Please put a Roomba vacuum under my Christmas tree. I understand this wish violates my long-standing NO APPLIANCES FOR CHRISTMAS rule. Yes, I know I’ve said, “If anyone presents me with a FryDaddy, they will wear the imprint of its box on their forehead for eternity.” I get a little carried away sometimes. And only you know so well that I haven’t asked for anything from the appliances category since I was five, when you brought me that Suzy Homemaker oven. Perhaps that’s why I don’t possess a fondness for cooking. But thank you for your kindness. You couldn’t have known back in 1965 that feminism would free us from the drudgeries of housewifery, and launch women out of the kitchen and into the working world.
But we, or at least I, still have to clean the house. And since my work hours have increased dramatically--thank you new teaching job--I need some help, specifically, with vacuuming.
You do remember Hank, don’t you? Hank, the Border Collie, who sheds like a herd of mountain goats? His hair now covers the floor in layers and clumps like rolling tumbleweeds the size of boulders. These tumblehairs, as I call them, line the baseboards and grow in number and size under our bed. How is it that the Hubster and I are not severe asthmatics?
A smart robot that vacuums every crevice and corner, and under the FURniture of my home, independently mind you, would solve ALL of my problems.
And that brings me to my dilemma here, and my reason for writing you this year. The Hubster, bless his heart, is not shall we say, “on board” with this Roomba vacuum, which, in his words, is “spending a lot of money on another gadget.”
When I presented my Christmas wish to my Hubster, I said, “These little disc-shaped vacuum cleaners are intelligent machines! They are robots with computers, memory, sensors, and room-scanning lasers. The Roomba can locate its docking station, its little mother ship, within the vast universe of our home. We are living in the age of The Jetsons! Then I showed him the twenty-percent-off coupon from Bed Bath and Beyond, to show that I am both enthusiastic and penny-wise.
However, the Hubster is not budging. I can only plead my case with you, Santa. And you and I both know it’s been years since you brought me a toy (Shhhh, except for that personal toy that was recommended by Oprah herself—let’s keep that between us).
These Roombas are actually cute in a toy kind of way, the same way that Rock‘Em Sock‘Em Robots were cute, and Furby, and, who doesn’t love R2D2?
I have to tell you, Santa, I started looking at Roomba a dozen or so years ago when the early models were $1000 bucks or more, and I said, “How wasteful when children are starving.” I think I said this to the Hubster, and added something about people being too lazy to vacuum, as I always seem to have a way of digging my own grave.
But now, Santa, after almost five years of being a stay-at-home-writer, I’m working at a college. Twenty-five eager-to-learn students depend on me to show up for class ready to lead and inspire, which requires twenty-five hours of preparation for two classes each week.
I am too tired to vacuum!
So, Santa, I am counting on you to fulfill my Christmas wish this year. Please grant me my wish for this little round vacuuming marvel, which is needed and useful, and inspires a little childlike wonder in its ingenuity.
And don’t worry, Santa, I will set out the sticky pet hair remover brush on the kitchen table by your cookies and milk, just like I did last year.