How to clean a popcorn ceiling

If you are anything like me, Dear Reader(s), you enjoy keeping a clean home. Also: drinking wine straight from the bottle.*

Cleanliness is next to godliness, they say, and if that is truly the case Jesus H. Christ Hisself has spent some time in my kitchen. There’s a reason I keep the wine around.

But even the nit-pickiest of housekeepers has an Achilles’ heel: the one area, nook or cranny they just can’t clean to their liking. Some might use creative means to amend the problem: moving an area rug over a floor stain, for instance. Or replacing those bright light bulbs with some of lower wattage. If you can’t see it, it ain’t dirty – am I right?

The bane of my existence, however, happens to be my apartment’s ceiling.

Specifically, the dreaded Popcorn Ceiling:

side note: none of the angles pictured here are actually 90 degrees. My entire apartment is like some sort of avant-garde architectural experiment.

Seriously, whoever decided this was a Good Idea should be drug out into the street and shot.**

It’s like some jackass was all “Oh, man, this space is much too clean! You know what it needs? Some fucking debris stuck to the ceiling!”

So when it comes to this clusterfuck of interior design, what is one to do? Simple! Just follow these easy steps and your home will soon be free of allergen-breeding stalactites!

1. Determine the area of ceiling you wish to clean.
Don’t know where to start? Try looking above you. Which area of the room appears to be infested with hordes of spiders? Go there.

2. Collect your supplies.
I suggest dust rags and “canned air,” which is one of those First World inventions of which I’d deny existence if I was ever cornered by, say, a starving Kenyan. “What? No! My country cannot possibly be so stupid and wasteful as to sell cans of air!”

3. Plan your approach.
A sturdy chair or stepladder will do. Unless you are personally eight feet tall, you will need assistance to get up close and personal with the ceiling. Also suggested: a spotter.

4. Supplies in hand, you will begin your attack.
First, spray some canned air onto the surface in question. Do not be alarmed when pieces of the ceiling seem to disintegrate and fall to the floor, onto the kitchen table, into the open mouths of your young children, etc;. This is part of the Cleaning Process.

5.  Repeat the process of spraying air and batting fruitlessly at the falling flotsam and jetsam.
Nearly lose your balance on the chair.
Call for your spotter.
She is probably in the kitchen, with the wine.

6. You will soon become irritated at your lack of progress.
This is natural; screaming obscenities, stomping on the floor and opening up another bottle of wine are all expected responses.

7. Merlot-fortified, begin your assault again in earnest.
Except – what the fuck? Is that a mosquito bite? On my leg? How did it — ? Oh God, it itches. What the–?

8. Jesus! There’s another one! What the hell? Are they, like, living in my ceiling? Oh sweet chocolate Christ. There’s one on my face. THERE IS A FUCKING MOSQUITO BITE ON MY FACE. Oh, Lord, are they attracted to the wine?

Be careful; your spotter is on a Taco Bell run.

11. Call your landlord, because this is a lost cause. Break your lease and move, and for God’s sakes MAKE SURE YOUR NEW PLACE DOESN’T HAVE A POPCORN CEILING.

12. Even if it has a dishwasher. I’m dead serious.

*Not simultaneously per se, but I’m always up for a challenge.
**Juanita-ism right there. Another favorite? “People are hung by their toenails for less than that.” This usually refers to someone taking away her morning coffee.

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