Wednesday, April 25, 2012

V - Vacuum War

Most of you already know how I feel about house cleaning. I do it because if I don’t, nobody else will.  Doesn’t mean I enjoy it. Although there is something to be said about opening all the windows and deep-cleaning the house on a bright sunny day when everything smells like spring. Unfortunately, bright sunny days are few and far between in the Parisian suburbs.

If I’m going to clean, it’s going to be on my terms.  Alas, this has lead to a vacuum war between myself and my French husband.

You’ll notice, if you type ‘vacuum’ into google images- about 95 percent of the pictures shown are like the above- an all-in-one model, with the sack and sucking mechanism included along the handle.  It’s easy to use- sure, maybe a little bottom-heavy, but also easy to store in a broom closet so you don’t have to look at the damn thing all day long. Perfect for the doll-houses with minimum storage space that pass for apartments in these parts.

If you type ‘aspirateur’ (French word for vacuum) into google images- you’ll find 95 percent resemble big hulking jet packs with a tube that leads to the long pipe with a handle and vacuum head.  Anything less is gawked at by my French counterparts as ‘inadequate’.

I hate these kinds of vacuums. 

Hate them, hate them, hate them. 

The heavy reverse-jetpack on wheels needs to be tugged along behind you as you desperately try to avoid the tubing (which often gets caught between my legs) and try not to trip over the mile-long wire that trails behind the whole as you vacuum away. And lifting the jetpack is damn near impossible. I don’t understand why there’s even a handle.  The thing weighs as much as I do. Maybe I’m just a wimp- but I find these machines more trouble than they’re worth.  And don’t even get me started on trying to find a storage space willing to accommodate the monstrosity.

That’s why I’ve stuck by my Red Dirt Devil all-in-one for the last few years- that was, until my husband and mother in law (and a store clerk) ganged up on me and made me buy a ‘real’ vacuum by their standards.

Needless to say, I remain loyal to Little Red, even if he might not have the same sucking capacity.  The ‘Heffalump’ my husband made me buy remains up against a wall in our hallway (just like I said it would because there’s no damn place to put it!)

I hate to admit it, but the Heffalump does work better. But that’s beside the point - I never needed a vacuum that could suck the paint off the walls.

Sometimes...you just have to fight for what you believe in.

I think this is my lamest post to date but the question must be asked- Do you have a preference in the war of the vacuums?

24 comments:

Old Kitty said...

Little Henry!! Too adorable! A bit feeble and useless for kitty hairs but completely adorable!!! Yay! Take care
x

TC Avey said...

Funny post- I enjoyed it because it brings to mind my current vacuum war with my toddler. He LOVES the vacuum but he makes it really difficult to actually use the vacuum.

Oh well, life's too short to worry about this battle.

Talli Roland said...

OH MY GOD! I can so relate. I hate the Hoovers here in the UK - they look like your French ones. Heavy, hard to manoeuvre, and absolutely NOWHERE to store the bloody things!

Charcoal Renderings said...

Jetpacks are for flying around like a superhero.

Not cleaning your carpets.

End of story.

Matthew MacNish said...

We've owned the original yellow Dyson for nearly 15 years, and have never had to buy a vacuum since. We don't even have to buy vacuum bags. Not that I use the thing myself, but it seems to work for Kelly and the kids.

Teresa Stenson said...

I have an upright Dyson and I like it (as much as I can allow myself to like a hoover).

BUT. Once, I got a bit 'hoover happy' with it. Thought I'd hoover my laptop. This happened:

http://teresa-stenson.blogspot.co.uk/2010/03/this-week-i.html

(it's a copy and paste affair cos I'm not good with html)

Tonja said...

I love my Dyson. It's my precious. It's really light-weight, works great, and really doesn't lose suction. Pricey, but worth it.

Anne Gallagher said...

I have a Little Red and love it. It's lightweight and I can move it around and store it anywhere. I also have a bagless my mother gave me. It sucks the carpet like nothing else in the world, but it's so heavy I can't get it upstairs. My cousin used to have a Heffalump that I was in love with, it was very lightweight and came with a 1000 attachments but they don't make them anymore.

And no, this is not a lame post. Vacuuming is a very important topic. One that I am going to discuss today with the man who lives in my house.

LD Masterson said...

I vacuum. The dog sheds. Repeat.

Makes no difference what kind of machine I use.

And why isn't that word spelled vacume?

Slamdunk said...

I think this is a topic that we can all relate to.

Like Matthew, we shelled out and got a bag-less Dyson a few years ago. It really makes a difference in removing all the pet hair around here.

farawayeyes said...

Itty bitty or big jet pack, I hate to vacuum. In the tropics my floors are all tile.

Connie Keller said...

I totally agree. I've vacuumed with a jet pack, and they are heinous. Clearly, they've been designed for Olympic weightlifters with no legs. Either that or they were designed by engineers with a perverse sense of humor.

Tracy Makara said...

I'm definitely on your side on this one! The jet pack type vacuums may suck well but honestly they just suck. So bulky and a real pain in the butt to use. As you said...impossible to store too and who wants a vacuum cleaner as a decoration? Give me the wimpy kind any day please. :)

Tracy Jo said...

Ugh. I hate vacuums in general but I am with you...Little Red all the way!

Eric said...

Just for the record, I'm with you on this. Though I only do half the vacuuming, I would much rather do it with a model like you prefer. We do have the jetpack on wheels thing too, and though it works fine, I hate it. Of course, I'm fairly laid back when it comes to cleaning so I don't mind when a vacuum only cleans so much. The world is dusty, so what.

DL Hammons said...

First of all, if your the one doing the cleaning then you get to choose your tools! Pure and simple! Secondly, the wife and I had one of those pull-along jobs once, and it was a PAIN IN THE ASS. Yes...it could suck...and it DID!! :)

Johanna Garth said...

My preference for vacuums is I not be the one using them!

Marta Szemik said...

I'm lucky enough that my husband is a clean-a-holic. I think I've touched our vacuum a handful of times since we've been married, but my hubby would sleep with the thing if he could. We have central vacuuming for the house, so all he has to do is drag a loooong hose around:)

Marsha Sigman said...

I bought a Kirby off a door to door salesman like...centuries ago.

It still works great and has a seperate bucket of attachments along with a VHS tape of how to use them. I have no idea where that is.

But I've had my eye on those new Dyson sleek little models. No way would I ever buy that jetpack. Unless it actually did the vacuuming for me. Looks like something they used on the space shuttle.

~Sia McKye~ said...

I had a Kirby for years. Loved it. But it's so damn heavy. Hubs loves Hoover and I hate them.

I recently bought a Shark, one that never loses suction power. Not as expensive as a Dysan and I love it. Versatile and excellent on cleaning without breaking my back, lol!

Sia McKye OVER COFFEE

Amy Saia said...

For years I have lugged around a canister vacuum, that, while efficient, is a big pain in the a$$. It falls over, rips up area rugs, and has too many pieces that don't wan tot stay on. I spend more time trying to keep it in one piece, then actually vacuuming. If it ever dies, I'm getting a Dyson (no pun intended).

Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

We have both - and the upright gets far more use.

Nancy Thompson said...

I prefer an upright for most places, but the canister type is best on stairs. I just threw my crappy Dirt Devil out and bought a Eureka. Bagless is the way to go, especially if you have pets. Can't believe I'm commenting about vacuums!

Botanist said...

Hey! You missed out the built-in vacuum that seems to be the norm in (at least this part of) the North American continent.

With this system there's nothing heavy to log around, but you do have to avoid tangling your feet in the hose trailing through the house from the plug in the wall.

And putting it away is like wrestling an anaconda. So the hose remains a death trap at the top of the stairs until someone feels up to a good workout.

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