Five-Minute Betterment: “Tolerate no uncleanliness in body, cloaths, or habitation.” – Benjamin Franklin, 13 Virtues

I like to clean.  I think it’s therapeutic and obviously it’s good to keep your body, your cloaths, and your habitation clean.  I also like to cook which gives me plenty of opportunity to clean and which also leads me to today’s FMB.  Clean your dishes.. BY HAND!  Not all of them.  Just the few I’m sure you’ve got laying around.

The Family Glass has resided at two habitations that were devoid of a dishwasher and one with a dishwasher on the occasional fritz.  When you don’t have a dishwasher, you learn a few things.  First of all, you learn that washing your own dishes is tedious and that dishwashers are amazing inventions.  Second you learn how to make meals without using every dish in the kitchen.

It’s good to relive that experience every now and then.  Just the other day, I went in and cleaned the kitchen but there were a few glasses, a colander, and the pot I used to make macaroni and cheese sitting in the sink.  The dishwasher was full of clean dishes that I wasn’t quite ready to put up.  I didn’t want to look at the dirty dishes any longer, so I took a few minutes and washed them by hand.  No big deal.

Here’s the thing about hand-washed dishes.  They look (and probably are) much cleaner than dishes in a dishwasher.  Sometimes, especially if you’re renting your habitation with an older dishwasher, the dishes come out looking kind of filmy or grimy [there’s a many-minute betterment for cleaning out your dishwasher that I might get to later].  When you clean them by hand, you know that they’re getting clean and you know that you won’t have any food stuck on them.  Also, you’re not giving bacteria (or worse, roaches) too much time to feed and reproduce on the dishes while they sit in the sink.

Also, your knives and pots and pans are much better off being hand-washed.  The dishwasher will bang up a good knife something awful, chipping the blade or tip beyond repair.  Nonstick cookware (especially ceramic) should be wiped, not scrubbed, to maintain the nonstick coating.  Stainless steel pots and pans are often dishwasher safe, but it’s recommended that you hand wash them to “preserve the luster” (per the Use and Care section of Calphalon’s website).

It’ll do you well to wash something by had every now and then, whether to preserve your body, cloaths, or habitation, or to increase your appreciation, gratitude, and spiritual health.

After all, Cleanliness may very well be close to Godliness, my friends.



P. S. – Click here to read Art of Manliness’ exploration of Benjamin Franklin’s Thirteen Virtues and how they apply to being a better man and living a better life.  Good stuff.


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