“There are guests coming.”
Mess, mess, mess.
Put a pretty book on the living room coffee table for decoration.
Vacuum the rug, and cut off the scraggly pieces that the cats tore up.
Hope no one notices.
Organize the shelves by size order.
Name order so they can't tell you organized it just because they are coming.
Dust places people won't see.
That way they can't remember how your house smelled.
Hide the tears in the sheets.
In the pillows.
In the curtains.
Accept the compliments on how much people love that lamp in the corner.
Tell the story of how you got it again.
Keep their attention there.
Keep their attention away from the stains on the bathroom door.
Cover the sunk in floor with a rug.
Cut that rug so it fits around the toilet without anyone noticing that isn't what it's meant for.
Paint over old grout with white out.
Use extension cords to get a fan in the bathroom to blow the smell away.
Burn oils and incense.
Ignore the cats constant meowing.
Play soft jazz over the TV to drown them out.
Talk about where that painting is from.
Lie about where that painting is from.
Use the good pillows.
Keep people from going in the office.
Don't let people see the room that's gone unfinished for years.
Make them think you have more money than you do.