Sunday, October 17, 2004

Laundromat Lament

I think I have discovered the most depressing, forlorn place in the universe. A place that not only has Time forgot, but wouldn’t get caught dead in in the first place~ the neighborhood Laundromat!

I am sure that the same people I encounter there every weekend have been there since the beginning of time. The same old woman fussing with the coin slot on the Spin & Rinse washer, the same student girl folding her panties in the further corner of the building, and the same lecherous old man unashamedly ogling her panties from across the rows of $1 dryers. I don’t even think he does his laundry here!

Initially when I made the decision to start frequenting the local ‘Lake/Carleton Coin Laundro-Village', I had romantic notions of meeting chic Mia Farrow or Diane Keaton types, or any other foxy I-used-to-date-Woody-trendy-style of intellectually casual beauties, all just itching in their hair bandana’s for witty repartee with some humorous, cultured stranger to pass the lonely Rinse & Spin cycles away with.

What I got instead was “Attack of the Zombie Sasquatches”. The Laundromat is the staging area for every nicotine-stained, frizzy-haired, droopy-boobed, phlegm hacking, She-Beast with the breeding of a carnival barker within a two mile radius. What was I thinking? I've seen more attractive people at Ministry concerts.

My favorite is the guy who is always sitting outside the only bathroom in the Laundromat muttering to himself in what is either a dead Biblical language of some sort, or he is calculating out complex mathematical equations to himself while he listens to somebody peeing through the wafer-thin bathroom door. Whatever the case, he makes even Gary Busey seem well adjusted. I'm sure he' got quite a story though, wouldn't you think? Maybe one day I will see his face on the cover of one the waiting area magazines as the world's newest business success having discovered an alternative form of clean energy by harnessing the power of missing socks. Maybe I should offer to sort his socks next time.

I also now believe that Laundromats worldwide are involved in a global conspiracy to ensure that ‘The Way It Is’ by Bruce Horsnby is played at least once every hour over the in-house stereo systems. This particular tune takes on a whole other realm of depressing while you’re trying to sort and fold out our delicates with mindless indifference.

"That's just the way it is
Some things will never change
That's just the way it is
But don't you believe them"

Fuck! Some things had better change because I’d not going to spend the rest of my weekends washing my personal soilables in a friggin’ laundromat in full view of the public eye! There’s nothing quite like trying to conceal your skid-marked underwear from the prying eyes of all the lonely single mom’s peering out from behind a decade old ‘Home & Garden’ magazine. “He, he, he…I’m a painter”. But then again, maybe if I wasn’t “standing here in line, marking time, and waiting for the welfare dime” then I’d be out working and be able to buy my own fucking washer and dryer and I wouldn’t have to be getting all weepy-eyed over Bruce Hornsby songs in a shithole that reeks of Javex.

Also while I’m on the topic of ambiance, who do you think is responsible for selecting all the reading material available on the end table in the waiting area? Inevitably, such a plethora of outdated periodicals will include ‘Time’, ‘Newsweek’, ‘Forbes’, and maybe even a ‘Fortune 500’ thrown in for good measure. Sure, there’s the preferred reading list of your average Laundromat frequenter. I’m sure all the local homeless and destitute immediately race over after panhandling enough pennies to buy a Grande Caffé Mocha at the Starbucks across the street in order to be the first to leaf through the new May, 1998 issue of ‘Industrial Physicist Monthly’ on the coffee-ringed table at ‘Sammy’s Soak & Suds’.


Blogger JRF said...

First there is a comment, then there is no comment, then there is. First there is a comment, then there is no comment, then there is . . .

Jesus Christ on a Shish-Kabob! Now I know what Donovan was talking about!

Two times now I've posted reponses to this entry, only to see them disappear . . . I won't even attempt to reproduce what I've said (twice now) because I'm certain each post gets serially less amusing as I see the inspiration for it fade in the distance . . .

Probably no reason to worry yourself . . . I've been having some serious problems with my box lately . . .


8:18 PM  

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