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Diatribe: Please Don’t Vaccuum Around Our Feet.


Back in the 1970s we had shag carpeting in our “rec room”.  It was a long shag and it was green.  After it was vacuumed, we would “rake” it.  We had a special, plastic rake that resembled the tool one might use when working in the yard and, when company was expected, we would use the rake to make the strands of fiber in the rug stand on end.  We would work really hard to make sure the resulting pattern was consistent and appealing.  It became a sport for my mother and I.  Either that, or she used it as an excuse to get me out of her hair when she was preparing for visitors.

Although we were rarely allowed in the room, the “parlor” was vacuumed regularly and the triangles that resulted were to be left intact and not marred by our footprints.  Should the telephone ring while someone was vacuuming, the machine was to be turned off immediately because it was so loud.

To this day, I get annoyed when someone vacuums around me.  If I’m in a retail store in a busy mall and a clerk starts vacuuming near me, I’ll usually leave.  To my way of thinking, that’s something that should be done after hours when no customers are in the store.  Or, unless there’s an accident of some kind, discreetly when no one is around.

Last week I stayed a night in an upscale hotel.  While there, I spent quite a bit of time in the hotel’s lobby, visiting and relaxing with colleagues, and I counted no less than six different people who vacuumed right around us as if we weren’t even there.  Frankly, I didn’t appreciate spending all that money to stay in a place where I couldn’t have a conversation because I couldn’t hear anything.  The floor wasn’t even dirty.  I don’t understand why they did this.

I never bothered to complain (language barrier) but I wish that I had.  I wasn’t the only guest that found the practice to be obnoxious, so maybe someone else spoke up.  I figured I’d ignore it during my short stay.  I managed but it was difficult.

Are you annoyed by vacuums in department stores, hotels, etc?

Copyright © 2012

From → Diatribes

  1. mary i permalink

    Yes I am….


  2. Roly permalink

    They get in the way


  3. I don’t think the people who vacuum are to blame. They’re just underpaid workers doing what managers tell them to do. I’d complain to the management.


    • I agree, of course, but I’ve encountered my share of folks that appear to be bending the rules so that they can leave at exactly closing time. Managers might not know that they’re doing it unless someone speaks up.


  4. Will J permalink

    Vacuum? What is this strange thing of which you speak? 😉


  5. We stayed in a very nice hotel recently where the maid asked my permission to vacuum while I was on the phone and I said sure and she then turned on the loudest vacuum cleaner in the world. It was akin to a nuclear explosion. I’m deaf now.


  6. I dislike people vacuuming around me, but I HATE when a restaurant worker sweeps around me when I’m trying to eat. Not only is it unsanitary, it’s rude. A few weeks ago when our eldest daughter was visiting we went out to a chain restaurant for dinner & the servers all congregated in our section to sweep, rearrange tables, etc. while we were still eating our meal. It wasn’t like they were closing, more people came in & were seated in our section after the “clean-up”


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