Marie Kondo: likes to keep a tidy house

The Japanese expert has a show that aims to help us streamline our lives. But it is just as likely to end up sowing discord among couples

Name: Marie Kondo.

Age: 34.

Who is she? Everyone’s talking about her, she’s a Japanese organising consultant.

A what? Oh, look, she’s got a show on Netflix called Tidying Up With Marie Kondo. I’ve heard great things about it. Shall we give it a go … babe?

Really? A whole TV show about tidying up? It’s more than that. It’s about decluttering and how that can make you happier and less stressed.

Can’t we catch up on Les Mis instead? Yeah, we will, hon, but decluttering will maybe make us less mis!

Groan. Hey, this is interesting: she has found a special place in the house of this family she is helping, and they are thanking it – the house – for protecting and sheltering them.

For being a house, basically? It’s almost spiritual the way she’s kneeling there, eyes closed.

You fancy her! No, it’s not about that. It’s about learning to cherish everything you have so you can achieve happiness for your family.

Zzzzzzz. And look, she’s going to start with clothes, then move on to books, paper, komono …

Kimono, that is clothes, isn’t it? You’d LOVE me to get rid of them, wouldn’t you? KOmono. It means kitchen, bathroom, garage, everything miscellaneous. Finally she’ll deal with sentimental items. Anyway, look, she’s getting all this lady’s clothes out of the closets and drawers, and she’s making a big pile of them all on the bed … I love this bit; look, she had no idea how much stuff she had.

Hang on, have you seen it before? No, no, no. We’re watching it together, for the first time. Maybe you – we! – could get some tips from her.

Whoa! Hang on, I see what’s going on here. Who does all the cleaning in this house? No, I know. You do, most of it, and I’m going to do more. But this isn’t about cleaning, it’s about decluttering. And you do have quite a lot of, you know, clothes, and I have noticed some sneaking in to my space, and that’s fine, in the short term, because actually I did get rid of a load of shirts the other day, because they weren’t giving me any joy. That’s what she says you have to do. And then the stuff that you do keep, she shows you how to fold, this special way, into three. We could watch a bit more to see if that’s what happens.

Shut it! And you know what thing in this house isn’t giving me joy any more, who I am seriously considering getting rid of? Yes, I think I do.

Don’t say: “Arigatou gozaimasu.”

Do say: “Back to Les Mis, then?”