Despite the paper clips helping it run and the speaker magnets required to keep the door closed, our dryer finally died. Just to keep our family clothed (except Sarah, she could go weeks without clean laundry), I visited the laundromat for 3 quick visits this past week. Since everyone else in blog world leads glamorous lives of new technology and household appliances that work (and vacations), I’ll pause a moment to reflect on the modern laundromat. Our neighborhood laundromat is run by a cranky, chain-smoking old woman. Let’s call her chimney woman. She is visited frequently her chain smoking husband and his buddies. There is a sign on every single wall warning parents that children are not allowed to play in the laundromat. A small toddler laughing and eating his happy meal was endlessly scowled at by the old people surrounded by the cloud of their own smoke. Although chimney woman gave me the traditional southern greeting of a silent grin and nod, she greeted the olive skinned woman who came in after me with a glare. The laundromat is not the happy musical of John Travolta’s dreams.
The change machine hates your dollars and no matter how much you smooth the wrinkles from the bills, you will still end up running to the grocery next door for quarters. In my efforts to time laundromat visits with naps so that I wouldn’t upset chimney woman, I ended up drying a load of jeans and a load of delicates on Saturday. If you’ve ever been to a laundromat, you know that Saturday is guy’s laundry day. They bring their laundry in black plastic trash bags and leave with their clean clothes in those exact same bags. Some of them use clorox instead of detergent and none of them use fabric softener. They spend their waiting time staring at each other’s car engines or staring at the only housewife stupid enough to be there on guy day. I watched Shaun kill his zombie mother and pretended that the underwear I was folding wasn’t entertaining the bored guys.
I’m not visiting the laundromat this week. A local blogger/twitterer connected us with someone who was getting rid of an old dryer. A working dryer is better than seven cents from Google Adsense any day. I love bloggers.