The Stages of Laundry

08/14/2010 By Shawn Burns

This was a terrible idea for a post. If you’ve read down this far, two sentences passed the title, then I’m not sure we can be friends anymore because you have no taste. Who in their right mind wants to read about laundry, much less a laundry list (har har) of the stages of the damned stuff?

It seemed like a great idea at the time, which was ten minutes ago when I was sorting laundry. I stood there in the laundry room taking in the growing piles in front of me and I was surprised to see that the pile of bright coloured clothing was the biggest pile in the room.

For a man who wears almost nothing but blue jeans and dark t-shirts, married to an attorney who wears almost nothing but clothing that requires dry cleaning, the fact that the largest pile of clothing in the house was now the bright colours meant something. In our early years of marriage we used to have almost no brightly coloured clothing that would stand up to a washing machine; it was always the smallest pile, if there was enough for a pile at all.

But now there are kids in our lives, and along with kids come bright colours of fabrics that can be abused in a washing machine. And kids bring a volume of clothing that is unbelievable: while I freely admit to wearing my jeans until they stand up on their own, kids get food and dirt and snot all over everything they wear and that means new clothing every day. Kids clothes never pass the sniff test.

So, as I was standing there staring at the pile of reds and greens and pinks and blues and purples and oranges and yellows, I thought: “This is a freaking metaphor for parenthood right here!” You know, because kids add colour and life to your drab existence. Har har. It’s so insightful. Did you see the insight?


So I started to write a post about it, and then I realized it was a stupid idea for a post because that is one boring metaphor and mostly I’d just be talking about laundry and nobody wants to read about laundry.

Are you still here?

Go read something at McSweeney’s and get the hell out of here. You’re just getting dumber by reading this.