Zen and the art of swimming pool maintenance

by Andrea Elizabeth

It has been years since I heard part of the audiobook, Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance, but I love the title and premise, which a long time attentive reader, my muse, would have gathered. I have heard of writers having a vision of their muse. Stephen King’s is John Tuturro’s character, John Shooter, in Secret Window. He’s a bar leaning smoking, sort of malevolent man in black. My muse is a Johnny Depp type person, who is more intellectual than Johnny Depp, who finds me fascinating and hangs on my every word. He may not agree with me, but he wants to know why I think thataway. Once he knows that, he will either challenge me or just ponder.

Anyway. I’m not in the mood for a reactionary post today. Unless I’m reacting to my pool that no matter what I’ve learned from previous spring algae blooms, I still can’t prevent them. I may have been able to prevent this one if I’d not gone to Connecticut for a week a month ago, but Fiona, our grandchild, is worth it. To prevent this from being a reactionary post, I’ll not talk about ways to combat the green cloudy mess. Swimming pool maintenance can be more about a state of being. Algae happens. Aggressive perfectionists may always have clear, sparkly pools. I have to live with the consequences of having other priorities than perfection, even though I like perfection. Some non perfectionists can live with disorder and don’t really notice it. I notice it, but while I may be just plain lazy, for now I’ll say I put up with a certain amount because I will not be a slave to perfection or let it’s lack make me completely unhappy. I like the idea that things can be fixed later, before they become ruined. There is however a point of no return, hoarders beware. It’s the difference between annoying fleas and an infestation. So now I’ll go pour in another 2 gallons of bleach, wait an hour, put in new shock, wait an hour, and then the rest of my second kind of algicide that still hasn’t done the trick.