During my undergraduate degree, I spent a few summers working in a living history museum. It was one of those places where the interpreters dress in the clothing of the day and do activities typical to the time period. As a result, I have many useless skills for modern living.
Anyway, one of those activities was laundry. We would spend the morning showing visitors the joy of doing laundry without mechanical assistance, as it would have been done 100 years ago. Let me tell you, it was difficult. I have no idea how women did this and still managed to feed anyone. (Or do anything else, for that matter.)
By comparison, doing laundry with the help of modern technology seems like such a simple task:
1. Put laundry in washing machine.
2. Put laundry in dryer.
3. Fold laundry and put it away.
Easy, right? Sure. However, as most of us know, it is never quite that easy. For example, my husband and I have developed some very unique variations on this task. Let me show you what I mean.
Here is how I do the laundry:
- Put laundry in the washing machine.
- Find a pile of clothing on the freezer. Hmm, how did this get here? Mysterious! Oh well, might as well pick it up and take it upstairs.
- Feel super on top of things for doing the laundry before it spills out of the hamper, onto the floor and out the bedroom door.
- Ignore laundry for most of the day.
- Remember that the laundry is still in the washing machine 4 minutes before I go to bed.
- Frantically throw the laundry in the dryer and attempt to hang any “hang to dry items” off of every available surface on the main floor to avoid carrying the laundry drying racks upstairs. Why? Well, the drying racks are right outside my son’s bedroom door and have a habit of collapsing loudly without warning. Though he sleeps well now, he is NOT pleasant when he gets woken up by something at night. (Me neither, come to think of it…) Anyway, the point is that there is no way I am going up there. I would rather have my bras displayed all over my house all week than attempt to hang them upstairs after bedtime. The dog walker probably thinks we are super strange, but I will live with that.
- The next morning, take the laundry out and leave it in the hallway for no less than 3 days. It allows the smell of clean laundry to permeate our hallway, creating a lovely, relaxing atmosphere. Well, as long as you don’t bump into the hamper, that is.
- Eventually take the hamper upstairs to our room.
- Fold the laundry and put it away – just in time to do it all over again.
- Also, where the hell are all of my socks?????
How my husband does laundry:
- Put laundry in the washing machine.
- Ignore laundry for at least several hours.
- Pull laundry out of the washing machine and sort the items that can go in the dryer and those that can’t. Start the dryer.
- Leave the “hang to dry” items on the freezer. Never come back for them again. In fact, forget they even exist. Feign surprise when your wife discovers these items. On the freezer, you say? So weird.
- Eventually get the laundry out of the dryer and bring it upstairs, determined to fold it right away.
- Fold about half of it. Leave the rest scattered around the bed. It will be a great surprise for your wife when she goes up to bed.
- At bedtime, frantically try to fold the rest of the laundry and put it away. Start with your own laundry. Or maybe just put your own laundry away. After all, your wife will appreciate putting away her own clothes, right? Equitable division of labour and all that. Yes, definitely leave her clothes on the bed.
- Oops, no. NOPE. Totally misread that one…again. Frantically try to put your wife’s clothing away while she brushes her teeth, muttering about when you put away only your own clothing it seems like you are roommates, and that roommates definitely don’t have sex. You don’t like where this is going.
- Half-way through just give up and start putting things in random drawers. Convince yourself that it is actually more efficient for getting dressed in the morning if all of your clothes are in the same drawer.
So, as you can see, we are both excellent at laundry. Actually, it is a wonder that we are all dressed in anything remotely clean at all. Our ancestors are probably shaking their heads in complete disgust right now.
How do you do laundry? Are we the only ones who take 9 steps to do this?