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Lint Trap

Joined: 1/1/2013
Posts: 4

Unlike the men in my household I am careful with laundry. I sort my washables into light and dark, and today the dark pile is bigger so that is what I load into the machine. Normally I check in case husband or son might have thrown a few light T-shirts or dark pants in, but it’s late in the day and I haven’t seen or heard anyone else near the machines all day. So it’s upend the hamper and into the depths drop jeans, corduruoys, favourite navy T-shirt, socks. . . all dark, all safe for this load of laundry. Should be done, and dried, and folded in no time.
An hour later I reach in and pull a pair of denim jeans up and out. Not quite sure what I am looking at. The texture is all wrong. Like someone threw handfuls of snow at the jeans, or sprinkled a box of soapflakes over them. But it would have to be multi-coloured snow, variegated soapflakes. Speckles of red and green and blue obscure much of the denim.
Right away I figure I have left a kleenex in the pocket of the jeans. I don’t stop to question where such a huge colourful kleenex might have come from, one big enough to cover a whole pair of pants. but I reach the conclusion from my only previous experience with “fluffy laundry”. I drop the jeans into the hamper and reach into the washing machine. Brown corduruoys. Well mostly brown. Sort of mottled. Techni-coloured fuzzy mottled.
Pulling faster I remove every piece of clothing from the machine. A dinner napkin I decide. A dinner napkin has been left in a pocket. One with lots of colours. But how big does a dinner napkin have to be to coat an entire load of laundry? When have we used red, blue and green dinner napkins, gigantic or not?
It’s cold outside and the snow is drifted to the kitchen door, but one by one I take the pieces and shake them out. The sun has not set so the results are quite spectacular. We are the owners of the most colourful snowdrift this side of the West Back Line. In fact, this could be the most colourful snowdrift in all of Grey Highlands. The doorstep is about half a cup short of being a papier-mache sculpture.
What has caused this mishap?A roadmap? A brochure? What is made of paper, has several colours and is small enough to get into the laundry yet big enough to cover the whole load in fuzz? And then I recall what I did just before the laundry. I gathered newspapers off the top shelf to bundle for re-cycling. What is made of paper, has several colours . . . and I have it! Grocery flyers, made of newsprint. Very colourful.
How I long for a Laundry 911. I imagine taking wet sponges to each piece of laundry and removing the lint that way. A good hour’s work I expect. Instead I throw it all in the dryer, wary of possible fire hazards.
It is dark long before I finish. I have emptied the lint trap six times. Could have made a rug out of this stuff. Does it expand when it dries? I congratulate myself on getting through the small household emergency and look forward to a peaceful evening.
I am sweeping up the remaining bits of paper from the kitchen floor when I hear the cat being sick on the basement stairs. Peaceful evening . . . hah! And much later, I tell Carl “I just wrote an essay about this.” He reaches a hand towards me: “Did you include the fuzz in your hair?”
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Comment by warren

Joined: 6/22/2011
Posts: 283
Ahhh, the joys of laundry. I can't count the times that tissues, gum and the like found their way into the washer, but you got me with the colored flyer. OK, I did wash my Chemistry lab book once, but I was a student. That shouldn't count, right?

Loved your story. Welcome to the Stage of Life.
Posted: Thursday, January 3, 2013 7:34:22 PM
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Comment by DarkStar49

Joined: 5/28/2009
Posts: 335
Awesome essay! Gave me my chuckle for the night! Look forward to more colorful tales!
- Greg Phillips
Editor, Stage Of Life
Posted: Saturday, January 5, 2013 4:36:51 AM
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Comment by sheila.l.smith.7

Joined: 1/1/2013
Posts: 4
Hi Greg,
So glad you liked it. I have a couple of dozen unpublished ones floating around and don't feel much like an author anymore. I miss doing readings and hearing people laugh. So I really appreciate it whenever a reader of any of my work comments as you did. Thanks.
Posted: Wednesday, January 9, 2013 5:05:58 PM
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