My mom used to say that – “There’s no such thing as bored.”
And I used to think my mom was full of shit.
Clearly she didn’t get the conundrum of being a inquisitive, curious (in every sense of the word) child who was without anything new to process. Obviously the world owed me some new material, stat.
Today I’ve concluded, quite decisively, that my mom was onto something.
I have concluded this on the basis of vacuum cleaners.
To explain: I ran into this story about a kid, 12, who loves vacuums. And not the galactic blackhole kind – the dirt sucking kind.
To be clear – he LOVES them.
It’s at the point where he can isolate which of his vacuums is running just by its individual sound – he can even tell you the year one was manufactured just by listening to it.
So I thought this is all goofy and quirky and maybe even unique but I wasn’t too enthralled with it all. Then I found out there’s another kid like him. And another kid.
Vacuum aficionados walk among us. And I think they’re on to something.
Obviously these kids could be mocked for their offence against normalcy (and they probably are) – or they could be celebrated for their tacit vacugeek promise of abstinence for decades to come – but that’s not where I’m at with all of this.
I’m thinking that these guys are heroes.
They have chosen to be obsessed with the banal. Endlessly mystified and beguiled by a thing that most of us never think twice (or even once) about (and if we do it’s to hate it). This whole vacum thing is nothing short of magic transmutation: dedication and obsession turn the useless and filthy into the sublime.
Look, I’m not saying that I’m gonna go out and buy a vintage Hoover tomorrow but there is something at the heart of all this that might prove that my mom was right after all.
Here are the vids: