Campus / News / April 8, 2010

Cleaning rituals allow students to ring in the spring

In the darkness and despair of winter term, seasonal depression, hibernation and slightly vampiric appearances due to lack of sunlight were not uncommon. Along with these tendencies, Knox students frequently experienced an accumulation of mess.

“I cleaned out my fridge for the first time in three months,” said junior Tara Orech in reference to the climax that was the end of winter term. After finals, she said, “I had a train at 7 a.m. and I came back, turned in my last paper, and wanted to go out and see people. But I knew my fridge had not been cleaned out for three months. I sat there and cleaned out the fridge from 10 p.m. to 11 p.m. When I was done I was so tired I could barely move.”

Although the effort of removing spoiled food from her life required some of the last of her strength, in the end, Orech refused to regret the experience.

“Doing something manual that required no brainpower was good after everything was said and done,” said Orech.

Orech was not the only one seeking a new and unspoiled beginning to spring term.

“I decided to clean because it’s a fresh start to the term so I wanted a fresh clean room,” said freshman Lizzy Warner.

In an effort to leave cold winter days behind them, some Knox students took the out of sight, out of mind approach.

“I put all my coats in big boxes and shoved them under the bed,” said sophomore Aparna Kumar. “The big puffy coats you don’t need anymore.”

Kumar’s spring cleaning efforts benefited from spring break itself.

“You can see the floor because things are still in the suitcase,” said Kumar.

Cleaning messy rooms in anticipation of spring term has been witnessed all over campus.

“My roommate transferred, so I came back and my room looked like a tornado had gone through,” said sophomore Greg Noth. “I had to clean and vacuum and rearrange.”

Although winter can often suck away the energy needed to maintain a spotless room, some students felt a little bit of mess in their lives was not entirely detrimental.

“There’s a good messy and then there’s too messy,” said Kumar.

Some students took advantage of the warmer weather of spring break to do chores that winter had prevented them from accomplishing.

“I have a racing lawnmower and I decided to do an engine upgrade so I went to the mower shop and I got a larger engine and I put it in. It’s always too cold to do that during the winter,” said junior Jon Pierce-Ruhland.

Organizations on campus are also looking ahead to warmer days.

“We’re cleaning out the Lodge [Delta house] to make room for summer storage,” said sophomore Clara Volker, house manager for Delta Delta Delta. “We have a lot of stuff to get rid of to make room for new stuff.”

Other Knox students are using spring term as a chance to carry out new goals.

“I plan on cooking more spring term, maybe having a picnic,” said sophomore Katrina Firor. “This term I’m more willing to go out and buy food because the weather is nice and I can walk places. I bought some pots and pans for fifteen dollars at Dollar General…I’ve been scrounging around and borrowing plates from friends and stuff.”

Overall, Knox students, whether cleaning the winter clutter from their life or emboldened by the sunshine enough that they wish to start new adventures, will be turning over a new leaf this spring.

Katy Sutcliffe

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