The Great Unwashed

“You will never believe what happened to me yesterday!” Aaron announced pretty much the moment they sat down on their bench that overlooked the Penobscot River.

“Do tell!” Holly insisted since she was always up for story time.

“Yesterday was Saturday, so it was laundry day,” he explained.

Holly nodded and sipped her coffee.  “You are a creature of habit.”

“Please don’t make me explain again why Saturday is clearly the best day of the week to do laundry,” he pleaded.  “You know how much I hate repeating myself.”

“My bad,” Holly accepted the burden of blame.  “Please continue…”

flash fiction, short story, Modern PhilosopherAaron needed a moment to recover from her unexpected interruption, and collected himself by taking a long sip of his Snapple.

“I had the whole day planned.  Went for a run, mowed my lawn, and then the plan was to shower, throw in a load of laundry, make a big breakfast, and watch the Yankees.”

“Sounds like a perfect Saturday,” Holly said not at all sarcastically.

In the days before COVID, he’d invite her over all the time to watch the game.  But ever since the pandemic hit, and the world became a stranger place, the invitations to his house had been few and far between.

Holly was not a fan of this, but there was nothing she could do about it.  It was like she was a vampire and could not enter his house unless she was invited.

“It would have been a perfect day, but when I sat down to eat, the house was too quiet,” he explained.  “The living room is right above where the washer and driver are in the basement, and I should have heard the peaceful hum of the machine cleaning my clothes.”

“So what did you do?” Holly asked as she turned to face him.

While the river was gorgeous, she much preferred the view of her best friend, especially when he was all animated telling a story.

“I went down to the basement, and to my chagrin, I discovered the clothes just sitting there in the soapy water.  As you know, I’m no Mr. Fix It, but I did a lot of dial turning, maybe even kicked the washer just to wake it up, but nothing happened.”

Holly suppressed a smile.

“I thought maybe I’d overloaded the washer, so I took out some of the clothes,” he continued.  “Of course, they were sopping wet, so I wrung them out before I put them into the basket.  Then I started the whole spin the dial, kick the washer, and pray routine again…”

“You didn’t mention praying the first time,” Holly pointed out because she loved to get under his skin when he told an involved story.  For some reason, that just made him even more passionate about relating it to his audience.

“Regardless, it didn’t work,” he grumbled.  “So there I was with a load of laundry soaking in a washer full of water.  I tried to call a repair place, but nothing was open on a Saturday.  Does that even make sense?  Doesn’t Saturday sound like an ideal day to do business with customers who work all week?”

“So what did you do ” she asked.

“I ran next door.  My neighbors were painting their porch, and I explained what happened.  They told me to bring the laundry to their house, so I could at least get clean clothes out of the deal.  Of course, that was an ordeal because I had to wring out every piece of laundry.  Even then, the basket weighed a ton because wet clothes are heavy!”

Holly giggled.  She didn’t mean to, but she just couldn’t help it.

“I’m sorry, but the mental image of you hauling that heavy basket up your narrow basement steps, through the house, across the driveway, and then down to your neighbors’ basement is pretty hilarious.”

short story, humor, Modern PhilosopherAaron chuckled and took a sip of his Snapple.

“I probably looked ridiculous,” he agreed.

“So how did you leave it?” she asked, knowing full well that Aaron tended to ruminate on anything that didn’t go according to plan, to the point that he gave himself anxiety.

Aaron shrugged.  “What could I do?  I had to get the water out of the washer, so I bailed it out with a plastic container and poured it down the drain.  It took me almost an hour, and I was sweating like a pig because it was so hot yesterday.”

“Ironic that you had all that water, but couldn’t hop in for a swim,” Holly quipped.  “Now that would have been quite the sight!”

“And with my luck, the washer would have miraculously repaired itself while I was bathing in it, and gone into the spin cycle and caused me to puke all over myself.”

“Then you’d have to figure out how to get that out of the machine,” Holly giggled.

Aaron let out a heavy sigh and smiled.  “It was not one of my better days.  Thanks for helping me to laugh about something stressful over which I had absolutely no control.”

“That’s what best friends are for,” she reminded him with a wink.

Holly and Aaron will return next Sunday with another witty conversation.  Unless, of course, Aaron comes to his senses by then, and they run off to get married…

About Austin

Native New Yorker who's fled to the quiet life in Maine. I write movies, root for the Yankees, and shovel lots of snow.
This entry was posted in Humor and tagged , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

13 Responses to The Great Unwashed

  1. kristianw84 says:

    I understand Aaron’s frustration. My dishwasher stopped working in the middle of the cycle. I opened the door and water came rushing out. Curses flowed out of my mouth and I cried while hand washing the dishes. Haha! Luckily, I didn’t have to endure the trouble of carrying my wet clothes over to the neighbors. Fortunately, Aaron has good neighbors. Leave it to Holly to make Aaron feel better! 🥰

  2. Ocean Bream says:

    Everybody needs somebody to vent their frustrations to. Big or small. Always helps make things a little less monstrous in one’s mind.

  3. markbialczak says:

    I hope it’s an easy repair for the washer in this fictional chapter where I think there may be truth to the dirty details, Austin.

  4. beth says:

    glad the neighbors were there to help and I find there is always something breaking…..)

  5. Pingback: The week gone by — Aug. 15 – A Silly Place

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