Today I want to talk about something I hate. I guess most people who read this post will agree with me.
I’m talking about washing clothes and all the pain that involves.
As an equal partner in a relationship, I am keen not to inflict the pain of washing on Mrs PM, although if she were to volunteer to take on the responsibility of all aspects of keeping our clothes clean, I would gladly hand it over and make her sign her name in blood to ensure that I never have to do it again.
Alas, that is not to be and on a regular basis I am called upon to attack this tedious task with fake enthusiasm.
Some male readers will have no clue what I am talking about.
One guy I used to know claimed that the laundry basket was a miracle of modern science.
“Why?” asked a particularly ferocious woman who worked with us.
“Every day I put my dirty clothes in the laundry basket and, hey presto, a few days later they are magically transformed ; I open my wardrobe and there they are, lovely and clean and pressed.”
I thought the woman was going to explode in rage.
Each stage of washing clothes is a pain in the arse, to put it bluntly; even something as mundane as putting them in the washing machine.
When I first started washing my clothes as a student, I had many mishaps, like the brand new jeans I bought that turned my best white shirt into various shades of blue. I wouldn’t have minded but it wasn’t a uniform distribution of colour; my crisp white shirt had huge blotches of blue of varying intensity making it impossible to wear without looking like a mad goon.
And this has happened repeatedly.
On another occasion, a rogue red sock somehow found its way into a basket full of white clothes and rampaged through them in the washing machine, freely distributing its red colour randomly amongst the perfect white cloth. When I opened the washing machine it looked like all of my whites had been murdered in a horrific bloodbath.
All of this means that I have to painstakingly sort all of the clothes out into piles to make sure that nothing is ruined by murderous colours.
And that brings me to the next point – sorting through shreddies. This is not a pleasant experience even when the shreddies are your own. Underwear is nasty – but my dirty socks are dangerous creatures that need to be handled with care.
The biological suit I had to buy cost me a fortune.
When the washing machine has done its job, unloading it is a pain. The washing machine can mutate your clothes. I’ve already mentioned inadvertently dying your best whites – but sometimes the machine has another couple of surprises. A slight error can cause your clothes to shrink to the point where they are too small for a cat, or to grow so that the only creature they would fit is a deformed troll. Again, washing machines tend to favour new and expensive clothes for this unscheduled punishment.
Living in the UK makes drying clothes difficult because you never know when it will rain. In the summer you can hang out the washing and then the next minute, a thunderstorm will appear and completely soak you newly washed laundry with dirty rain.
If it doesn’t rain, Mother Nature has other ways of ruining your efforts; birds can still crap all over your nice clean shirt, or, if you haven’t pegged up the washing properly, your beautiful clean clothes can end up in the dirt, or resting on a nice fresh pile of cat shit.
And the final operation is ironing, something that I hate with a passion. In the past, I have burned shirts and burned myself. Ironing is a punishment that I am convinced Satan will impose upon me if I end up meeting him in the afterlife.
“You are sentenced to iron my shreddies for the rest of eternity!”
Anyway, I’d like to finish on a lighter note as I am sure that I have invoked horrific laundry related episodes in your life. I apologise for that, dear reader.
Back in 1976, a song entered the UK charts that was so dreadful it was hilarious. I am convinced to this day it was totally tongue in cheek.
It has the greatest laundry lyrics in the world ever:
She was sharing her spin dryer with a guy in a tie-dye
When she saw my reflection in the chrome
I knew that she'd seen me 'cause she dropped her bikini
The one that I got her in Rome.
Little does she know that I know that she knows
That I know she's two-timin' me
Little does she know that I know that she knows
That I know she's cheatin' on me
When she finished her laundry she was all in a quandary
And made for the street like a hare
Her escape was so urgent, she forgot her detergent
And dropped all her clean underwear
The song is called “Little Does She Know” by the Kursaal Flyers.
There is something the singer can console himself with – at least his two-timing girlfriend did her own laundry.