The Laundry Room

As I mentioned in a previous post, our washing machine (actually the laundry tub) overflowed three times last week. And, being March, it’s muddy and Otis ran around the laundry room with muddy paws before he had a bath(s) in the laundry tub. We also store our luggage in the laundry room and having just returned from vacation, the luggage needed storage. Before I put the luggage in the cubby under the stairs, however, I decided to pull out ALL the luggage and backpacks and free totes, hoping that one might contain my lost sunglasses, rendering them found. What I am warming up to is that our laundry room resembled a war zone.

All week I plotted my attack, knowing it best to wait until Jim could supervise Otis. No telling what Otis could get into while I was distracted with the laundry room.

Today was D-Day. And let me assure you, I have less to fear from the coronavirus than from what was lurking in the laundry room…

I won’t detail the mold. It is distasteful and is now vanquished. But I WILL discuss some of the other cleaning challenges.

First, the evidence of my good intentions:

  • Three full and one half-full bottle of Murphy’s Oil Soap
  • Three cans of Pledge, one of which had corroded, reminding me of Chernobyl
  • Three bottles of hydrogen peroxide

Those were exact duplicates. If I were to categorize by function, the duplications abound. A couple of spray bottles of degreaser (not sure that I have EVER used a degreaser. What does one degrease?) Several — and I mean several — different variants of products to clean and shine the wood in your life (and this is in addition to the Murphy’s Oil Soap and the Pledge). Lots of rug cleaning items. Bathroom cleaning items.

Next I spot the specialized tools.. The mismatched rubber gloves. The squeegee for the shower door (since the kids have moved out, we rarely use the shower with the shower door and have never even been tempted to squeegee it) and the blind cleaner. I can assure you I have never used this to clean blinds. Never.

I move on.

Our lightbulb collection has overgrown its storage receptacle. All different varieties, which is good, because who the hell know what bulb goes where anymore? Lightbulbs confound me. It used to be so easy. You need a 60 watt, 75 watt, or a 3-way. You go to the store, see the white package with the accordion insert, check the wattage, and you’re good to go. But now, where to start? I turn off lights when I leave a room, not to save the planet, but to save me a trip to the light bulb aisle.

Overwhelmed by the duplicative cleaning supplies and confounding light bulbs, I pivot back to the luggage and decide a sensible approach is to store all duffel bags in the mother of all duffel bags — the biggest and bestest one (and adorned with Jim’s initials no less). Alas, it smells. I report this to Jim, reluctantly, because I am thinking that I can do a little treatment, but it may well be that the initialed bag is headed for the garbage. Jim shakes his head knowingly. “Yeah I think one of the kids borrowed it and threw up in it.”

What???? So, so many questions!!

  • First of all, why would someone throw up in a borrowed duffle bag? And then return it
  • Secondly, if the duffel smelled like vomit, why would Jim store it for later use?

I ask Jim why he believes someone puked in his initialed bag. His proof is scanty. I wipe it down with white vinegar, wishing what it really needed was a couple of bottles of Murphys Oil Soap, scrubbed in with a blind cleaner, with a chaser of degreaser. The jury is out on whether the initialed bag will remain in our fleet of travel bags.

After hours of diligent effort, I grow weary. I scramble and organize shit and duplications of shit I will never use, just so I can get to the final act — scrubbing the floor.

Done.

2 thoughts on “The Laundry Room

  1. I think Jim bought the degreaser, it sounds like a make thing.
    Throw the initialed bag away, he will never miss it, you will never stop thinking of vomit.
    I am with you on the light bulbs, it is so intimidating to buy them now, I fear asking questions because of the pity looks I would get.
    You scrubbed the floor?? Is that more laborious than mopping, it sounds like it. Was it worth it?

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