The Vacuum Scarf Down

Vacuums suck everything up. They just suck up all the dirt and everything you point in their path. They’re kind of cool like that.

There are a few nuances to vacuuming I’d like to share with the rest of . . . however few people read this blog. So, if you’ll bear with me:

What Not To Wear – Vacuum Edition

There is a long list of non vacuum-friendly clothes, some of which include untied shoelaces, very long hair that isn’t wrapped in a ponytail or bun, and we might as well add wedding dresses or ball gowns while we’re at it.

Vacuum Shoelaces

Vacuum Policy

But I’d just like to highlight one particular item that everyone should remember to stay away from: scarves.

Scarves are absolutely inappropriate to wear while cleaning. Too cold in the house? Too bad! No scarf for you! Put a coat on, you hussy.

It’s because I speak from experience that I can share this with you. Trust me, wisdom obtained through experience is the best teacher . . . a better teacher than even Mr. Feeny himself. Shocking, I know.

Let’s not bother wondering why someone would even be wearing a scarf to clean in the first place. It’s probably not important. I mean, what silly person gets dressed to tidy up the ol’ homestead? Nobody that I know . . .

Anyway, I’m sure everyone knows what kind of obstructions not to put in the way of a vacuum. But I’m also sure we can all use a reminder now and then. Am I right?

So, I was vacuuming my dorm room on the last day of college before check out and a three month summer hiatus. Rooms have to be cleaned and vacuumed–not necessarily spotless, but clean enough most definitely.

With everything packed away, I began to vacuum. Having vacuumed countless times before, I didn’t even think twice about safety since its record has been pretty harmless. With one flick of the switch, the vacuum powered on, and, with a flourish, I danced around my 4×5 space (jk, the box I lived in was a bit larger,) leading the vacuum with precision and skill.

Vacuum Dance

Not 30 seconds into the sway of the vacuum dance, did I feel a tug around my throat. A tug. A yank. Smoke. Toxic fumes. And panic. I was being reeled in like like a pint-sized trout.

This is bad

Scarf in a Vacuum

If you get something stuck in your vacuum cleaner that has no business being sucked up, turn the power off. Immediately.

I failed to react promptly–probably due to the lack of oxygen reaching my brain. But, I did turn it off. Eventually.

As the fog of dust cleared, I was faced with the problem of how to free my scarf from its entrapment. The scarf was wrapped and wound within the machinery of the vacuum. It didn’t even get sucked up into the right place where it would go inside the bag.

This is as good a time as any to mention that I borrowed this vacuum from the dorm. I didn’t own one, so I had to “rent” it out. How could I bring it back broken? They’d probably bill me for it!

I did what any desperate college student would do: I searched for whatever was thin enough to dig my scarf out.

First I tried scissors–too thick.


Then I tried pens–not enough leverage.


I tried to fit my fingers inside to unravel my scarf–no luck.

I resorted to brute force; I used all the muscles I could summon in my measly biceps and pulled like it was the last game of tug-of-war on earth. I lost. (Sorry, Earth. If you chose me as your champion to defend you against all alien attacks, you wouldn’t even know what hit you because you’d be gone so fast).

In a frenzy, my eyes caught sight of my tweezers. Brilliant! Tweezers are thin enough and could be used like fingers to pry my favorite scarf from the clutches of the evil vacuum.


I spent a half an hour or more slowly plucking bits and pieces of my scarf from the vacuum. I had to unravel it, basically, thread by thread.

By the time I completely unhinged my scarf from the wreckage, it was unrecognizable–shredded and mangy like an old scraggly dog kicked to the curb.

The sad thing: I had to toss that scarf away.

Luckily, I cleared the vacuum of all signs of damage and was able to finish the job I originally set out to accomplish.

As glad as I was to leave without having caused more damage to my room, I was sad to have left my scarf behind. I’m sure everyone else was glad to see that scarf go–I basically wore it every day. C’est la vie! More like, c’est la en-vie, am I right?? Just jealous . . . the whole lot of them! (Just kidding).



4 thoughts on “The Vacuum Scarf Down

  1. Haha, great story telling style – highly enjoyable! Glad you escaped from the evil vacuum’s grasp, just a pity your scarf didn’t make it unscathed!

  2. Does your site have a contact page? I’m having a tough time locating it but, I’d like to shoot you an e-mail.
    I’ve got some creative ideas for your blog you might be interested in hearing.
    Either way, great site and I look forward to seeing it expand over time.

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