Sunday, January 17, 2010

Sunday is suds day

And like Jeff Somers, the washeteria here on my block is full of some very very novel worthy characters.

Jeff must patronize the only Sudsatopia that doesn't have cell service cause he missed "The Narrator" who talks on her phone while washing, drying, folding, dropping, refolding, packing, toting, returning, searching, finding, repacking, leaving. Subject of this conversation is essentially twitter fodder: "what I am doing right now."

It's enough to make me swill Purex.

For those of you who think we have lost all our marbles to not have a washing machine and a dryer, I should tell you this: our lease precludes them. And it's a pretty common provision in rental leases here in New York.

So much so that people who do buy and install them have the appliances delivered in boxes marked "TV sets" or "large box o'something else" AND having the delivery guys remove the packing boxes rather than leave them for the building's recycling pickup.

I love this city, I do, and the proof is that I'm willing to put up with this.

So, if you own a washer and dryer, please go pat them and croon words of love ... then invite me over.

35 comments:

Richmond Writer said...

In Oct. 2005 on critter.org I read a short story about the Sock Fairy in a laundry mat. I wish I had kept her name because it was an incredible story, wonderfully plotted, and with nice character development and growth.

Ever since then I have been unable to picture a laundry mat without thinking of her sock fairy story. She couldn't figure out who to send it to because it didn't match any magazine (and she was right about that) yet I keep thinking the world lost a good story. It was worth sharing but the rules for critter.org is that you promise not to share. I hope she eventually got it published.

Chumplet - Sandra Cormier said...

I once opened the back panel of our washer and discovered it was manufactured in 1967. I bought it secondhand about 25 years ago.

The dryer's been replaced 3 times.

Malia Sutton said...

She must have a twin sister who goes to Gramercy Park on Sunday afternoons.

Aimee LS said...

Come to New Zealand! We have washers and Dryers AND clotheslines in our backyards. Not a laundermat to be seen.

Then again, nary a major publisher either....

Philangelus said...

Come on over! I've got a high capacity washer and I do two loads a day on average. I won't even notice another few loads.

Amanda J. said...

Well at least now I know not to expect a washer or dryer if/when I move to New York after graduation haha.

Lauren said...

Janet, get your ass over here. I have not only a beautiful, large washer and equally beautiful and large dryer, but they are located in a room of their own with cabinets, closets, drawers, an overhead rod with more than enough good (not wire) hangers, and a couple of shelves for all your laundry accessories. Then there's the entertaining book, The Clothesline, to browse through if you like.

Your only problem is you gotta come to Santa Barbara, California.

Gina Black said...

Bernice and Rocky and I are on a first name basis and I do love them truly. Will give them your regards.

Abby said...

New York has turned me into a grownup. When I was a carefree college student, when I thought about the big purchases I would someday make, I dreamed of cars, of travel, of jewelry. But now? My dreams are filled with washing machines, dryers, and even...dishwashers.

Jean said...

I couldn't make it without my washer & dryer close by. Course with 3 kids and hubby, we do laundry every day. Sigh.

Furious D said...

I own a matching washer dryer set by LG. Nicest, most idiot proof laundry experience I've ever had.

Jealous?

Back in my wretched Torontonian days, I spent 6 years using a laundry room in my apartment building, which was an adventure in itself. Especially when you find the occasional extra pair of underwear among your clothes when you take them out of the dryer.

Eeeewwww...

Sarah said...

I remember the first time I moved into a rental that had a tiny stacked washer/dryer.

I almost kissed them right there in front of the rather reserved woman giving me the tour.

Indigo said...

I am truly and utterly fascinated by the city. I have all the wilderness I could want here in upstate NY. Alas there is nothing like the visual explosion to capture the senses like NYC. I need to visit and explore the sights more often. (Hugs)Indigo

P.S. I'll think of you fondly while I use my washer and dryer.

Jean said...

When I lived in NYC, I was fortunate to usually avoid the laundry room nightmares (but cell phones were just coming into vogue...). Sunday afternoon, surprisingly, was very quiet in our laundry room, which, conveniently was at the bottom of one flight of stairs from my 2nd floor apt.

Sean Patrick Reardon said...

"it isn’t long before a Lord of the Flies scenario erupts"

Walking into the laundromat with a pig's head on a stick might free up a few washers and dryers.

Terry Towery said...

Personally, I've found hanging out in the washeteria is one of the best places to observe people. "Real" people.

Starbucks? Mostly wannabe writers watching other wannabe writers.

Well. Okay. Bars, too. ;)

The Gerlings said...

Janet, I'm closer than Lauren.

Any time you're down the Atlanta way feel free to drop by. The laundry room is large enough to fit shelves and a full bedroom suite if you really want to spend some quality time with the washer and dryer.

Back in college I'd trade free meals to anyone who would take my laundry with theirs to the laundry mat. For two years I managed to dodge the mat :o)

Loretta Ross said...

Several years ago I was doing laundry at the local coin-op and attempting to chat with a couple of Latino gentlemen who were travelling and had stopped to do their wash. A friend who had been to South America had been telling me fantastic stories about the snakes down there ("thirty feet long, I tell ya! Bigger around than a telephone pole! Longer than a Volkswagon bus!") Doubting his accuracy, I attempted to get them to either verify or debunk the claims.

A word to the wise: If you are talking to someone who is not fluent in your language and whose language you do not speak at all, (and especially if you must supplement your words with gestures) snakes are a poor choice of subject matter. They wanted me to come back to their hotel room so they could show me. I'm almost certain they misunderstood what I was asking.

DJ Kirkby said...

Laundromats are few and far between here in England. The washing machines over here are really tiny compared to the big top loaders I remember using in Canada.

Josin L. McQuein said...

Brace yourself for a wave of queries that boil down to:

WILL WASH LAUNDRY FOR REPRESENTATION.

(Have Drier, Will Tumble?)

Jennifer said...

The country I live in doesn't really use dryers, though I do have a small washer. I just have to hang everything out to dry. It drove me insane for the first couple of years, back when I actually woke up early in the morning to do it. Then I figured out that it doesn't really *hurt* the laundry to leave it hanging outside overnight if it doesn't dry fast enough. :D

Loretta--your story cracked me up. :D

Margaret Yang said...

I keep a gratitude journal, listing five things that I'm grateful for every day. I mention my washer and dryer a lot. I am not kidding. (I'm frequently grateful for my favorite blogs, too.)

Bernita said...

My mother had a wash tub and a hand wringer.
Believe me, I kiss my washer and dryer every day.

DL Hammons said...

Silly me. From the post title I thought we were going to have a brewsky. :)

kitty said...

I'm flashing on the laundry room scene in Rosemary's Baby. It was in the basement of the Bram/Dakota and creeped me out as much as anything in that movie.

Chris Eldin said...

And I thought I couldn't like you more than I already do...

I LOVE washers and dryers. It wasn't always so.

But when we lived in Dubai, the washers and dryers were soooo tiny (to conserve water and electricity?), and kids had to wear uniforms to school (meaning two outfits per day), and all that sand. The washer and dryer were on literally round the clock. And then when we came back to the States, the washers and dryers were gloriously BIG! One load per day, and I don't even think about it. (Except now, of course, when you make me love them again).

Not too uncommon to find snakes in the dryers in Dubai (and other desert places).

Ummm... You're making me write an Ode to a Washer. Under 750 words.

Happy Suds Day. I'm with you in spirit.

dylan said...

Dear Ms. Reid,

Too bad the Big Apple ain't as civilized as the Big Easy. From a website:

Checkpoint Charlie's, 501 Esplanade, on the border of the Quarter and Faubourg Marigny.
Popular spot, open very late, lots of locals, incredibly diverse variety of live local music acts. There's also a laundromat in the back, so do your laundry while you drink and listen. An OffBeat magazine reporter described the place as so casual that he walked around in his boxers while his laundry was drying ...

dylan

Rachel Menard said...

I feel your pain and have kissed the top of my washer and dryer every weekend since I procured a set in March. My favorite laundromat experience was the time I fell down the stairs trying to carry it all to the car in one trip. Thanks Goodness I had a dirty pile of towels to fall into. If you're ever in New England I'll be happy to share.

steeleweed said...

It could be worse. I once lived in a NYC neighborhood without any laundromats. (Neither you nor I really want to know how they lived).
I took my outerwear to a dry cleaners near my office, purchased new socks and underwear periodically and stuffed the dirty in garbage bags under my bed. When I moved, I had 5 full, huge bags of dirty laundry to dispose of.

lora96 said...

I adore my Kenmore washer and dryer. Got them last spring and do not let a week go by without commenting to my husband that I love them. They were a wedding gift. Who wants another dang vase or set of towels when you could have the thudding lullaby of your jeans drying!

Chumplet - Sandra Cormier said...

We didn't have a washer or dryer in Spain. We hand washed in the tub or sink and hung the items on the balcony to dry.

DebraLSchubert said...

Thank you. From now on, I will do my best to have a completely different relationship with my washer and dryer. I will try not to hate them and wish they would die.

The next time I complain to myself about doing the laundry, I'll remember this post and be grateful for the fact I can walk downstairs in my underwear and do the laundry. (Sorry for the horrifying visual.)

myimaginaryblog said...

It was very hard to find a laundromat when we lived in Amman, Jordan, because, as it turned out, people just pay someone to do their laundry for them. I'm rather surprised that such a system hasn't emerged in New York, but in a way it's also heartening that even (relatively) wealthy Americans wouldn't (usually) impose their dirty unmentionables on someone else. And yet steeleweed's story of his or her solution to that problem seems pretty decadent in its own way.

writeidea said...

I neglect my washer and dryer. All I do is throw in dirty clothes, spin some dials and expect clean ones in return. I'll have to rectify that and croon next time I need clean socks.

You can come use mine. It does mean a trip to Victoria, BC but the flowers are in bloom, the sun is shining and it's quite lovely right now. I won't mention the high wind last night.

Crystal Posey said...

*pat pat* I've been there and done that and worship mine, and my dishwasher.