Tuesday, May 12, 2009

At the Dry Cleaners

I was greeted by name at the Dry Cleaners this morning, as I always am at this Dry Cleaners. My last two Dry cleaners, both of which I went to for years, and saw the same folks year in year out, always had a different greeting “name please ?” they would ask sourly. One does not have too much animosity toward bad attitudes when the person behind the attitude is forced to work at a Dry Cleaner for eight hours a day.


I don’t like going to the Dry Cleaners. They are usually hot and you often have to wait in line behind a complainer. I have had run ins myself with Dry Cleaners over the years. One Dry Cleaner lost a pair of suit pants of mine. They would never return my calls so I eventually drove over to their headquarters and had one of my little “Airport moments” usually reserved for those who work with airlines. My fit impressed no one and I had to file the first and only lawsuit I have  ever filed on my own behalf in my life. I sued a Dry cleaner in small claims court. After they were served with the suit, they paid me for the suit.


I am well known at my Dry cleaners because I am one of only two of their customers who get shirts folded instead of returned on hangers. If I made a list of the ten most irritating things in my life, wire coat hangers would be on that list. I have hated them since childhood, I seem to recall being spanked with one once, but I may be wrong. My mother usually grabbed whatever was handy. Nothing looks worse than a closet full of wire coat hangers, and nothing is harder to get rid of. I guess I also like the shirts folded because that is the way my dad got them when I was young. I used the cardboard backings to draw on and have a lot of pleasant memories about that. In those days, all wire hangers came with a piece of removable cardboard on the base of the triangle. These were used by my brother and I in mock sword fights. So in those days, the Dry cleaners could provide a lot of amusement. Nostalgia aside, I just like folded shirts. At other Cleaners this has made me a hated figure, I have been sneered at for asking for folded shirts, despite the fact that they make more money off of folding.


The big deal at the cleaners today was my daughter’s dress. They had to charge extra for pleats. Twenty five cents a pleat ,with a ceiling of ten dollars per item. I got hit with a  four buck pleat charge (twenty pleats) and they were very apologetic about it, so I guess someone must complain about a pleat charge. I know so little about it that it never crossed my mind to be upset. I would not iron a pleat for a quarter. I don’t begrudge paying a quarter to whoever does it. I’ll just add the four bucks to my daughter’s rent for the summer.


I must say, that when you start blogging about your morning at the Dry Cleaner’s, you have probably come close to scraping the bottom of the blogging  barrel. I doubt that I will look back with a great deal of fondness over my pleat story in the years to come. But most of life is a trip to the Dry cleaners, filled with both the mundane and the irritating, spiced only occasionally by a memorable story. It may be that writing about the dry cleaner means that I am getting close to running out of stories. I’ll get back to you as soon as I think of something interesting. Starch ?








Blogger Paul D. Frazier said...

On the contrary. I found "At the Dry Cleaners" to be more interesting than the article on Manny R's hormone and drug problems. Manny R is some spoiled, rich athelete. Screw him.

There are few ways now to show our love for our kids, other than to pay extra to have their clothes cleaned. Your daughter is certainly worth a quarter a pleat.

And you described the reasons why you like your shirts folded instead of hung on hangers. I had never thought of such an option before. I found the whole thing entirely fascinating.

Now you know what living in a small town is like. The mundane is Life.

2:25 PM  
Blogger Jannie Funster said...

Next thing you'll be writing about running around "starch" naked, as the 7 year-old said to the 5-year old.

I LOVED this post.

You know Jack Brown can donate your stuff to the Salvation Army if you don't pick it up after 30 days? At least they had that power vested in them in May, 1994. My wide-legged beige linen pants and long slinky pink evening sweater with the silver threads running throughout it -- the onesame outfit I was photographed in beside Jim at Churchill's restaurant on the Queen Mary? Gone. Forever!

People, read your dry-cleaning fine-print, wherever and whoever ye be.

On and even sadder note, you read "A Book Of Ruth" by that writer lady who also wrote "A Map Of The World?" Talk about your heart-breaking dry cleaner working ladies. Of course the stain-spotters are at the top of their hierarchy. Even above the folders and pleat ironers.

And my experinece is the only 2 things that are less expensive in Canada are dry cleaning and movies. Movies you sit in a theatre for, that is.

Highly informative, I'm sure.

Now, what's for lunch? Nova Scotia lobster - I'm there!

11:54 AM  

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