January 2007 Archives

Dirty Laundry

Dear Finn

Yesterday we had a bit of fun. Which in the way the some of these things do, turned into something not so fun. Something that started off so deliciously funny, so toddler sweet, with numerous cutesie photo opportunities...and then ended up so full of rage and tempest, head bashing rain and sunshine, I could have called the meteorological office and asked them to give it the next girl's name on the list.
It was the washing. Who would've thought.

Your fascination with washing machines has been building for a bit now. You know, the cool spinny vibrating action. All that going outside to put clothes on the airing rack. Nice clean dry clothes sitting around in piles waiting to be redistributed on the floor. Totally understandable. It increased over our Christmas holiday, as we were staying in an apartment with a front loader. This washing machine did not look anything like our washing machine (a top loader), but yet was still patently a washing machine. You could watch all the water and clothes go round and round. You could open the door and put clothes in it yourself. As a toddler entertainment tool it was perfect. You seemed to bring that fascination home with you, showing even more interest in the process than normal. So we come to yesterday.

You started off with taking all the dirty clothes out of the washing basket and throwing them around the bathroom floor. Cool. You then, one by one, took various items of clothes from the bathroom floor out to the airing rack, placing them carefully over the bottom rung. Every placement was accompanied with a little jig of satisfaction at your achievement. This is when I started instant messaging your Dad at work, telling him how funny and sweet you were being.
The next step was you insisting that I pick you up with each individual piece of clothing in hand, so you could deposit it in the washing machine itself. Fine. I wish you didn't weigh so much, and I wish we didn't have that many dirty clothes. But still. Cute. The next step was probably my fault. With all the clothes littered around the floor I decided to put on the wash. Most of them were white, so a white load it was.

Now as far as I can tell, washing seems to be a fairly mysterious process for those saddled with a Y chromosome. Your Dad, with his PhD in Brainybox Science, still doesn't seem to think himself qualified to use the all magical washing device, with its incomprehensible covenants regarding whites and coloureds. So it was perhaps completely understandable that once I had shown you the washing powder input and the turning on of the shining buttons, causing the beast to shudder and shake, you could not comprehend at all why I would not allow you to add your favourite lime green t-shirt to the mix. This was obviously a hideous oversight. This was the most urgent case of dirty washing ever. What was your Mother thinking? You cajoled. You pleaded. You giggled to be lifted up, so you could do it yourself. You cried every time we tried to leave the washing machine to its thing and close the door. You eventually yelled. And screamed. And shrieked.

There was no happy ending. There was no distraction from the cause of the Lime Green Shirt in Urgent Need of Washing. I threw you in the pram, gave you some warm milk and we walked out the door. The t-shirt is still in the washing basket where today it might get washed. I suspect, while you are sleeping.

So mate.
Rage against the washing machine.
Maybe Santa will bring you a front loader next Christmas and you can become the master of your own dirty laundry.
Bring it on.