Does your sock drawer always contain clean socks, even though you never seem to get round to washing them? Is there cooked food on the table at regular intervals even though you're not even really sure which of the white boxes in the kitchen is the oven? Do you ever find yourself wondering why people bother to dust when it never causes any problems in your house?
Well, what can the explanation be apart from the presence of brownies, those small elf-like creatures who come out at night to do housework?
I mean, your wife or mother is too busy being a teacher, child-minder or nuclear physicist to think about that sort of trivial thing, isn't she?
But still, don't be disheartened at the difficulty of this spot the frippet, because a housewife (in this case often pronounced HUSSiff) is also a small portable sewing kit. They're often issued to soldiers.
If you spot one of those then, just as a matter of interest, it's the pointy end of the needle that goes through the fabric first.
Spot the frippet: housewife. Here are two Old English words which together give us something extra. A rare and cherishable thing it is, too.