That’s Cool Beans!

by D.J. Paris on March 3, 2013

Turns out my mom was wrong.

Sure, there are moments when my condo resembles a dishelved hobo riding the rails, but mostly it’s close to tidy. Note I said “tidy” and not “clean.” I never dust and rarely sweep. If I’m having someone over I run the Swiffer. It’s not really supposed to double as a vacuum, but, hey, close enough.

My mom has thoroughly shamed me over the years since the divorce by saying, “If you bring a woman back to this mess she will run screaming.” And, to be fair, she’s got a point. Nobody wants to date a slob. Well, I guess other slobs are cool with it. Let’s put it this way – I don’t want to date a slob.

I’ve become masterful as keeping the place tidy. At first glance it will appear as if I steer a pretty tight ship (I don’t think that’s the correct expression, matey). Upon further examination you will discover that the baseboards in the kitchen are splattered with marinara sauce, there is tiny chihuahua hair all over the pillows, and the underside of the top toilet seat in the master bath has a small pee stain.

I should write a whole essay on how a physicist would have a hard time explaining this phenomena. Pee should not be there. I can’t explain it. But it is.

My mom however sees through this charade and simply walks in and goes, “I can smell the cat box! Gross!”

I finally broke down and ordered a housekeeping package. I vowed this time to only use a reputable service as the last person I hired via Craigslist stole a bunch of my shit. I found a Groupon for half-off and placed the order. They called me a day later to schedule and upsold me on the deep clean package. It was like $100 more but, hey, I’m pretty sure mold is not supposed to be growing on the ice cubes in the freezer. I needed the full monty.

The woman who came to the apartment lumbered up the stairs with her supplies. She was in her early forties and overweight. I always feel bad when delivery people come visit and have to hike up four flights. It’s hard enough when I do it every day. She had to take a few rests and now that I think about it, I probably should have offered to carry up the mop. It didn’t occur to me.

She was very sweet and got to work. Since I had the bad experience with the thief I decided to stick around. Now, I only have 1250 square feet. It’s not like I was just going to hang out in the west study while she dusted up the portiere. So I took a nap, read, and watched some television.

Cut to five hours later – she was STILL cleaning. I hadn’t had a woman stick around that long in my condo since my sister who came to spend the night on a business trip last April.

After each room the cleaning lady would come up to me and say, “Mr. Paris, can you come check my work?” Now, I never check even my own work, much less somebody else’s. But she insisted. And each time I would give it a two-second glance and say, “Looks perfect.”

Then, without exception she would get excited and say the exact same thing.

“That’s cool beans!”

I haven’t heard that expression since I was a lame white kid in central Illinois saying that during my junior year of high school. Bowling on a Friday night since I didn’t have a date? That’s cool beans!

Each time she said those words I would LIL – laugh in loud. I should have recorded it. She did such a good job I’m going to have her back in a month or so and we’ll get that voice on tape. She didn’t just say it, she exuded those beans. First, it was funny that she was so excited to get my approval. I always feel a little shame that I should be cleaning the place myself. Then, those words. Cool beans. It’s just a perfect expression of joy that nobody says anymore.

The weird thing about that phrase is that if you actually ate cool beans, you’d be disappointed. Hot beans trump cold beans.

Oh, to get back to the beginning on why my mom was wrong. Since I’ve started dating a number of women have made their way into the condo. For dessert or a drink or to meet the dog. So, I’ve had to keep it tidy. It’s not clean. Well, now it is. But it never really was before. And nobody has run screaming.

Cool Beans

These are definitely cool beans.

photo credit: kugel via photopin cc

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{ 14 comments… read them below or add one }

Amanda March 3, 2013 at 12:59 pm

I haven’t heard that expression in ages….. Still. Very funny!


Robyn March 3, 2013 at 5:56 pm

That’s a good one!

I have 3 male sons, I know why I have pee on the toilet seats, on the floor next to the toilet, oh and on the rim of the garbage can. Apparently aim is not important in the middle of the night.


Lisa Newlin March 3, 2013 at 11:06 pm

Maybe “cool beans” aren’t temperature cool, but maybe they’re cool because they’re magic. Maybe she’s using the “cool” beans to work voodoo on your condo.

If so, see if you can buy some of those beans for me.


Quirky Chrissy March 4, 2013 at 10:28 am

I used to say “Cool beans” ALL the friggin’ time. When I was in high school. And knew I wasn’t cool. But that is a phrase that should so come back! :) I’m going to go rock out with it this week. Just once though.

Also, the only time I ran screaming from a dude’s place was when it looked like I was on an episode of hoarders. That was fucking terrible.


Angus March 4, 2013 at 10:46 am

“Turns on my mom was wrong.”

If you are that sloppy with your lead sentence, why should I be compelled to read any further?


MAJK (@Safireblade) March 4, 2013 at 11:36 am

Because you are dying to know what his mom was wrong about :P


Ericamos March 4, 2013 at 4:22 pm

I haven’t heard that statement since high school either! And I feel like it was one of those things that only stuck around for a year. So funny that people are still using that expression!


MrsFun March 5, 2013 at 12:41 pm

I seriously have the giggles and will make it a point to use that phrase at least once a week now.If nothing more to see how people react.


Daily Dose of Damn! March 7, 2013 at 12:29 pm

I am now going to request the lady who cleans my house, exclaim “Cool Beans” after completing each room! I can see how this would make me inordinately giddy! Love your writing. I’m off to dig some more. Carry on.


Daily Dose of Damn! March 7, 2013 at 12:30 pm

No clue why there’s a comma after house and not after exclaim. Shit


Kate Hall March 11, 2013 at 11:22 pm

Your place doesn’t sound that bad. It sounds like my place. Except we no longer have animals living here, and I’m liking that. Okay, I need to catch up on your other posts. Cool beans!


Trish March 18, 2013 at 8:10 pm

I started saying ‘cool beans’ recently and I have no idea where I got it from. I grew up in western Canada and I can safely say I don’t think anyone said it over there. Somehow I picked it up in the last few years living in NYC or spending time in the southern States. I don’t know. The point is, I recently told someone I thought that I made it up. I just didn’t think I had heard from anyone and that it just came from my own originality. Lol. That friend has yet to let me live that shit down. So anyways, I enjoyed your post about your cleaning lady saying Cool Beans.


TLNicholas April 3, 2013 at 10:20 am

Wow, that phrase really takes me back!


Brittany Jessup April 8, 2013 at 10:38 am

That’s my favorite phrase:)


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