I am a domestic terrorist on laundry day

The Itinerary

Wake up and determine if the weather will be good for hanging out laundry between 10am and 4pm.

I am a meteorologist.

You know 10am is when the backyard starts getting good sun, and by 4pm things will have warmed up as much as they’re going to and you’ll be getting busy putting dinner together and might forget if they have to stay up much longer.

I am a sunflower.

Pull the dirty clothes out of the hampers and pile them on the bedroom floor.

I am a crane.

Sort the stinkies into piles by type: mine, hers, sheets, towels, delicates (bras usually, and fancy panties unusually).

I am an assayer.

Evaluate the size of the piles. If there are two that are too small, they should be combined, but only if they are of similar enough colors and materials. If any too large, they should they be split into two smaller (but not too small) loads.

I am a lawyer.

Find a laundry basket.

I am a skip tracer.

Decide that clothing should be washed and dried first, because if for some reason you were to wash only one load this week, clothing would be the first you’d need, and the first you’d miss if it weren’t done.

I am an actuary.

Pile it the dirty clothes into the laundry basket.

I am a front end loader.

Don’t forget to balance the delicates on top, because they’ll be the true first load, since they wash quickly and get put on the drying rack indoors, not on the airer in the backyard.

I am a juggler.

Hoist the laundry basket and carry it down a flight of stairs.

I am a forklift.

Locate the special detergent used for the delicates and put the right amount into the washer.

I am a chemist.

Make sure the Load Size Selector is set to “extra small” and the Water Temperature knob is turned to “warm.”

I am a conservationist.

Close the hooks on each of the bras so they won’t catch on themselves or each other while being agitated and spun.

I am a quality control supervisor

Turn the Wash Cycle knob to “hand washables” so these delicates will get the gentlest wash possible.

I am a nanny.

Pull out the knob to start the cycle.

I am a NASA engineer.

Close the lid.

I am a mortician.

Go feed the dog and make yourself a cup of coffee.

I am a waitress.

Check back in about 20 minutes so you don’t hold up getting the next load started.

I am an assembly line foreman.

Find the indoor drying rack.

I am an excavator.

Transform the folded drying rack by flipping the top around so that it will stand independently.

I am an origamist.

Pull out each wet piece from the washer, laying it out on the drying rack so that no two pieces overlap.

I am a bricklayer.

Find the regular detergent for the next load, and dump a cupful into the washer.

I am a perfumer.

Lift all the dirty clothes into the washer, making sure to distribute them evenly to prevent an unbalanced, knocking load.

I am a grader.

Change the Load Size Selector to “large” and the Water Temperature back to “cold.”

I am an environmental engineer.

Pull out the knob to start the cycle, sloshing water into the tub, and close the lid.

I am a flood control officer.

Close the door to KK’s office, so the laundry sounds won’t interfere with her concentration or conference calls.

I am acoustical engineer.

Check back in about 20 minutes to see if the load has finished.

I am a clock.

Transfer the damp clothes from the washing machine to the laundry basket.

I am a crane again.

Tie on your clothespin apron and find some shoes to slip on.

I am a  stylist.

Hoist the basket of damp clothes, now heavier because of the dampness, and haul it out halfway across the backyard.

I am a semi-truck.

Open out the airer, making sure not to catch any of the cords over the arms.

I am a rigger.

Start pulling clothes out the basket, one at a time.

I am a claw crane game.

Check that each piece of clothing is turned right side out, and if it isn’t, turn it right side out before hanging it up, because it will be harder to turn it after it dries and stiffens.

 I am a tanner.

But before you hang it up, give each piece a shake to knock out any of the wrinkles that may have developed from sitting in the washer or the basket.

I am a wetworker.

As you’re choosing pieces, prioritize the panties, shirts, and shorts over the pants and dresses, as the smallest pieces need to go on the innermost/lowest cords and the longer pieces need to go farther out on the higher cords, so they won’t drag the ground and get dirty.

I am a triage nurse.

Pin each (right-side-out, shaken, appropriately-sized) piece to the line, making sure to catch it along a shoulder seam or waistband to minimize sagging and bagging.

I am a tailor.

Decide that tank top straps are too likely to stretch, so pin them at the bottoms of the armholes or, turned upside down, with the hem at the top.

I am a problem solver.

Get feasted on by mosquitos, no matter how much repellent you apply.

I am a filling station.

Continue choosing, turning, shaking, and pinning until the basket is empty.

I am a bonobo.

Rotate the airer so that the sides with the largest and darkest clothes get as much as possible of the sun that’s starting to hit the backyard.

I am a solar power expert.

Set the empty laundry basket back inside, and leave your clothespin apron in it, since you’ll need to use them in concert in a few hours to take down the dry clothes.

I am a storage expert.

In a few hours, touch a few of the clothes to see if they are dry, both in the thinnest/flattest parts  (like shirt sleeves and pants legs) and in the thicker parts (like waistbands and crotches).

I am a biomonitor.

Decide that they need another hour or two to get dry enough to take down.

I am a hydrologist.

In an hour or so, put your apron and shoes back on.

I am a psychiatric nurse.

Take the empty laundry basket outside to the airer.

I am a carrier pigeon.

Unpin each pair of your pants, and give them another shake before folding and placing them in a stack on one side the basket.

I am a packer.

Rotate the airer to reach the clothes on the next section of line.

I am a turnstile operator.

Unpin each pair of her pants, giving it the same shake and fold treatment before placing it in the other side of the basket. Ditto her dresses.

Rotate the airer to reach the clothes on the next section of line.

Unpin each of your shirts, shaking and folding before adding it to your stack in the basket.

Rotate the airer to reach the clothes on the next section of line.

Unpin each of her shirts; shake, fold, basket.

Rotate the airer to reach the clothes on the next section of line.

Unpin any shorts or skirts you come across and shake, fold, basket.

Rotate the airer to reach the clothes on the next section of line.

Swat a few mosquitoes as a futile gesture of supremacy.

I am an executioner.

Unpin any panties or socks. They don’t have to be folded, just shaken and basketed.

Rotate the airer to reach the clothes on the next section of line.

When everything has been removed from the airer, collapse it and replace the cover.

I am a set striker.

Pick up the basket of clean, dry, folded, sorted laundry and haul it inside.

I am a hurrier.

On your way by, pop into the laundry room to pick up the now-dry delicates and put them on top of the basket. This will save you a separate trip downstairs later when you go to get dressed and realize you have no clean bras.

I am a psychic.

Take the entire basket upstairs to the bedroom.

I am a hydraulic lift.

While you consider the now blindingly obvious benefits of a life of nudism, take the rest of the day off by walking the dog, picking up a prescription at the pharmacy, returning some books to the library, making dinner, and unloading and reloading the dishwasher. When you can stand to look at the basket of clean clothes without rising bile, put each type of item into the right person’s right drawers.

I am a handywife.

Now about those dirty sheets and towels…

I am going to pretend that I didn’t hear that.

Now it's your turn

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