2009-05-09 / News

Lighten up: Men aren't welcome in laundry room

By Dawn Weber

Attention men of America: step away from the dryer.

Every weekend, in homes across the land, thousands of males toss ALL the clothes into the Kenmores, and crank the dial full-tilt.

Sweaters? Sure! Swimsuits? Great! Lace-silky-girlie things? In they go.

Two hours later: clothes that are crispy, hot and size 2T.

It's a dryer, not a fryer. For the love of God, my pants barely fit me as it is. I spend most days sucking my ample gut in and trying to see if I can get away with an unbuttoned fly. Honey? When you dry my clothes for days? I consider serving you papers.

Last weekend, I cornered my husband in the hallway. He was whistling and carrying a laundry basket.

"Where do you think you're going?" I asked.

"Um, I was going to do some laundry?" he said.

"No way, mister," I said "Fork it over - I've seen your work."

And it's not just the young guys getting in on the shrinkage acts. My best friend Amber's grandpa, 92-year-old Wags, thought he'd help her out by doing some laundry recently. It went something like this:

''Ahhhcccckkkk! Who put my sweaters in the dryer?,'' said Amber.

''Whatcha say?,'' said Wags.

''I said who the HELL put my sweaters in the dryer?'' she repeated

Wags heard her this time, but he knew he was in deep weeds. So he chose the path of the fauxhearing impaired.

''Huh? Whatcha say?'' said Wags

That fabric care label is just a suggestion for a man, just a tag to cut out. Tim Allen says, 'Real man dry clothes long time, many hours, arrrrrrgggghhhh!'

But women respect the threads. You just don't throw any and every fabric into the dryer for hours on end. Silks, rayons, lycra - these items require artful draping over the treadmill.

Before the hate mail pours in, allow me the standard public service announcement: I'm sure plenty of men out there have mastered the Maytag. I'm sure there are males who know their spandex from their lycra from their cotton. I know none of these men.

Trust me: I work 40 hours a week outside the home, so I want my husband to help. I need my husband to help. Soggy dishes, dust bunnies aplenty and hungry kids await him. Traditional manchores - trash-hauling, spidersquashing all your basic icky stuff - his domain. He's hardpressed to screw these up.

Guys? Sweep the floors, polish some wood, scrub the tub. Mow some grass, wipe the counters, scoop some dog crap. But please, in the name of Victoria's Secret, leave the laundry to us.

Editor's Note: Dawn Weber is a Brownsville wife and mother of two pre-teens who commutes daily to Columbus for her fulltime job. Her new column will be appearing from time to time.

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