The Vacuum Cleaner Conspiracy

By Juli

I recently bought a wireless vacuum — the kind that you plug into the wall and charge up, and then can only use for 14 minutes, but ideally they work so well that you can ‘cuum your whole house in 14 minutes. It’s a popular brand, and it was a good deal, and I needed a vacuum, so I totally impulse bought it from Costco one day. In my defence, though: asthma. What if my kids get asthma if I DON’T buy the vacuum? But I did, so problem solved, SPENCE.

And I love the thing for many reasons. One of which is that it looks like a ray gun, which is just fun. Another reason is that it has a little see-through plastic canister (no more vacuum bags – hooray!), that gathers the dust and dirt and crumbs all in one convenient, transparent location where I can look at it and be equal parts proud of myself that I am pulling this disgusting filth out of our floor, and grossed out with myself that I am shedding this disgustingness onto said floor. Every time I look at it I am in awe — and in “eeeew,” because with only four people living in our house it still seems like every time I vacuum (which is not often enough, granted) we probably would have enough dust to be able to make a new, tiny dust-person out of all the dead skin cells we have emitted. I call him “Dusty.” And into the garbage he goes, thanks to my easy-emptying dirt canister!

Another thing I love about the vacuum is that it really DOES do my whole house in 14 minutes. Well, all the major parts of it. And even when I don’t get the whole house done in 14 minutes, it’s like, “Oops! Oh well! Guess I have no choice but to charge it for a few hours! Ha ha ha! Nothing to do but read this magazine until then!”

So you might believe that this vacuum is just the best thing since the invention of eating doughnuts in the bath. This would be the case, except for one thing, a thing that has stumped my powerful, ray-gun-like vacuum since the very beginning: the Cheerio.

It’s no secret that small children + Cheerios = Cheerios all over the floor, which is why I have a theory that rats and/or pet dogs must have invented Cheerios. A Cheerio can roll it’s way under and into the darnedest of places: it can and it will. Try this experiment if you don’t believe me: give your child a bowl of Cheerios, turn and count to three, turn back around and note that, without fail, there is at least one Cheerio on the floor, if not all of them. Thus a parent who chooses to buy Cheerios would benefit greatly from having a ‘cuum that ‘cuums Cheerios, wouldn’t you say? Yes.


Here’s a picture of me using a vacuum in the fifties. Back in the day, vacuums didn’t do that great a job on dust and allergens, but by gosh, they picked up Cheerios!

Thus my dilemma. For all of it’s great qualities, when you push the power head of my vacuum against a Cheerio, the “action” (I’m making up that that’s the right word) is so low to the ground, you know, for picking up dust and allergens and stuff, that the stupid thing just pushes the Cheerio along on the ground. In order to get the Cheerio to go up it, I have to lift it on top of the cheerio, and kind of crush it a bit. And that is too much work for me when I’m already working super hard vacuuming for 14 minutes.

I can’t help but wonder: “Who makes a vacuum that doesn’t pick up Cheerios!?” because, really, who in their right mind would do such a thing? Maybe another conspiracy by the rats and/or pet dogs? Could be. Could be.

I have half a mind to take it back, which is a bit silly, because it’s definitely a great vacuum, and picks up everything I can’t see, which is important, surely, for the health of my family. And I have created and thrown away a lot of Dustys, which I was not doing so well with my OLD vacuum. But I want it to pick up what I CAN see, and that means Cheerios, because those dang things get everywhere, and I refuse to sweep AND vacuum the same location out of principle. That principle being: I’m tired.

So, therein lies my conundrum. And next thing you know, after selling these vacuums to all of us conflicted parents, they’ll be coming out with a vacuum that sucks up only Cheerios. Because that is how they get you. 

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