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Posted by on Mar 14, 2022 in Retirement Humour |

Living Retired — ‘Person Who Smells Like Pledge’

Living Retired — ‘Person Who Smells Like Pledge’

Living Retired — ‘Person Who Smells Like Pledge’

By Gary Chalk

The Chalk household is in line for a makeover. Jan and I have decided to hang up our brooms, mops, and dust cloths. Our plan is to trick someone to come in each week and transform our place into what you see on the cover of Better Homes & Gardens.

We know what needs to be done: the dusting, mop the floors, vacuum the carpets, make the windows shine, make the mirrors sparkle, wipe down the California shutters, clean the kitchen and bathroom countertops, scrub the gas cooktop, and wipe the ceiling fans. What we don’t know is what to call this miracle worker.

“Jan, it seems to me we are looking for a cleaning lady.”

“Gary, you are sooo out of touch. The person is called a housekeeper.”

“But Jan, a housekeeper is the same as a maid, a cleaning person.”

Jan wouldn’t let it go so I explained, “Jan whoever we hire will come with spray containers of lemon-scented cleaners, so let’s agree who we are looking for is a ‘Person Who Smells Like Pledge.’”

Jan shrugged, rolled her eyes, and wiped a layer of dust off the television.

Last week we made arrangements for ‘Person Who Smells Like Pledge’ to visit our house — not to clean — but for a ‘meet and greet!’

“Gary, this is going to be a pleasant social visit where we get to know each other, and she can see the house and determine what needs to be done.”

“Jan ‘meet and greet’ is cleaning code for convincing ‘Person Who Smells Like Pledge’ that she will only need to wear a hazmat suit the first day she cleans our house.”

The day before the meet and greet with ‘Person Who Smells Like Pledge’ we had lots of work to do to get ready.

“Gary, the last thing we want is for you to be wearing those ripped sweatpants you’ve had on since Covid-19 began. I have laid out a pair of slacks for you to wear along with your matching L.L. Bean cashmere sweater that you look good in.”

“Jan, next you’re going to tell me you’re baking muffins with homemade jam.”

“Yes, your favourite Morning Glory muffins with dried cranberries and pineapple. I hope she likes them.”

As sure as Hoover ‘beats as it sweeps as it cleans’ I knew where Jan was going with our meet and greet with ‘Person Who Smells Like Pledge.’

“Gary, she will be here before you know it. We need to get to work now and get the house cleaned up, so it is presentable.”

“Jan, I am confused. Isn’t it the responsibility for ‘Person Who Smells Like Pledge’ to clean our house and make it presentable?”

“Gary, we don’t want her to think we live in a university dorm with empty beer cartons for end tables. Just pick up your dirty clothes and put the empty beer bottles away.”

Yesterday, ‘Person Who Smells Like Pledge’ arrived for our meet and greet. The house was looking good, but then it happened…

Suddenly, Jan was overcome with an uncontrollable burst of sneezing. ACHOO! ACHOO! ACHOO! “Gary, what is this smell in here? I can’t breathe?”

“I sprayed ‘Lilac Breeze’ scent air freshener throughout the main floor and finished off with ‘Caribbean Sweetgrass & Sandalwood’ scent in the kitchen.”

“OMG Gary! Anyone worth their weight in microfibre floor mops knows you never mix floral scents and botanicals.”

“Hey Jan, when you combine ‘Person Who Smells Like Pledge’ with ‘Lilac Breeze’ and ‘Caribbean Sweetgrass and Sandalwood’ the scents will probably neutralize. It’ll smell like a chemical factory.” Just don’t light a match!”

The meet and greet with ‘Person Who Smells Like Pledge’ went well — and when the dust settled we had a deal. As she left I couldn’t resist saying, “Dust Do It!” Jan shrugged and wiped the dust off the door handle.


‘Living Retired’ is written by humour columnist Gary Chalk.

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