It’s the little steam mop that could!

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Who knew that the steam engine that James Watt perfected in 1763 would have such an impact on my cleaning habits in 2012.

I brave the crowds every Black Friday and buy all the gifts on my list for family and friends, especially my daughter Bri, whose Santa wish-list is a wee bit longer than the Rime of the Ancient Mariner. This year however, I felt compelled to buy for myself and the heck with everyone else, besides I had already given Bri money and she went out at midnight to buy her own. What a relief.

My present to me was the Shark Lift-Away Professional Steam Pocket Mop with attachments. I have watched the infomercial for a long time and have at many times picked up the phone to order it, but for whatever reason, put down the receiver and continued cleaning with mop, bucket, and elbow grease. However, the deal offered this past weekend at Bed, Bath and Beyond was so good that I just had to take the plunge.

When I brought it home, my husband said, “Why did you buy this? What’s wrong with just cleaning the floors the way you always do?” My answer was “Well for one thing, I really don’t like hard work, and for another, I wouldn’t mind cleaning the floor if say someone else (hint, hint) did it for me. But since pigs flying is a better probability, I treated myself to the steam mop.”

That effectively zipped his lips.

As I opened the box, I felt just like a kid on Christmas morning. I couldn’t wait to see if the gadget lived up to its infomercial potential.

Well, I can truthfully say, without any reservations, “Wow, what a great invention it is.”

This little steam engine cleaned, shined, and sanitized like it was nobody’s business. With just one push of the button, my ceramic kitchen floor shone, the living room hard wood floor gleamed like new, I needed sun glasses just to gaze at my tiled bathroom walls, and without too much scrubbing, my stove top and oven door were spiffy enough to pass military muster.

Did I mention that the 99 percent of the germs were DOA at the first puff of steam? Well, they were.

James Watt would have been proud.

Not for Nuthin, but short of having a cleaning staff hit my house, the Shark Lift-Away Professional Steam Pocket Mop is one of the best presents I’ve ever given myself.

Now if I could only get Bob to do all the cleaning for me — nah, I’d better watch out for those flying pigs

Joanna DelBuono's column appears every Wednesday on She can be reached at
Updated 11:48 am, January 16, 2019
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