So you’ll never guess what my lovely wife Barbara just acquired for our kitchen.
I’ll give you some hints: it’s not an appliance; it will in no way enhance the flavor of our food; it will not assist in the preparation of food, or the serving of food, or the eating of food. It doesn’t go on the wall, or the kitchen island, or in the window, or in the refrigerator.
Oh, and it sells for about $175.
Have you guessed?
Well, you’re wrong. It’s a floor cloth.
Many of you out there may be looking at those two words, “floor” and “cloth,” and thinking that they really don’t go together, kind of like “President” and “Romney.” Others may be wondering what exactly a floor cloth is, and why it would sell for $175.
If you’re like me, you may be asking, as I did when Barbara first ordered it, “Is that like a floor mat?”
Yes, yes it is. In the marketing parlance of the day, it is an artisanal floor mat, hand crafted and one-of-a-kind, and made just for us. As opposed to Domino’s artisanal pizza and Dunkin’ Donuts’ artisanal bagels, which–and I’m just guessing here–are created on a somewhat larger scale, although I suppose it’s possible that either or both may be better tasting than our floor cloth.
Barbara informs me that I am an idiot, that floor cloths have been around for centuries, that everyone knows what a floor cloth is, and that it is a true work of art.
And because Barbara is quite possibly right about the first part, I reply “But it’s a friggin’ floor mat! Art doesn’t usually have a protective layer for when people spill spaghetti sauce on it!”
Yes, it goes with our kitchen. In fact, it matches our kitchen floor so well you almost don’t even notice it. But I can’t swear to you that it’s any better at being a mat than our old mat, which I had always thought Barbara had picked up at a store like Home Goods for around $10.99, but which she now informs me she paid $75 for, which means that our one-of-a-kind floor cloth is really a great deal and that I obviously have no idea what home decor items cost.
All of which comes full circle to me being an idiot.
Don’t get me wrong; it’s not that I don’t like the floor cloth. It’s just that I have a reflexive reaction when people do things like referring to a used car as being “pre-owned,” or trying to sell me “dried plums” instead of prunes, or advertising artisanal bagels. Can’t we just call a spade a spade and not a “Manual Ground Breaking Device?”
Finally, because I know that somewhere out there a master craftsperson is hand-carving a $500 artisanal “Toilet Doctor,” let me say in advance that you can take your plunger and shove it.
See you soon.
P.S. By the way, if you’d like to get your own custom-made-just-for-you floor cloth, visit the artist’s website, http://www.floorclothsbykate.com/. Yes, they’re really floor mats, but they’re really beautiful, well-made floor mats, and, evidently, well-priced. But before you buy one, you might want to make sure your spouse is not an idiot.