I live in a four-storey apartment building. There are six apartments on each floor. That’s a lot of people. And a lot of dirty laundry.
Not the Michael Jackson kind of dirty laundry. My building is more like a retirement home than Neverland Ranch. I’m talking about dirty clothes.
To deal with all this dirty laundry, my building has exactly one washer and one dryer. It gets weirder. There is a sign-up sheet to use the washer and dryer. Everyone in the building is allowed to pick a time to do laundry. Everyone except me.
This is because I am the only renter in the building. Everyone else owns their apartment. I live in the caretaker’s suite. [Note: I’m not actually the caretaker. He left when they contracted out his services. Instead of selling his apartment, they decided to rent it for some extra money.]
I am only allowed to do laundry during “free time” on the weekend. The apartment owners actually voted on this at a meeting.
In theory, this is a good arrangement. I don’t get home until late in the evening during the week, which means I don’t have time to do laundry until the weekend anyway. The problem is, everyone else in the building puts off doing laundry until the weekend too. Which doesn’t really make sense considering most of them are retired and over the age of 70.
So every weekend there is a battle for the washer and dryer, which pisses me off because I am only allowed to use the stupid things on the weekend and everyone else can use them any day of the week.
I have devised a few strategies to deal with this. One is to pile four loads of laundry in front of the washer as a blockade. It’s kind of passive aggressive but I find it gets the point (“back off!”) across.
Another strategy is to do laundry just once a month. Which helps increase the size of the blockade described in strategy one (see above).
It can get pretty vicious. Last weekend, I put a load of laundry in the dryer. An hour later, I returned to put more money in the machine only to find someone had taken my damp sheets out of the dryer and put their own laundry in. With my quarters!
I was so mad that I stopped the dryer and took out their soaking wet laundry (I have never touched so many pairs of grey socks and white briefs in my life) and put my sheets back in. Then I ran back upstairs to my apartment before they caught me.
Later that night, as I was relaxing on the couch in my clean pajamas under a clean blanket, happy the laundry drama was over for another month, I managed to spill a bowl of chili all over myself. I trudged back down to the laundry room.
Of course, somebody else was using the washer and dryer. And of course, it was late Sunday night, which means I can’t actually wash the stuff until next weekend. I’d move but the rent is cheap and the neighbours are hard of hearing.
If you have any creative solutions to end the weekly laundry drama, I’d love to hear them.