My Bathroom Is Probably Lethal Now

I've never been a very clean person. I don't like to live in dirt and squalor, so I'll take measures to prevent this, like occasionally vacuuming and washing dishes, but other than that, I'm okay with letting things go.

But then I moved in with Evil Roommate, whose incredible powers of dirtiness have forced me to reach almost Marc Summers-ian levels of cleanliness so that our apartment can continue to maintain its socially acceptable level of dirty. Evil Roommate wasn't always like this; when we agreed to move in together, I knew him as the "clean" roommate in his college apartment. He was the one who always cleaned up after the keg parties and frowned at the dirty spots behind the staircase. And for a while after we moved in, he was great and dishes got done and random brown spots weren't showing up on our carpets and I wasn't finding horse hair in my couch upholstery and nothing smelled like horse piss. And then he started working at the ranch where his co-workers had names like "Dutch" and "Nacho," who lead fairly transient lifestyles where you don't need to worry about keeping things clean because there aren't any consequences to leaving them dirty. After all, by the time the mold bloom you caused by leaving your wet towels in the corner of the closet is in full effect, you'll have already moved on to your next friend's couch. So Evil Roommate picked up their habits and adopted this laissez-faire attitude about cleaning that it didn't need to be done because eventually, things will just take care of themselves. Kind of like some people I knew in college who decided to stop using deodorant because they said our bodies are all equipped with stink-fighting measures that will go into effect once they aren't suppressed by those Secret chemicals.

Evil Roommate was right though, in that things would take care of themselves if he waited long enough. Because eventually, I'll spend my weekend cleaning our entire kitchen and living room. That's what I did last week after odd smells started emanating from somewhere in our kitchen even after I took the three accumulated bags full of garbage out and did the dishes. It was time for some Spring Cleaning. I bought some spray cleaner with bleach, because I wasn't messing around and bleach pretty much screams "I'm not messing around," doesn't it? So I bleached the shit out of the kitchen counters and the stove and swept and mopped the floor and vacuumed the living room. I did not clean the inside of the microwave or the toaster oven because those things belong to Evil Roommate, and I'll be damned if I'm going to clean any more of his mess than I already do. And things were good, and everything was clean and fresh and new. And then I went out for a while and Evil Roommate came home and cooked something and I think some of the bleach got on the stove burners because when I got back, the entire apartment smelled like burnt. Burnt what, I couldn't say, but burnt. It was inescapable and had invaded all sections of the apartment. I asked Evil Roommate what the hell had happened when I was gone, but he hadn't noticed anything because he has a sinus infection and can't smell anything. People in Kansas were sitting around going "what is that burnt smell?" but Evil Roommate was sitting on the couch, getting horse hair and crumbs everywhere, pleased as could be that his weird tuna-noodle-olive oil-random-weed-that-he-found-growing-near-the-trail casserole had turned out okay. Fortunately, our apartment came with windows, so I opened them and the smell was evacuated soon enough.

I had some free time yesterday, so I decided to spend it cleaning my own room, which wasn't nasty like our kitchen but could use a going-over. I bleached the shit out of my bathroom (Evil Roommate and I have our own private bathrooms, which may make us sound spoiled to you but it is absolutely essential for the well-being of both my mind and body to not share a bathroom with Evil Roommate, whose personal toilet has turned from white to black and whose shower curtain has turned from green to pink). I then turned on the fan and left my bathroom to ventilate, as instructed on the bleach bottle.

It turns out that I can't do anything right. My bathroom doesn't have windows, but I thought the fan would be enough to get the bleach smell out of there. This morning, I killed approximately five million brain cells while taking a shower in bleach steam. And then I went to get a towel from my in-bathroom linen closet, my old towel having been thrown into the laundry basket, and found that everything in my linen closet was damp and smelled like mildew. How did this happen? Well, the linen closet has no ventilation, so I guess every time I took a shower, the steam made its way into the closet and just stayed there, wreaking havoc. A closer inspection of the area revealed that the black spots on the wall, which I originally thought were some weird painting scheme left over from the previous owners, had both grown in size and quantity. So now I have to air out my bathroom of the smells of too much cleanliness and too much dirtiness at the same time. And my bathroom, due to what turns out to be a crucial design flaw in the structure of our apartment, has no windows. So it's going to take a while, if it happens at all.

Until then, I'll be breathing in a combination of bleach and raging mold bloom that is probably going to kill me. And then my corpse will decompose on the bathroom floor and that will be gross and smell bad, but no one will ever clean it up.