There is a story in Greek mythology of a king. King Augeas was famous for his stables full of cattle. You might say he was the “cattle baron” of his mythological time.
Oddly enough, for a king with a wealth of cattle, he didn’t care much about the cleanliness of his stables. He never cleaned them. Demolition by neglect, I guess. Mythological legend has it that his 3,000 cattle crapped up the stables for years and years. Can you imagine? One can only hope they were free range cattle and were pastured far from the stables during the day, to walk around a little and shake the dung from their feet.
The task of cleaning the Augean stables fell to Hercules and he was able to clean them by diverting two rivers to wash away the accreted matter.
A few months ago, I bought a new toilet from a plumbing distributor, F.W. Webb. Nothing fancy, but a tiny step above the thrones sold in big box stores. I asked for cleaning advice and was told to use Dawn dish soap on both the bowl and the tank. Washing the inside of the toilet tank apparently keeps residue from building up around the flapper.
Prior to my visit to F.W. Webb, I’d never bought Dawn dish soap. Since then, I’ve used it to clean my toilet, my bathroom sinks, and my tub. I think it works well, it doesn’t scratch, and my bathroom cleaning regimen is much simpler.
The 2016 U.S. election cycle has been dirty. As I look back over the weeks and months of it and think about the collective national conversation we’ve experienced through media, I feel like I’ve been in the Augean stables. The Dawn dish detergent has kept my bathrooms clean, but my mind and spirit are soiled with the accumulated dung of this campaign. I wish I could wash my brain out with a detergent. That’s the kind of brainwashing I’d be interested in.