Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Adventures in the Laundry Room

How long can a family of seven survive without a dryer?

Seven weeks, so far.

It started with this strange buzzing sound. Which progressed to no heat. And seven hours to air dry clothing. No thanks, I don't really want that utility bill. I know about these things, I work for the local power company. My wonderful dad came over to look at it. He glared at it and it started to work again. Then quit as soon as he left. He came back four weeks later and declared it dead: the part cost more than a new dryer. Lamesauce.

In case you're wondering? It was parts 11-20 that failed. Curse you, 11-20!


Well, line drying, of course. So handy-me puts up a clothes line in the backyard. Back & forth from deck to fence three times. About 60 feet of drying space. That should do the trick.


First of all, one load of towels takes two of the three lines, and won't be dry in time for the next load to be hung. So, add hanging wet towels from the deck railing. Hanging things on hangers to dry from the handy closet bar in the laundry room, and in every door frame of the house. Some things have to lay flat to dry, or they risk becoming so misshapen that they more closely resemble somthing Vishnu could wear. They're on the couches in the living room. More clothes hanging on the stair banister in the living room. More clothes drying flat on the downstairs couch in Luke Skywalker's room, and the upstairs couches in the family room.

Frankly it was starting to look like Kohl's blew up or something. Or more like DI, looking at our clothing. And the humidity made me think I was revisiting my childhood encounter with Ginger.

This plan did not work. Things happened to the hanging laundry. Rain. Wind. Bird poop. Ever dried off after a hot relaxing shower with a towel washed in hard water and hung out to dry too long? I guess towels that burlap-esque and crispy are good for exfoliating, right? Hand me that blow dryer instead, would you?

Then I made a discovery. An amazing wonderful discovery. Out of desperation, I hauled five baskets of wet laundry to the nearest laundromat. Spread them all out across a wall of dryers, and started dropping quarters in. Only to find (after dropping in two dollars worth of quarters) that this laundromat offers FREE DRYING. You heard it, sisters, free drying. The catch? Between the hours of 5am and 3pm Monday thru Thursday.

It could be worse, you know.

At least I didn't end up as part of someones PSA on dryer safety, like the poor sap who owned the dryer above.

So until further notice, you know where to find me. Monday thru Thursday at 5am at least.


Mary Q Contrarie said...

If it is taking a really long time to air dry here are a couple suggestions. Run your clothes through the spin cycle again in your washer the more water you get out before trying to dry the better off you will be. This is a good habit even if you are using the dryer because clothes will dry faster. Also if it is really humid outside dry inside on a clothes drying rack under a ceiling fan or near a register...

Julie said...

Great ideas. I already have made a habit of the second spin cycle, it saves about 20 minutes of dryer time. No problem with humidity, here - the opposite is true. It's like the clothes are "flash fried" when I hang them outside. I hang everything where there is good airflow, it's just the sheer number of items that need to be dried that's getting me down. I'm coming up on a little free time and will be able to starting hunting for a new dryer finally! WOO HOO!