Friday, March 2, 2012

I know that smell!

Before I carry on here too far,  I’ll just mention a couple words that popped into my head earlier today.

Stachybotrys atra.

Oh how I know thee well.   And today I was reacquainted. Dag nab it!

It started out to be the usual Friday,  with conversations with myself about what bed coverings I should use,  that kind of thing.  Of course,  all the while making sure I was using all the correct jargon like,  “Pillow Sham”, as opposed to just“Pillow Case”.   Needless to say,  there are a lot of pieces,  so talking to myself is entirely necessary.   Helps to keep everything straight. 

So after I got that little chore out of the way,  I had this notion that I’d meander down to the basement and take a gander at the bikes.  Well,  it just so happens that the basement (you could possibly refer to it as a “cellar”,  and not be too far off)  is just the perfect breading ground for mould.  *Groan*

It would have never occurred to me to take the saddle bags off the Gazelle’s and bring them up here where it’s warm and dry,  since I figured it was too danged cold down there to matter.   Silly fool.



Um ya,  that white stuff?  That’s mould.  Any mycologist worth his or her salt will tell you that “Stachybotrys atra”  is actually black,  and not white or even whitish,  but that didn’t matter to me,  since I really only know the name of that one kind,  and that was due to some rather unfortunate experiences that my previous employer had encountered with these things called “portables”  or “portable class rooms”?   I’m sure you know what I’m talking about, and even if you don’t,  you can simply trust me when I say that these things were the worst abomination for students,  teachers and caretaking staff.   On a positive note,  because of the issues with mould,  and this was many years ago, many school boards have had to invest gobs of dough into making these moveable boxes more accommodating for human occupation.  This involved ripping out all carpets,  installing tile floors,  and putting in heating/ventilation/air conditioning units in order to keep the mould at bay.   What a concept!  Making it comfortable would also make it healthy.   Wow.   I could get into all the politics involved that made it necessary to actually get to the point of it being a crisis, but I feel myself already getting off on a bit of a rant here as it is.   It’s a slippery slope.


So,  I may be somewhat “old school”  when it comes to certain cleaning problems,  but my second thought was all about getting my hands on some bleach.  Any sales person in a cleaning company (who wants to sell you their products) will argue that bleach only takes out the colour,  but to my way of thinking,  it’s going to kill off anything that’s left behind,  even it we’re only giving the mould a “dye job”. 



I had already been to the store this morning,  and I didn’t really want to go back.   It’s Friday afternoon,  and this is typical.  I think I was about eighth in line there.  



But no matter,  I just wanted to make sure I got the right stuff,  since I’ve never actually seen straight bleach here.   So I decided to ask one of the ladies who works there.  Of course,  her first language is Croatian,  and my first language in English,  so that was fun.  Actually,  I think my German is better than hers,  but don’t let on.

So that’s where this stuff comes in.


She seemed pretty confident that it would work,  and as soon as I put on my gloves and hit the trigger,  I knew exactly what I was smelling.   Oh ya baby!  This sh*t is the real deal!  


Of course I’ll have to wait until tomorrow when these things are completely dry to determine if I got it all,  but so far it’s looking good.   My preference would be to spray the stuff on,  give it a rub and then hose it off,  but I don’t have a hose.   Well,  not in this country anyway.  I got plenty of hose,  just not here.


The only other slight difficulty since tackling this cleaning job, has been being able to sit down.   Driving this laptop typically means having to sit down,  and I’m having some issues.

See,  just as I took my first whiff of bleach,  I had this flashback to doing a little number on my blue jeans over the years as a result of similar activities.  

I had on a pair of jeans that Travelling Companion had given me for Christmas two years ago,  and it so happened that we had to go back to the place where we bought them to do a little exchange.  When I saw what she paid for them,  I just about pooped a little.   I’m a little whoozy just now thinking about it.  I really like them,  since they’re kinda stretchy.  I guess that’s what made them so expensive?  Sooooo… I really,  really didn’t want to get any bleach on them.  That means that the jeans that I’m presently wearing are of a certain “cut?” shall we say?   such that standing up is preferable.   That is all I’m willing to say on the subject.


No need to go shopping for a muumuu just yet, but what does it mean if it’s part of my vocabulary?   That’s kinda scary.


So just remember,  try to push back from the table after the first helping.


Thanks for stopping by.





  1. I am impressed, twice to the shop and care of the jeans plus you did a great job!!

  2. So proud of you to go grab some bleach. Hope you didn't get any of it on your clothes. The bags look great! ~wheresweaver


Well, I've been getting too many spam comments showing up. Just a drag, so we'll go another route and hope that helps. So, we won't be hearing anything more from Mr. Nony Moose.
I guess I'll just have to do without that Gucci purse.