It’s 6:20 P.M. Friday night and my baked potato is bouncing up and down on my table. I know for a fact that it's Friday because Sam down the hall plays his death metal music at an ear splitting volume for 1.5 hours every week. He will eventually wander off to his local punk club and then "Mr. Reggae" will crank up his tunes on the other side of the hall.
Nothing bothers me anymore except when the neighbour on the left starts some sort of band practice with amplifiers at 11 pm. What I do not like is sometimes having to spend most of my day to do laundry. People kind of adopt the casual laid back dressing here and some look, well, a tad dusty.
So heaven forbid you do laundry when two people who have obviously not washed in a month decide it's laundry day. There will be grocery shopping carts in the small room loaded with enough laundry to ship on a goodwill mission to some third world country. You know that they are going to wash for hours in the only two washers that are available. When you finally get a washer there is going to be enough dog and cat hair in there to knit a fancy mohair scarf.
I push my cart into the laundry room and greet someone old enough to be my son. He smiles and says,
“Boy I see you doing laundry a lot,” and then shakes his head.
I want to scream at him that yes I do laundry frequently because I prefer to wear clean underwear every day. I remain silent as I know that would probably be over his head as he does not wear underwear. I can also vouch his sparing of the briefs has nothing to do with saving the environment as I watch him pour his “Green” detergent into the soap compartment.
The laundry sign says not to use more than ¼ cup but seeing that he looks like he left his mother barely weeks ago I am not shocked to see him pour in an endless river. I want to bang on the information sign above him and point but my eyes are too busy trying to avoid the young plumber’s crack that is being flashed.
I notice the dryer is full of someone’s clothes and they are cold. Sometimes clothing is left in the laundry room for days, and weeks even. I often ponder what they wear, seeing I run out of clothing quickly and wonder if they are caring for their jeans in the new fashionable way. Knowing that these people have not watched much of the Style channel nor read Rachel Zoe's column I quickly erase this out of my mind.
I realize that I should change my laundry days but I am old and stubborn. I finally get my laundry in and see the washer next to me has almost the same time left. I choose not use the extra ten minutes so I can score the good dryer first.
An hour later I run down as fast as I can to see that my washer still has one minute left. I have no idea how the timers work on these machines as when there is one minute left it is usually about eight. It does not make sense and I lean against the washer wondering how these women get their cheap thrills on a washing machine.
Is it the washer or the dryer? The washer is far too cold looking and I think that the dryer might be better if I let it run on high-setting 20 minutes beforehand. Or maybe add a large blanket that might cause some drum imbalance? That might be better than a deluxe vibrator at the "Good Vibrations" store.
I look at the dryer and see it is still full of cold dry clothes. Taking charge I put them all into a laundry basket. One thing about these kids is that they know how to do laundry as they separate their whites and colours. I have never done that in my life and I actually refuse to.
It's much like someone telling me that I cannot wear white after Labour Day. I don’t like rules so I do not separate anything. I don’t own any whites anyways so it all goes in together. Whatever does not make it through a wash just does not make it and that's that!
I notice a sock clinging for life and know that had I not pulled it out there would be one more sock missing in this world. Another life saved. Junior comes back in and takes the lint filter out and cleans it. I shake my head. He cleans the lint filter, separates the whites yet wears no underwear.
I walk by 15 minutes later to get the mail and see him sitting on top of the dryer. Obviously he has figured out that imbalance in the dryer does the trick. Now if he would only learn the perils of not wearing underwear he will be on his way to making someone a fine husband some day.
Text and Images: Linda Seccaspina 2011