Everyday Artists

The world's greatest artists walk you through simple, everyday tasks.

See more

What you are, bed, you are by accident of restless nights and languid mornings. I am myself. There are and will be a thousand wrinkles; there are two hands. Now crack your knuckles in vigorous crescendo and begin with the corners. Align them, atop one another. And recommend this virtue to your children; it alone, not money, can make you happy. I speak from experience.

We shall seize the sheets by the throat. They shall never wholly overcome us, even as they bind and cling to the coverlet like a sticky legato of discontent. Beware that the sheet does not expose itself beneath, for nothing is more intolerable than to have to admit to yourself your own errors.

Pull taut, so as to create a vibrato of codependence, but not so taut that you further dislodge that which has already been established in the corners—order. After all, if order upsets order, it is not order at all, but an elegy of wretchedness that we must dispel together.

Let never a good leggiero of pat downs slip from the realm of possibility. Stray pockets of air withstand not a staccato of firm slaps. Just tend to the ripples that chute afterwards, let them not run astray for long, lest they gain a sense of independence. Destroy them. Cast them into a melodic purgatory, as in Ode to Joy. Push from the middle towards the edges, where they fall to their demise as if bedeviled pigs cast from the presence of the Lord himself.

If seeking supplementary solutions, and should time be on your side as it is in an adagio, rip from the bed the topmost layer. Strip until you’ve found the bottommost and begin, as if creating life, from nothing. Lay the sheet like a shroud upon the deceased, fold twice near the pillows. No need to tuck them under, for this is no concerto. Repeat the step for the coverlet or, if preference deviates, the comforter.

It is in the middle layer, if you be one of such ilk, that complications could arise. Like an underhanded cheese in a sneaky sandwich upon which we dare to have feasted. Be aware that in straightening a layer that is both above and below, you risk upsetting the structure of everything, and what fear derides itself upon such potentialities. Deftness of the hands and sharpness of the mind culls this threat like a sonata upon the night sky. Place the middle calmly upon the bottom, caring nothing for the mêlée thus caused on the top, for its time approaches. A true bed-maker is expected to be all that is noble-minded, and in the nobility of mind can you find a sequential line of thinking, not marred by what’s to come, accepting that one thing begets another. Finish the middle layer, the blanket, as you did the sheet. And proceed to the topmost layer.

The pillow! Who comprehends its sopping dents from a night bearing the viscous weight of your solitary bonce? With whom can one consult concerning this great devil of incontinence? A properly fluffed pillow, which I long hold as the mediator between the spiritual and the sensual life, is essential to a bed awaiting a bedder. Turkish March your hands to the sides of the pillow and push sternly with resounding half notes, redistributing that which houses its hidden comforts—feathers, foam, and the like.

Oft there are frills. Decorative pillows that exist solely for the eye. I have never been one for superfluities, but judge not those that are. Should you possess pillows ne’er meant to be slept upon, or meant for comfort of the body, prop them atop the coverlet. Not beneath, and certainly not aside. Symmetry is encouraged, though not wholly required. Instead, trust the eye as much as you trust the ear. I do not speak from experience. Your senses wish the bedding properly dispensed, do they not? Your body acts as one.

Evenly distributed sheets—an andante of duvets—possess a higher revelation than all wisdom and philosophy. It is the foundational salvo to a day that requires triumph of the moment. Once properly adorned, you see the mark of a truly admirable soul—the mark of retaining steadfastness in the face of distorted bedding.