 1001 adults completed the questionnaire between August 14 and 18, 2014. The survey data were weighted to reflect the demographic distribution of Canadian consumers.
Now — my friends know that I’m not the biggest on sports: I go to the odd ball game and hit bars with my sport-loving friends, but I Googled all up in Amir’s business before this interview, a wise move as we discussed summer, Swiffer, and — obviously — tossing the rock on the court!
The Time Casey Interviewed a B-Ball Star
— Amir Johnson (@IamAmirJohnson) September 16, 2014
Casey E. Palmer: Hey, Amir, how you doing? How do you get your ManClean on? What sets you apart from the rest?
Amir Johnson: Man Clean’s all about empowering guys to boast about their cleaning swagger and Swiffer’s here to help them do it!
It’s mind over matter — I rock Man Clean by knowing it’s a GOOD thing, and proof that we can clean the RIGHT way!
CEP: What’ve you been up to over the summer, and what fire are you bringing to the Raptors in the upcoming season?
AJ: Over the summer on top of resting, relaxing and buying a new house, I was constantly working, focusing on the knee joints for the season ahead. I’m definitely looking forward to the new season — the fans were REALLY supportive for the last one, especially with #WeTheNorth, so we’re hoping for an amazing year ahead!
CEP: Summer was anything but up here in Toronto — what do you miss about LA?
AJ: Really, most of what I miss is family. I’d love to see my grandmother more often — I’ve gotten used to the weather and transition up north, and my family sometimes visits to see a game, so I’ve got most of what I have down there here in Toronto!
CEP: You actively give back to the community — what drives the generosity?
AJ: It’s really just part of my personality — the way I was raised, my Mom, my Dad, my Grandma — they always wanted me to stay humble and never forget where I came from!
CEP: And of course, I’ve gotta ask — what’s it like having Drake as the Raptors’ Global Ambassador? What’s it like hanging with Drizzy?
AJ: It’s real cool, man — we’re around the same age and we’ve got lots in common. We shoot a little one-on-one, talk about life and other stuff — it’s fun!
CEP: Alright, well thanks for your time — it was a pleasure talking to you, and good luck with the upcoming season! We’ll be rooting for you!
AJ: Thanks! Have a good one, man!
So, amped up from the chat with Amir, I got to work attacked the clutter with gusto.
With the Swiffer Ultimate Man Clean Kit in tow, I dusted, I swept and I mopped, finding the house I remembered under all the grime that’d taken temporary control of our domain. I used Amir’s surefire strategy to show it all who’s boss… but with my spin on the situation:
- Set the mood: Get those earbuds in to attack the house to an amazing soundtrack!
- Make a realistic plan: (So I didn’t stick to this — I just keep doing because I’m stubborn.)
- Stay focused: Again, stubborn.
- Use the right tools: The Swiffer Ultimate Man Clean Kit — CHECK.
- Reward yourself: I’m pretty sure I rewarded myself with a horrible night of work as I prepared for my last day exiled in northern Toronto, but hey. Maybe I’m doing rewards wrong!
So, men of the cleaning ilk and the women who love them, here’s what I want you to do.
First, go to ShowYourClean.ca to take part in Swiffer’s Man Clean Movement and possibly win a trip to The Big Smoke to play basketball with wine of your friends at the Air Canada Centre!
Next, when you’ve joined the movement, you’ll need the tools of the trade to battle the dust bunnies, and the $78 Ultimate Swiffer Man Clean Kit is a step in the right direction! All you’ve gotta do is enter below for your chance!
(If you’re looking for more chances to win, check out Not Another Dad at NotAnotherDadBlog.com; Answer the Tullyphone at AnswerTheTullyphone.ca; and Ginger Mommy at Tales of a Ranting Ginger to put some additional entries in! Tell him I said “hi”!)
Casa de Palmer’s been a lot better since — though I still can’t make my desk out from the layer of stuff that’s weighing it down, the air’s cleaner, wood glossier, and the little spaces that rarely get touched look a little brighter — even if no one but my kid will ever see them.
So enter early, enter often, and men — let’s show the world that we’re not as sloppy as it thinks; all it takes is the right tools, right approach and right attitude to make it happen!
Stay clean, fellow fellows — stay clean!