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Sunday, January 07, 2007


So come along now. Humour me for a moment. How many times do you change your clothes in any 24 hour period? Yes, I know that there might be a few variables in there. Depends upon which day you’re talking about because Wednesday is gym day. [translation = attend ‘work –out’ place] On Thursdays you go to see a film. On Friday you might meet a few pals in the evening. Perhaps, if it’s Winter, you forget your umbrella. You might experience a downpour. Life is full of little unexpecteds, as well as plans, that mean a change of clothes may be needed.

Laundry occupies more of my life than I anticipated. It's hard not to notice, as it's stacked in heaps all over the house. I have a tendency to complain about this job a good deal. I am very good at it, complaining that is, not laundry. When it comes to moaning, I have a head start on my contemporaries, because Brits are of a pessimistic nature. Where your American glass is half full, ours is definitely half empty. Indeed somebody probably stole the contents. Furthermore, when we find out who that somebody was, we’ll remove their outer clothing, put itching powder in their underwear, and tie them to a lamppost. I suspect this kind of behaviour hasn’t spread to America, due to a shortage of lampposts, as itching powder is freely available. I’ve checked. When it comes to prioritizing appropriate punishments, then public humiliation comes pretty high on the list. But I digress.

One average family can produce quite a lot of laundry. If you ignore the matter of wet beds, mop up towels, bath towels and the big stuff, you're still left with considerable quantities of clothing. This is especially so, in Winter where more clothes are worn. Not only more clothes but they bigger ones, ones with a greater surface area due to long sleeves and legs. Socks become a necessity rather than an optional extra. Outer wear, in the form of jackets, coats, gloves and hats, also feature. All these items become dirty.

If they remained on people’s bodies for longer than a nano second, it is just conceivable that they might become dirty on the inside. Fortunately for us, such an occurrence is rare. Instead they become dirty on the outside, often.

This is not because they are particularly naughty, they are only averagely naughty. Indeed it is quite often when they are trying especially hard to be ‘good,’ that they make the most dirt. We have reached the stage of development where occasionally, if I’m very lucky, someone might be persuaded to ‘help.’ Helping is a messy business, mainly due to the inefficiency of physically moving parts of the body, such as arms, legs and hands. On the whole these body parts refuse to act in concert, instead they prefer to work independently from one another, causing no end of chaos, angst and dirt.

Since teaching ‘competence,’ is also an ongoing campaign, the net result is of course, more laundry. This household is an ecological disaster area. If the environmentalists ever discover how much water and soap we use, we’re likely to be deported to some remote island. There again, a remote island might not be too fussy about nudity. I could kill two birds with one cake of soap. Pass me a map somebody.



To my shame I have 2 washing machines and 2 dishwashers, I use the short eco-washes but it is NEVER enough.My child is constantly smearing yoghurt and chocolate and worse still-spit everywhere AND tipping the only thing she will drink-blackcurrant squash!
In the eco-warrior Queen's kitchen you will also find 2 microwaves and a range cooker with 2 ovens.Thankfully I only have 1 tumble dryer which I try very hard not to use too much.
I long for the nice weather so I can once again dry my clothes on the washing line and my children can wear less clothes.If there is a Wall of Shame I'm up there........Sorry World!

Haddayr said...

You really are a marvelous writer. I'm glad I found your blog.

Here's what I want to know: if I move to Britain, not only do I get brown sauce with every meal, people will stop with their endless whinging about how negative and pessimistic I am? I AM *SO* MOVING.

kristina said...

This post also reminds me of why I no longer buy anything whose label says "dry clean only" (= I will never ever wear this----have to do another load, forget about going to the cleaners). Fortunately Charlie's preferred clothes do not vary much: t-shirt (long/short sleeves) and pants (and socks and underwear, though we have ample multiples of these).

Jerry Grasso said...

Hmmmm - me thinks you want more soap on the desert island. Seaweed smells bad after a period of time. More quantities of seaweed than, say, in Aveda products....

Christine said...

Can you believe I didn't even OWN a wash machine until January 2nd of last year?? Until then we did 5 loads of laundry once a week -- pretty much everything we owned. Now I do at least a load every day! But what else would I do with me time, eh?


"Here Is Your War"

Posted, January, 2007


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