Everyone has heard about Dobby the House Elf in Harry Potter. I hope you have one and that you are kind and considerate to your house-elf. Most of us non-residents of the Potterworld are not so fortunate.
Our houses are inhabited by Dobby’s evil twin, Slobby. Where a house-elf goes about cleaning up and tidying, the house-imp is responsible for all the irritating things for which, up until now, you have probably blamed your partner or kids.
1 leaves the milk bottle with only a quarter of an inch in it and does not get out another one?
2 generously bestows you a lavatory roll with only two sheets of paper remaining while there are a pile of fresh ones just out of arm’s reach?
3 steals a vital ingredient for the meal you had planned which you notice just five minutes after the shops have closed?
4 sneaks in and fills up the vacuum cleaner when you know that you emptied it last time?
5 gleefully takes freshly laundered towels, makes them damp and throws them on the bathroom floor?
6 delights in picking up your carefully-squeezed toothpaste and squishes it in the middle of the tube?
7 crawls into your underwear drawer, mixes all the socks up, puts them in unmatched pairs and then steals two unmatched ones?
8 leaves bread/toast crumbs all over the cutting board and butter dish?
9 methodically stacks dirty dishes on top of the dishwasher instead of inside it?
It’s Slobby, that’s who. So before you have another steaming row with your spouse or teenagers, have a look down the side of the sofa, because that is where Slobby lives with his hoard of treasure – loose change, remote controls, sweeties, piles of fluff and that crochet hook you could never find.
Congratulations – you are the proud owner of a house-imp.