Wednesday, February 6, 2013


It had been                      since I washed my clothes.

See what I did there? I blanked out how long it had been since my last laundry day. That's called omitting information. It works quite well when sitting at a keyboard. I think I'll start doing that more often.

My deepest, darkest secret is that                                                                               .

You can see it if you squint really closely and slowly move to the left.

Please don't tell me you just squinted closely and moved to the left. If you did, you are a                   . : )

Sorry, enough of that.

I don't have a washer or dryer, and I don't have money for the laundromat, and my clothes never get dirty, so there hasn't been any reason to do laundry. (Except the fact that one of those previously mentioned reasons was actually a bold-faced lie.)

Yesterday I decided that it was time I find a way to wash my clothes. A pessimist may say it took me the very last pair of dirty underwear to reach this conclusion, but me, the optimist, says it took me the very last pair of clean underwear to reach this conclusion. Either way you look at it, the conclusion was reached, and dirty underwear was never worn. And so, I put on my sweatpants, I packed a couple suitcases, and I grabbed my lavender-scented dryer sheets. As I got in my car, it hit me: dorm rooms have laundromats...

I ran back inside, packed my backpack full of homework in need of finishing, and hopped back inside my automobile.

To the dorms! I exclaimed, in my head, fist pumping the air, in my head.

I illegally parked, put an old ticket on my windshield so it looked like I had already been fined, and staggered toward the underclassmen's laundry room carrying two suitcases, a backpack, detergent, fabric softener, and a bag of Sour Patch Kids clenched between my teeth.

After locating The Magical Room of Home Appliances that I Won't Ever Be Able to Afford, I knocked on the door, trying to look as much like a freshman as I could. (Big, naive, ignorant, clueless grin.)

I started to think that someone would see me and my suitcases and say, "Move-in day was a month ago, and no one lives in the laundromat." This thought made me as nervous as a whore at the gynecologist, but before I could think any further, the door swung open.

"Thanks!" I said, "They usually leave it unlocked!"

That's right, Natasha. Act like you come here all the time. (Except the fact that you have a year's supply of clothes with you.)

I filled three washers and "started the load." Then I took a seat and, like a good little freshman, I began working on my homework.


My intimate moment with Ralph Waldo Emerson was abruptly interrupted.


I didn't look up when I heard the laugh, and I didn't look up when I heard the apology, because I know all too well that series of events.


His laugh was too loud and it ended too quickly. This could only mean one thing: dude wants to socialize.


But yes. He did. Because then he continued.

"Listen to this!" he chortled. There was still no need to look up at him, because we were the only two people in there, so his options of audience members were pretty limited.

He read me something, laughed loudly and continuously, and then I continued to do my homework.

"I'm sorry, am I bothering you?"

"I have a lot to do."

"Yeah, me too. So what's your major?"

"I need to finish this."

"Yeah, yeah, what's your name?"

"How old are you."

"What? I'm a junior. Why'd you ask that?"

"I have to get this homework done."
I really don't know why I had asked him that, probably because he looked like he was 12 years old and I thought if I proved that I was much older than him, he would leave me alone.

"Oh okay, sorry, what class is it for?"
But he didn't.


"I'm an English major!"

Oh. Joy.

"I'm also on the wrestling team."

Oh. Boy.

"So. Have you read Lord of the Rings?"

Oh. Oy.

It's not that I had nothing to say. I had plenty to say! I could have told him that just the other night I looked up my Hobbit name - Jinoic Newbuck, Princess of the Halflings - among my dwarf name, wizard name, and elf name. BUT I WAS BUSY.

"I'm really busy. I need to get this done."

"That's cool, that's cool."

"I'm going outside."

"If I let you back in, will you talk to me?"

Why. Why. Why. Why. Why does this happen to me. Why. I was being beyond rude; who wants to chat about Frodo with a Frodon't?

I left the door ajar to avoid even answering his question, and I returned a few minutes later. He was eyeing my Sour Patch Kids.

Seriously, he was. At least I think he was. Look, I was on edge, and I also have this embedded paranoia that everyone is after my candy. I blame this on growing up with General Mills commercials.

"They're always after me Lucky Charms!"

I know how you feel, little leprechaun. I know how you feel.

(Is "little leprechaun" redundant? Is that like saying 'slutty hooker?' But can't some leprechauns be bigger than others, deeming the rest 'little?')

Parents always warn their children about strangers asking you if you want any candy, but they failed to warn us about strangers asking for our candy. It's a major flaw in the parental department.

I took a seat, carefully tucked my SPKs in my backpack, and started vigorously writing in hopes that my sped-up hand movements would suggest that those notes really needed taking.

He kept laughing.

And laughing.

And laughing.

And then he starts banging shit around.

I don't know what the kid was doing, but it involved a repetitive series of loud, obnoxious noises. Out of my peripheral vision, because I was still refusing to make eye contact, I could see him throwing shit. But what the hell was he throwing? His laundry detergent? Ten times? 

Finally, some girl walked in. What was a brief moment of peace was cut short, for he started laughing again. 

"I have to read this to you!"

I looked up this time, and saw that he was looking at the other girl. Then he began reading.

The same fucking passage he read to me an hour ago. The guy had been pretending to flip pages this entire time. 

Is this some kind of pick-up thing? Instead of bars, he goes to the laundromat, in the middle of the night, with the same book, and the same highlighted passage, and waits for chicks to read aloud to?

I ended the dryer time early and I left. The last thing I heard was:

"So. Have you read Lord of the Rings?"

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