The New Zealand Railways Magazine, Volume 11, Issue 8 (November 2, 1936)
Washing-Up — Becomes a Health Exercise
Becomes a Health Exercise.
Washing-up is a household task which is never entirely pleasant. The only seeming advantage connected with it is the soothing effect in cold weather of laving the hands in hot water.
Christopher Morley once portrayed a man who was the household washer-up and who, to mitigate the irksomeness of the task, fitted up a bookstand over the sink. I don't remember his mentioning how the difficulty of turning pages with wet hands was overcome. Reading at the sink is not a recreation many would advocate; but I do consider that any person whose occupation requires intense mental activity should offer to wash the dinner dishes at night, the idea being to use this as a time for relaxation: with the hands moving gently in the suds, consciously to purge the mind of worries, eliminate strains.
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Before one can pay attention to relaxing the mind, it is necessary to have washing-up rationalized. Method is the thing. Dishes should be stacked according to size after having been carefully scraped and, if necessary, rinsed under the cold tap. Silver and cutlery should be collected in separate piles. If plenty of hot water is available, have the spoons and forks standing in a basin of hot water with a dash of soap-powder added. A stir round later will cleanse them.
Keep the soap-powder packet handy so that the necessity for shaking the soap-saver wildly in order to make a lather may be obviated. The hygienic dish-washer has a double-sink, one part for rinsing. If a second sink is not available, have a basin of hot water for the final dip. By rinsing of tea-towels every morning, the perfect housewife will see that plenty of clean towels are ready for the hot dishes—or perhaps there is a rack.
To avoid the wiping or scrubbing of a wooden bench use a tray for draining.
By method and by conscious relaxation, a hated household task becomes a useful mental exercise.