Thursday, January 26, 2012

The Nastiest Thing I've EVER Done

I'm off work today.

Usually, I've planned out my day with non-office related work/play, in order to be productive and useful.

The sloth, I am usually not.

This morning I woke up and realized, I haven't planned out a single thing to do.  No errands. No chores. Not even something fun or entertaining, like catching up on TV shows.

It did occur to me that the house was in need of some TLC.  Not your normal straightening the living room, sweeping the floors or doing a last minute load of dishes, but things like, cleaning the microwave, fridge and even the dishwasher.

Yep.  Major stuff.

I started with the microwave. Easy. Finished in a couple of minutes. Felt very accomplished.

Moved the the dishwasher.  This guy needed something major loving.  He's actually a pretty terrible dishwasher.  It's rare that all of the dishes come out clean.  Mostly, the glasses end up with a grainy residue after being washed. Or there is nasty water floating in the bottoms of the upside down cups or bowls.  Basically, it's a pointless appliance.

So, I did some reading up (via Pinterest) and decided it was worth a shot to remove and clean the filter and also clean out the holes in the spray arm, just in case anything has gotten trapped.

First, it was a very difficult task trying to remove the filter.  I had to take out screws, remove other parts of the spray arm/filter/doo-dads, all while hovering above a pool of stagnant dishwasher water.  Yuck.

Finally I removed the filter.  Success.

I forgot to mention that I had NO rubber gloves...or any type of gloves on while doing this.  Bare handed.  I was very desperate.

I turned the filter over to check and see if there was any buildup and almost vomited on the spot.

Friends and neighbors, imagine with me, if you will, turning over a harmless filter (or bathtub drainer, thermostat cover, sink stopper..whatever you can relate to) to find a gigantic, water-logged turd seeping into every crevice of the contraption.  Odorous, gooey, gunky, hairy, and wet.

Obviously, not my actual dishwasher build up, but it definitely looked like this.
[de-fine] Dishwasher Poo:
a collection of food particles, gunky dishwasher detergent, brown, black and red molds, all rolled up into one conglomeration of disgusting-ness.

Now, okay.  I understand that cleaning a toilet is a pretty dirty job. If you clean it regularly, once a week of every two, it makes for a pretty effortless job.  Spray some cleaner, swish the toilet wand around a couple of times and voila.  Clean commode.

However, there is the chance that you might run into a red ring in your toilet or even the occasional skid marks.  Or you might lift up the seat to find a nice collection of pee droplets, possibly coupled with the sporadic appearance of stray poo bits.  Sometimes there is blood.

Yes, that is gross.  There is no denying it.

**DO NOT google "dirty toilets".  It's actually very intensely disgusting.**

But most people clean their toilets on a regular basis.  Crisis avoided.

How many people do you know that regularly clean out their dishwasher filters?????  Imagine the build-up.

Personally I don't know anyone.  Heck, why would you need to clean out something that has soap and water running through it daily?  Self-cleaning, right?

So I scrubbed...gloveless, mind you.  Luckily I had a toothbrush reserved for household cleaning purposes and a box of toothpicks.  I armed myself with the ultimate science project ingredients...baking soda and vinegar....and stood back while the volcano erupted.

Fortunately, it just foamed and sizzled, no real explosion.  I would have died on the spot had I been consequently covered with Dishwasher poo.

After the One-Two Punch, I knocked it out with an intense application of Comet and some toothbrush scrubbing and toothpick dislodging.

The nastiest thing I've ever done.  So far.

Just in case you're wondering the last step of the dishwasher cleaning process is to run an empty dishwasher with vinegar in the detergent cup and other smaller cup.

Sorry that I've been MIA and that this nasty post was my re-introduction into blog world.

I would love to hear your disgusting household cleaning stories.  For some reason, as gross and gag-worthy as cleaning the filter was, it was very satisfying too.  In a very weird and partially mentally unstable way.  Am I alone in that?

Keep Posted,

the rave


  1. Oh haven't cleaned up anything until you get to clean up from where your sewer line has backed up into your bathtub. This happened to me in Florida. I'd clean a while, then take a break to go throw up in the other bathroom. It was easily the most disgusting cleaning job I have EVER had to do. But your dishwasher sounds as though it was a very close second.
    A. Holly

    1. Aunt Holly - you're right. I would definitely say that your gross and disgusting sewer issue takes the cake. I don't even think my dishwasher incident comes close. I'm cringing at the thought of what you must have dealt with...Ew.

  2. I'm dry heaving right now. You are a brave, brave girl!! And ps: I have a few projects for you next time you're in Ringgold! ;)

    1. Becca - You were one of the first people I thought of when I admitted to feeling really satisfied after doing something so disgusting. Projects?! I would love to know what you have in mind!

  3. Love this post. All the great/disgusting details of cleaning that never get mentioned. So, I really want to clean my dishwasher now. I have been doing a little interior dishwasher cleaning ever since moving to humid here that I find the weirdest things get yucky. I didn't even know about a filter in the dishwasher. I'm going to investigate. Exciting times!

  4. Jana - you must love the grotesque discoveries that go along with deep cleaning to want to go investigate your dishwasher right now. So gross! I bet you do find some interesting stuff in all crevices because of the humidity....I hope you have gloves!

  5. Rave, how I love your posts! And how much I identify with the satisfaction you feel when cleaning something truly nasty, except for this one time... This one particular experience made me feel sick, rather than satisfactory. It's probably similar to your Aunt Holly's experience... When I was in Ecuador we had a lot of stomach/digestive problems because of various things we ate, and of course, being a volunteer with a small non-profit, plumbing was not the highest priority in our house. So naturally our toilet didn't work very well. Then one day we weren't feeling too hot after something we ate, and our toilet got the worst of it (no need for details here). Apparently our toilet did not like us after this and decided to retaliate... by spitting it all up over our bathroom floor. Luckily (if any of this could be considered lucky), my fellow volunteer was there with me to clean up the mess. I barely got through without vomiting. Oh, and did I mention we didn't have gloves either? (Much high strength bacteria killing product has cleaned my hands since, I promise!)

    On that note, I love you! Can't wait to see you in a few weeks.