I hate it. It’s true. I don’t hate anything quite like I hate my washing machine. It makes me angry. It’s pretentious. It’s dysfunctional. It made promises it couldn’t keep. I made a big mistake the day I brought it home.
It starts out like any new relationship, my old one died and I needed a new one. I was looking for a young, shiny, sleek, new model. I wanted better than I had before and I was going to spare no expense. In fact, I would forgo the matching dryer, because I didn’t need the dryer like I needed the washing machine. I needed it to fill the hole that my old one left behind and fast, because the laundry was piling up.
Laundry has somehow become my job in the home. I am not complaining in the least. I LOVE to do the laundry. I like putting the dirty clothes in the washer with one of those new-fangled detergent pods, turning on the machine, hearing it whirring away until it stops abruptly, and then tossing the deliciously clean clothes into the dryer. Everything smells so nice and fresh and the clothes are so warm and toasty when they come out of the dryer. Laundry is such a joy.
That was before my new washing machine. My old machine and I were together for about 10 years. I bought it when I started residency and it was just me living alone in an apartment. I had never purchased a major appliance before. It was mid grade, with an agitator in the middle that got the water sudsy and really worked my clothes into a lather. It was dependable. Reliable. It kept it’s promises. My clothes were always fresh and clean.
Fast forward a few years, a move to a new town, a husband, some kids, and my sweet little washing machine that could, just couldn’t anymore. An orange oily substance leaked out all over the floor and the repairman said I burned out the transmission. Or was it the radiator? I might be thinking of my old Toyota…
Shopping for a new machine was daunting, but exciting. I could go front load, no agitator, high efficiency, water conservation. I could go high tech, 21st century, digital. So I did. Everything except the front loader. I loved my machine, but it was old school. Imagine if it could do such an incredible job, what must this new machine be able to accomplish and with less water? I’d be saving the world one load of laundry at a time!
I have had it for about 2 years and I’ve needed the repairman to come out twice. I have had to go to the local laundry mat for weeks at a time, which is an adventure in itself. That’s when it hits me. The machines at the laundromat are like my old one, with an agitator in the middle. I hold the top open and stare longingly at my soapy clothes dancing around in the water and I fall into a deep melancholy. I can just see the clothes getting clean. Oh, how I miss my washing machine!
My clothes stink all the time. The kids’ clothes take several cycles to get them truly clean (so much for water conservation). I washed my dog’s blanket last night after he puked on it and it came out of the wash with the exact same puke spot it started with. How is this possible? Nothing gets clean. Not like my old machine. The one with the agitator. My first washing machine. You never forget your first. I really loved that one…sigh.