There was a day when the washing machine decided to display an error message. It was a Saturday. Birds chattered in the trees outside. A couple of visitors were coming over to critique the state of my furniture and interior decorating choices. There were many things to do. There wasn’t enough time to visit a repair person or find another machine.
The thought of connecting my foot with this innocent looking machine sent a jolt of joy to my demeanour. I thought how lovely it would be to throw this machine at my visitors when they walked into my home to inspect and patronise me and mine so ardently.
Standing in front of my trusty steed of a washing machine, I could do nothing but think about how the washing would be washed. Would it be by some divine hand that the clothes would become wet and clean? Would there be another option, such as a personal servant? Would I simply give up and throw them out the front door?
This error message jolted me from a life of comfortable bliss, in which the clothes went into a machine and then came out smelling sweet and feeling wet yet dry. Now I’m faced with manually scrubbing the little beasts with my hands, wood, kitchen utensils, perhaps the dishwasher, or god knows what else?
That day I realised that the washing machine of my life keeps fucking with my clothes.
The laundry is full of our clothes. Some are small, some are large, some display a lack of fashion sense, some are sexy, some are sloppy, while others should be thrown in the bin.
We wear these clothes upon our skin because we are trapped within our monetary constraints, the temptation to buy designer labels does not appeal to our sensibilities, and the thought of shopping sends a feeling of dread down our spines.
Sometimes I wonder about these crumpled clothes that pile up upon the laundry floor. Why do they keep piling up so high? Will I die with a basket of unwashed clothing in my house with pictures of cats on my knickers? Will I be remembered as the person with bad fashion sense and a taste for kinky underwear? Is Jesus even real?
So many thoughts move through my head, as I contemplate all of these important ideas about washing, and clothing, and life, and all of that stuff that occupies no place in a normal person’s mind.
The laundry is like my life – crumpled clothes keep filling up the washing basket of my life to clutter my day, make me question so many things, and give one a sense of pessimistic dread at the thought of leaving connubial constraints laid bare for the world to see when I die.
I saw a hardwood floor made of oak the other day. The floor was smooth and beautiful.
When I saw the hardwood floor, I recalled that hardwood floor that you and I lived upon in that place.
I recalled the nights of cold and terror, the torture of your words, the way you humiliated me –
the way you changed me forever.
The kitchen was once her refuge. It was a place where she could create anything. The kitchen was a place of her own in a tiny house.
Then he got a taste for cooking. It ceased to be a place where she could create anything. He mocks her creations and says his creations are better than hers.
They stand in the kitchen together one evening as he scolds her for being different from him with her creations.
She lets it go and decides to fill the dishwasher and turn it on. Water begins to exit the dishwasher through the door and pour out all over the floor.
He blames her for the dishwasher malfunctioning to which she replies, “when the water exits the dishwasher I am reminded of all the bullshit that flows from your jaw”.
He stands at the bench unable to think of something witty to say as she walks from the kitchen, to the garage, and out the door.
The study is a place of bourgeois reflection and hard-won luxury for this man of the people.
He reflects on the day and sometimes other things as he prepares to mix himself a drink.
The leather lounge chair smells so expensive to him that no candle could ever compare.
As he sits down to ponder his life, he feels nice as a renaissance man with a full head of hair and most of his teeth.
The lounge chair of luxury is beautiful and hard, just like the interior decoration and his mood.
He reclines on the lounge chair of luxury, but he is unable to find a comfortable spot.
The leather lounge chair cannot replace that hollow feeling felt so often, now his heart feels no love.
You live with a fridge from yesteryear. Her door is old and the suction is a bit off.
Partying like you’re in your twenties, you drunk too much last night and feel flat.
You descend the staircase to the kitchen for some relief from the heat and sickness.
Placing one foot in front of the other, you stand in front of your vintage fridge.
You open the fridge only to find that there is a secret garden hidden inside your love.
Putrid smells and semi-decaying pumpkins reveal themselves to you in horror.
You see moss, mould, mushrooms and something else growing in that ecosystem.
Peachy, you feast your eyes on the greenery and decide to close the fridge for good.
You value your tummy, so upon closing the fridge you kiss her and say goodbye.
We loved each other so well.
You used to throw your socks at the bookcase when you arrived home, I would scold you, and then you would give me that disarming smile of Satan.
I would always wash your socks, hang them up to dry or put them in the dryer, and then lay them out in pairs only to fold them into smiley faces.
You decided to stop throwing your socks at the bookcase. Instead, you started taking them off in your computer room surrounded by your books, snacks, and hentai.
I wept for us and decided to let you go.
You’ve gone away, never to throw those smelly socks at the bookcase.
The ones you left behind don’t smile the way they used to.