About ten years ago, I purchased a small white foldable hairbrush from a Muji store. It was at an airport, either in New York or Boston, but I don’t remember exactly where I was, nor do I remember where I was going. I do remember picking it out of a bin of brushes, all exactly the same, all wrapped in crinkly clear plastic, and deciding that it was something I should own.
In the past decade, I’ve used this brush thousands of times, and it never fails to please me. I like its color—white, but somewhat sheer, not entirely opaque, better than clear plastic, but somehow very plastic, like the essence of plastic, the epitome of plastic. I like its size—it is small enough to fit in any purse, and exactly the right width to add a slight curl to my bangs. I like its texture—the tongs are hard and scrape against my scalp like little claws. I like how neat it appears, how uniform, how small and rectangular. When it is folded, it takes up just a few inches of space. It weighs almost nothing. It is easy to clean, and so it always looks clean. Even when every else in my car is covered in dog hair and the bottom of my backpack is filled with mysterious sand, the hairbrush remains white as teeth, tidy as a dustpan.
I love this object, and although I just told you why, I don’t really know why. It’s orderly and I’m not. Maybe that’s it.