Wednesday, November 28, 2007

Laundry lessons

This morning, when I was planning on picking up the laundry I had dropped off at the nice Chinese laundromat around the corner, I realized I had lost my receipt. I remembered the price, $20.20, both because it was unusually expensive and because it reminded me of how I used to spend Friday nights. I searched around the apartment, but I could not find that stupid slip. Immediately the nervous old woman inside of me launched into action. "Do you think they'll let me pick up my clothes?" I said to L, knitting my hands together worriedly. "Of course," she said. "What if someone finds the receipt and steals my clothes?" I whimpered. "That's not going to happen," she said.

But it might happen, I thought as she turned away. As I walked to the subway, dejected, I tried to make a mental inventory of my clothes at the cleaners -- basically everything I own, plus assorted bedding. I know those Chinese ladies pretty well, but would they stop a potential thief from handing over my receipt and receiving all of my clothes, valued in the tens of dollars?

Immediately after class ended this afternoon I went to the laundromat. "I DON'T HAVE MY RECEIPT," I said. I spoke loudly, since they're not native English speakers. I looked around for my white mesh bag, and the nice lady pulled it down and brought it to me. "It's heavy," she said. The bag looked familiar, but something wasn't right. "THIS ISN'T MINE," I said helpfully. Suddenly it clicked in my head. "THIS IS MY WIFE'S, IT'S NOT MINE," I explained. "I WANT MINE." With relief I located my bag, with my clothes, with the proper price ($20.20), safe for me to retrieve before some receipt-wielding thief rushed in and caused some sort of wash & fold dilemma. Thank God. "OK, I'M ALL SET," I said, indicating that the situation had been resolved.

The nice lady was looking at me. "I'LL TAKE MY BAG," I said. She looked at me still. Then something clicked in my head. "YOU KNOW WHAT? WHY DON'T I JUST TAKE BOTH BAGS, MINE AND MY WIFE'S."

The nice lady nodded. "Good boy," she said. "Good boy."


And on a completely unrelated note, this happens to be my 250th post on ol' Clarity. Not too bad.

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