I like to think of myself as a fairly tolerant girl, but there are some things in life that I genuinely hate. Vending machine ‘coffee’ is one of these things. Bullying is another. Not to mention cotton wool, the Big Scary Roundabout at Coleraine, war and midges.
However, the thing that really takes the biscuit and is the icing on the cake (apologies for double food analogy – I’m a bit hungry), the one thing that makes my blood boil and robs me of my peace, my Most Hated Thing In The Entire Universe is: trying to change a duvet cover.
Oh MAN, to borrow an expression from my neighbours, it has got to be the most thankless, unrewarding, physically draining, smugly frustrating task that ever was. Taking the old cover off is absolutely no problem. I’ve got that down to a fine art. I expect I could probably go pro soon in the whole taking-the-cover-off game. It’s when you attempt to replace it with the new one that things start to get so depressing you just want to hurl yourself out of the bedroom window. Turn it inside out and hold the corners says your mum. Stuff the whole duvet inside, grab an end, and shake it contradicts a friend. Everywhere, they are everywhere with their over-confident advice and their ‘foolproof’ tips that clearly haven’t come up against a fool of this calibre before. I’ve tried everything. I’ve followed every last sodding tip and still it takes me at least half an hour to complete this weekly exercise in self-punishment. Either I don’t have enough hands or the duvet is too big or God is teaching me a lesson in endurance and I’m just not getting it.
I’m standing there wrestling with the wretched thing, grimly trying to work out how much time I spend doing this as a percentage of my life thus far. What about when I’m 70? How many entire days will I have wasted by then, just shaking a duvet cover till I’m red in the face? Maybe it’s just greedy of me to be sleeping in a double bed when there’s only one of me (but I like to sprawl, and there does need to be room for Kat the Cat and Eeyore), and perhaps double duvet covers were designed to be changed by a team, not as an individual effort. It’s almost enough to make you wish you were married, so that there’d be someone to help with putting the duvet cover on.
To top it all off, tonight I had to extract a facecloth and an odd sock (could this be an answer at last??) from inside the cover before I even engaged in battle, and then when I was triumphantly buttoning the last button I realised the cat was somehow inside with the duvet, panicking and trying in vain to escape.
It should not be this difficult, and I demand, albeit somewhat hysterically, that something be done about it. In an age of both breathtaking technology and unprecedented laziness, surely there’s an easier way?