The 9 People You Encounter At Laundromats
This is the first time in about a decade where I live in an apartment without a washer and dryer. There is a hookup, but I’m too broke to buy a set and too lazy to go through Craigslist. So, the laundromat is now one of my weekly hangouts.
It is not enjoyable.
As I observe my fellow launderers, and wish I made better choices in my life to avoid this wonderfully smelling hell-hole full of laundry basket-cases….I’ve discovered the people you will surely come across at laundromats.
1. The Loudest Family Ever: Maybe the laundromat is considered a stay-cation for these families. Maybe they’ve been kicked out of every other place they try to go together. They roll deep with their minions of kids, dominate the joint and showcase their awful parenting skills with a megaphone. They for some reason, don’t allow their kids to play with the laundromat’s arcade games, or give them toys or books or anything to occupy them–because they enjoy seeing us all suffer.
2. The Young Clueless Single Dude: They nervously survey the scene trying to figure out which is the washer, aimlessly throw their little trash bag of clothes in, and realize they’ve forgotten to add the detergent 7 minutes into the cycle. Then they stand at the little vending machine hoping the attendant will notice his struggle among all the options and just offer to do his laundry for him because he’s so cute and helpless.
3. The Over Achiever: She is the Martha Stewart of clothes cleaning. First, she is not wearing sweats and the ugly shirt that doesn’t smell bad enough to be worn at the laundromat. Like, she’s actually in a cute outfit. She separates colors, whites and textures, looks like a mixologist distributing her collection of detergents into the machines, has a professional grade clothing rack and silk hangers. Watching her fold is like watching an origami expert at work. She even knows how to fold the bottom sheet properly!
4. The Airer of Dirty Laundry: I like to use the time waiting for my clothes to dry to relax, go online, watch TV, etc. But, there’s always a person that has to strike up a conversation. They are normally loud, go on and on about all the crap in their life and may be drunk. I give hints that I’d rather be watching Burn Notice that happens to always be on when I’m there. And I normally would never watch Burn Notice.
5. The Washer Hostage: They look like they haven’t done laundry in about three months. Instead of dumping a load (haha) into the large washer, they precisely distribute small amounts of their clothes into every single washer. I don’t know what the strategy is. Maybe they are so embarassed by their stinky clothes, the strategy is to drive everyone out?
6. The Creeper: Wherever you move, his eyes are on you hoping that a pair of thongs will drop to the floor as you import your clothes into the machine. He lives for that one glimpse of something lacey whirling around in your wash. He is only in the laundromat when it’s empty, of course, and he chooses to do his laundry directly next to you. He puts more quarters in the dryer long after his clothes are finished just to stay and watch you fold. “Ah, so those are the sheets I’m picturing her sleeping naked on”.
7. The Big Dryer Abuser: This is the opposite of The Washer Hostage. They throw their tiny amount of clothes in the limited availability big speed dryer, on the day you have your big fluffy comforter. Lady, your clothes will be ready in 3 minutes in that thing, why do you have it set for 48 minutes!? For some reason, they’re always able to sneak in right before your wash cycle ends, then you just have to sit even longer and watch all the freaks.
8. The Folding Area Hog: Their inventory of clothes spans greater than Macy’s. Each folding table is covered with their clothes, and probably those of 20 other people in their village of a family. Not only are they taking up all the tables, but they have an entourage of folders taking up every inch of standing room. Just grab your stuff and go, their army is t00 big for this battle.
9. The I Hope No One Notices What I’m Putting In Here: This category is probably the one I relate most to. My stratgegy is to quickly grab my clothes with both arms and shove it into the machine, and put the gross stuff way in the back. For example, I wasn’t sure if I could put a throw rug in there, that was covered in dog vomit, so I swiftly threw it in concealing it’s identity with my body. A few weeks ago, a woman commented on how I left a ton of dog hair in the washer. This is why I try to go at odd hours from now on.