One of the more weird gifts I’ve received.

Tidying up the living room, yet again, I come across an item that was not part of the scene on December 24th, 2017. It’s a bright orange dusting device. My devoted husband and loving child purchased it as a Christmas gift for me a couple days before Christmas. They’d gone to Home Depot — I knew about this — to buy stuff for a project they are working on, and apparently what happened was that as they strolled through the store my daughter espied the duster and said, “Ooooo, Mama would love that!”  So they bought it.

It is bright orange. It looks like something the police would use at a crime scene at night. Dusting for fingerprints. Who knows. It is — I hear Cosmo in “Moonstruck” as I write this — it is very bright.

It is an effective duster, I’ll say cheerfully; I used it to dust the hi-fi and the piano and it did a good job. More amusing to me is that fact that it has become one of my daughter’s favorite toys. For reasons I don’t fully understand, she thinks it is great fun to dress up in specific attire and then walk around the house dusting. The ensemble that she has declared her work clothes includes: black penny loafers; a grey straw porkpie hat of mine; black skinny pants; and a black, elaborately embroidered kimono that was a gift from a world-traveling friend of ours.

To my astonishment, this outfit actually looks totally awesome on the kid and I’d let her wear it in public, no problem. Hell, I’d wear it in public, if the kimono would fit me.

Normally things like dusting supplies are kept in a closet or under the kitchen sink, places where one won’t see them on a day to day basis. I’ve decided, however, that it’s totally okay if the extremely bright duster stays in the living room. If it means that my daughter gets to play and do housecleaning at the same time, thus keeping out of my hair and keeping our house a little cleaner, it’s fine with me. I keep it stowed away behind the couch or tucked discreetly underneath one of the side tables. It doesn’t seem to bother anyone.

Maybe there’s money in dusters. Someone should make a line of dusters that are simultaneously effective, washable, and attractive to look at. Instead of having cut flowers in vases, people could have bouquets of dusters scattered attractively around the house.

Or maybe this already exists.
The problem, of course, is that anything like this is just another tchotchke to dust. And how would you keep it clean?

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