In Suzanne Britt’s essay titled “Neat People vs. Sloppy People,” she is essentially making a comparison between those who are neat freaks and those who are more unorganized. It is clear that she is more on the side of those who are a little less organized. Britt says that “neat people” are selfish and unmotivated. It is clear that she is more in tune with the so called “sloppy people.” Britt begins the story by saying the difference between the two is based on moral. However, is it really moral that makes them different? What is right in one person’s eyes may be different in another’s. Britt goes on to say that “sloppy people” are not really sloppy just victims of their own integrity. Unorganized people are just more carefree, and not as uptight as the people who are habitual about their cleanliness. People who are unorganized, live in a fairy tale land and can’t really see that their house is untidy, with piles of papers on their desks, book cases that are overflowing with books and magazines that need to be sorted, or that stack of mail they have been meaning to go through.
Untidy and unorganized, promise themselves that they will get around to doing those tasks someday, however, they have other things going on that are just as important. Britt goes on to say that “sloppy people” save everything. The last letter they received from a relative who has passed away, post cards from travelling relatives, locks of hair from their children along with the newspaper clipping telling about how one of their children was the team hero at the football game. They have good intentions of putting together that scrapbook to keep their prized possessions organized. They even tell themselves that they will sit down with the old magazines and read them so they can be tossed out. Britt says “sloppy people” never truly get organized. They keep everything, with full intentions of filing it away, and getting organized, but they set their sights so high that it just can’t happen like they want it to. Britt states that they just cannot bear to part with anything. Family heirlooms clutter the drawers, laundry piles up, and yet they can’t seem to do anything about it.
When they say that they are going to tackle that project someday, it never seems to arrive. When they do try to clear that pile of papers off their desk, the end result is that they have made new piles, and someday they will get around to those piles too. Britt then goes on to talk about the “neat people.” She considers these people to be careless, heartless, and cannot stand to touch anything twice. They are habitual about their house being clean. No junk mail makes it into the house; it goes straight into the garbage can. All family heirlooms are considered to be another “dust catcher” and they end up in the trash as well. You will never see piles of papers on their desk; they would clear them off with one fast swoop of their hand, straight into the trash. Britt says “neat people don’t care about the process, they just want results.” They don’t want to touch something twice and the trash can has become their new best friend. If the trashcan was next to the mailbox, they would be very happy about that.
It would save them time from bringing unwanted mail into the house. Britt states that these habitually clean people place cleanliness above all else, including economics. She states they are very wasteful, as they will walk through a room and toss out anything that could collect dust or make a mess. Britt knew a neat person who “threw away a perfectly good dish drainer because it had mold on it.” Are they really that lazy that they couldn’t grab the bleach, spray some on it and throw it in the dishwasher? According to this author they are! These habitually clean people will simply sell their furniture when it is time to move. Britt says it is next to impossible to borrow something as simple as a cup of sugar as these types do not purchase any more than they have an immediate use for.
In the days of this economy, many people are clipping coupons to save money. Not these habitually clean people. They wouldn’t “clip a coupon, save a leftover, or even the reuse of a plastic whipped cream container” even though it has the potential of saving them money. What is even sadder is that habitually clean people won’t own a plant, it makes too much of a mess, have pets, because they get “fleas” and if they had their way they would get rid of the children, keep them confined to a certain room in the house, or as Britt says, “send them off to boarding school because they leave scuffmarks on the floor” or worse yet they might drag mud in the house which I’m sure would be appalling to them.