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Hair today

Hunter considers his nemesis

Spent a good two hours this weekend doing battle against the fluff. When we first got the cats, we had, for various reasons, two hoovers: an Oreck (the hot rod of hoovers: huge engine, design straight from the 1950s, sounds like the end of the world, won’t go around corners) and our old Electrolux (nondescript modern design). Both seemed to work OK – we’d push them around from time to time, generating a lot of noise and turning the carpets a bit whiter, then feel better about not having hoovered for three weeks previously. After taking in Hunter and Ralph, though, we began to notice small grey tumbleweeds of fluff drifting around the edges of the room. Yuck. After much prevarication, we spent the best part of £200 on this Dyson and a turbine head (makes a racket, spins around, digs hair from carpets).

And my, does it pick up fluff. Dirty grey heaps of it.

The first time we used it, the Dyson’s plastic dust box thingy soon filled up with big grey, swirling clouds of hair. This was a bit disgusting (after all, we’d been living in this stuff for who knows how long), but also reassuring – at least our expensive purchase was working, and we could get rid of the stuff. Sadly, though, that turned out to be only the first skirmish in an ongoing war. We now have to hoover almost religiously every week (I know that some people would do this anyway, but I’m lazy, so it’s a shock to the system) and it still picks up great big billious clouds of what looks like largely Hunter fluff – as far as I can tell he sheds his own volume in hair roughly every fortnight.

So, a recommendation or two: if you have a cat, buy a Dyson. I know that they’re a horrible symbol of yuppiedom, the adverts are annoying, and the prices are shocking, but they are your last hope when it comes to the removal of cat fluff. Similarly, if you already own a Dyson, buy a cat. You will have justified your purchase of that £200 over-engineered feather duster, and there’s nothing so good after a bout of cleaning as sitting down on the sofa and watching the cats saunter over to you, preparing to redistribute their own excess hair in order to keep you busy next weekend. Because, after all, they like to keep you entertained.

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