Being the completely objective person that I am, I love to read Dear Abby-type advice columns. Here’s a recent letter followed by my answer, were I to pen a “Dear Dave” column.
My husband announced yesterday morning that he had discovered on the eve of a two-day business trip that he was out of underwear.
Why the Boob told me, I don’t know. I never tell him when I’m out of underwear.
His remedy, in true guy fashion, was to wash exactly three pair of underwear while disregarding the bulging hamper full of the rest of his underwear, which presumably would wash itself during his absence.
What should I do about his male attitude toward the laundry?”
Dear All Washed-Up,
This is a perfect example of the kind of hurtful stereotypical blanket statement about men that women, as a group, are always making.
Just because your husband doesn’t do the entire laundry doesn’t mean that there aren’t millions and millions of males who do do the laundry, then hang it out to dry under the five suns of the Planet Zorcon where they live.
I will admit, however, that most guys here on Earth don’t do any more laundry than they absolutely have to. A single sock load would not be out of the question. Why is this, you ask?
Are men simply worthless, irresponsible scum? Possibly yes, but that is not the cause of their laundry impairment.
The cause of this problem is that men — even when they learn where the washer and dryer are located — are afraid to do the laundry, especially laundry belonging to members of the other gender.
Through past experience, they know they will probably once again get into BIG TROUBLE.
The problem is that women usually own a lot of sensitive garments with laundering instruction tags full of strict warnings like: DO NOT MACHINE WASH. DO NOT USE BLEACH. DO NOT USE HOT WATER. DO NOT USE WARM WATER. DO NOT EVEN TOUCH THIS GARMENT. PUT IT DOWN IMMEDIATELY, YOU BIG CLUMSY OAF.
Personally, I am intimidated by such instruction tags.
My first technique for doing the laundry was what laundry experts call the “pile-and-wash system” that was developed in my college years, wherein you put your dirty laundry on the floor in a pile until you can’t stand it anymore or have no more clean clothes, then you wash them.
Women, on the other hand, follow a complex procedure involving sorting and pre-soaking with 15 different combinations of water temperatures and chemical compounds such as fabric softener, stain remover, fabric hardener, cream rinse, ointments, magical potions, suppositories, enriched plutonium, etc.
A woman wouldn’t let a man do her laundry until he underwent years of intense training because she knows he’d screw up and her garments would shrink to cute little Tinkerbell clothes.
I’m not making excuses or saying it’s right. I’m just saying that a lot of males have developed a powerful laundry phobia and will continue to suffer this affliction as long as women roll their eyes, call us names (Boob) and shove us away from the washing machine.
All men are asking is for women to try to be more understanding when your male partner is about to, for example, wash your so called “Delicate Laundry” in the same load as his pick-up truck tarp.
“In The Doghouse” Dear Dave