Many years ago, too many to recall with any real clarity, my husband did something that annoyed me. I know this won’t come as a shock to anyone who follows me on Twitter, reads this blog regularly, or, say, has been married longer than two years. I can’t even recall what it was he’d done but my reaction to it has stuck with both of us all these years.
I was standing in the hallway of our then apartment and feeding clothes into the dryer. The washer/dryer was one of those stackable combos that are a necessity in small living spaces. This apartment was minute and, strangely, had no linen cupboard. None. I’m not sure what the builders thought. Perhaps I was to have brought my own? In any event, I was in the middle of a tirade, explaining yet again what my husband’s many faults are (lest he forget them for a micro-second), and I said, “I’m sick of it.” To punctuate just how “sick of it” I was, I tried to slam the dryer door shut. It bounced open, nearly braining me. This did nothing to lighten my mood. In fact, it turned into a struggle of “I’m sick of it! Sick of it! SICK OF IT!!!” as the damned thing kept flying back open and requiring another “SICK OF IT” verse. Eventually it stayed shut. Since that day, whenever my husband hears me say “I’m sick of it” he likes to repeat that moment…
In the hallway of our current home, there is a very small linen cupboard. Again, what were the builders thinking? There’s no proper storage anywhere in this place, unless you count the large, creepy attic. The linen cupboard is just two shelves, the top one brushes the ceiling, and I’m short. I tend to just chuck things up there and hope they stay. In addition, there are four people in this family. Four people who need bath towels, beach towels, and sheets for their beds. To say this space is inadequate is a massive understatement. I struggle to get the damn cupboard doors shut every time I open it – and a lot of times when I open it, linens come tumbling down upon me. To close the doors, I repeatedly slam them, hoping they’ll stay closed. The Husband, who has hearing like a bat when it suits him, will shout from somewhere in our stupidly small home, “SICK OF IT, SICK OF IT, SICK OF IT!” This, the other day, irritated me enough that on the nineteenth SICK OF IT, I broke the inside hinge. The only times those doors have shut properly are when I’ve enlisted the help of my tall sons, or my visiting German mother, who folds laundry with military precision.
This defect of the home, coupled with my husband’s installation of my gorgeous, glossy red washer and dryer in the garage, does not endear the space to me. Yes, my washer and dryer are in the garage – a dark, oppressively hot garage with one meager bulb. The bulb’s sole purpose seems to be to lure in moths and other flying insects. It’s almost as if they lurk outside, waiting for the opportunity to fly in and swarm around my head. This lack of a proper laundry room doesn’t go unmentioned. In fact, I like to bring it up whenever my husband passes by: “We should have bought that yellow house! It had a laundry room… or the pink palace! It had a laundry room with A GODDAMN SCREENED WINDOW AND A LAUNDRY CHUTE!”
I need to remind you at this juncture to not feel sorry for my husband. He’s a man. In fact, he’s a man who saw fit to incorrectly install the glossy red washer and dryer in the garage under the lone bulb. Yes, incorrectly. You see, they’re side-by-side. This, for those of you who don’t do laundry, means you open the door of the washer and basically toss the wet items directly and easily into the dryer, which is so conveniently situated. Only, in my case, I load everything into a basket, close the washer door, pick up the basket, move over, put it down, open the dryer door and start throwing items in. My husband tends to avoid me during laundry times because of the laundry room previously mentioned, and because I shout, “THEY’RE SUPPOSED TO BE SIDE-BY-SIDE! THAT’S WHY THEY’RE CALLED SIDE-BY-SIDE! EVERYONE ELSE HAS THEM SIDE-BY-SIDE!!!” The space the appliances were installed in is small and the washer and dryer are big. So big that to place them the way they’re meant to go, you couldn’t open the door to enter our house. Therefore, they had to be placed further in the garage. This means the cords and hoses are stretched to their limit, and the dryer was placed opposite the washer, as it didn’t require water hoses. Yes, you can take the door off the dryer and switch which side it opens from but you can’t move the door on the washer. Ergo, the doors don’t match up and I DON’T HAVE A GODDAMN SIDE-BY-SIDE!
Is it wrong to ask that my next home have a large linen cupboard that doesn’t require a step-stool to reach it? Does that make me a bad person? And could it also have a laundry room that holds my washer and dryer SIDE-BY-SIDE and keeps me free of insect molestations? I don’t think I’m asking too much here, folks. Or how about a front gate that hasn’t rusted off its hinges and is hanging in a haunted house style fashion? Or a circuit breaker that doesn’t hate my hair dryer so much I need to dry my hair in spurts of 20 seconds because anything longer than that short-circuits the entire west-side of the house? I won’t get into the rest of the home’s defects. It’s old and we’re lucky to have it. That said, one day…
I hear A-Rod’s a single man again. I wonder how he’d feel about taking me and my linens away from here? I bet he’s got great linen cupboards… Swoon.