Cleaning is the act of making something invisible.
Clean floor? Invisible. Who notices a clean floor, other than the one who has just cleaned it?
Clean socks? Invisible. However, an empty sock drawer is so noticeable as to be made of neon.
Clean silverware? Invisible. The only time anyone notices the state of the silverware drawer is when they find it out of spoons.
Go over the list in your head. Can you think of anything that becomes more visible, more noticeable, by virtue of being clean? Dishes, the kitchen counter, the dining table . . . ?
Now I'll admit that once you get to a certain level of messy, a sudden thorough cleaning does stand out. But most of the time, the constant picking up only serves to keep things in the background.
When Ajax and Truffles shed*, I clean up dog hair continuously. I don't do a whole-house vacuuming, because I hate the noise of the vacuum. But I do pet-rake rugs and microfiber-dust-mop up hair. Sometimes I scoop up a fluff as I go down the hallway, usually with a little exasperated noise.
When we went away for three days, our dog-sitter fed the dogs faithfully, but was not expected to do the cleaning-up of the dog hair. My husband was amazed at how much shed dog hair had accumulated. But it wasn't that much more: it was just that no dog hair had been picked up for three days.
Anything that gets cleaned up all the time is invisible. It's things that don't get cleaned that flicker at you even when you are trying not to look at them.
(This is one of the things I think about as I am knitting sock rows and reading a library book.)
Now, must go attempt to catch up with (is that like cleaning?) email.
*My husband once told me, "Dogs only shed twice a year:
[pause for effect]
the first half, and the second half."