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Friday, Jan. 21, 2005 | link
What is the etiquette for laundry rooms? I've always thought that if people aren't there to take their wet clothes out of the machine when it's finished, then you're allowed to go in, haul out the underwear, towels, and stained sleeping things, and replace them with your own load of very cute underwear, socks, and icy-green pants from Target. As long as you don't throw their stuff on the ground, as long as you pile it neatly on top of the dryer, that's fine, right? Apparently some people consider such behavior the utmost in rudeness, though, touching their stuff, rushing them like that. But I feel like if you're that sensitive then maybe do whatever it takes to be there the very second the spin cycle rolls to a stop? Then again, what good is it for me to pull someone's clothes out of the washing machine? Unless those clothes go into the dryer at the exact second that my clothes go into the wash, the wait's merely delayed to the end of the wash cycle: when it's time for me to move over to the dryer, that bottlenecking load is still going to be using it, right? So I don't know. Sometimes things are complicated.
Kristin Windbigler and I had a long chat about gym etiquette, too, like how close a person should stand while they wait for you to finish sweating and toiling on machine, and does the twenty-minute-per-machine limit INCLUDE the two-minute warmdown or is that EXTRA? And what sport, exactly, is the elliptical trainer mimicking, horizontal stair skiing? The bicycle water globe mill? Then we talked about people who refuse to sit down on the bus out of some horribly misdirected chivalry, "no, I'm fine here!" when in actuality they're clotting the aisle, crowding everyone behind them. "No, no, it's nice here ... standing. I'm young, healthy, and free!" Then we talked about the people who won't step aside on the escalator. Then we talked about how we're getting old and things are moving and spreading and hurting in new, puzzling ways, and I wondered about when, exactly, it would be time for me to cut off my hair and give up buttons and zippers for elastic. Then we talked about how if only there could be a drug that would infuse you with black-and-white, unquestionable teenaged certainty ("Yeah, but imagine the side-effects," Kristin said). Or, conversely, if you could take a drug when you are 18 that makes you realize how hot you really are, what with all that bouncy smoothness (this, once again, applies to my oft-cited, x-shaped matrix that links insecurity to optimal desirability and waning looks to "oh whatever, I'm just going to stand here and make the coffee naked, take it or leave it"). Then Kristen had to go to make a pot of buffalo chili, which is one of the best "I have to go"s ever.
Meanwhile, I think I may have repurchased the exact same pair of pants I gave away over a year ago? The very pants, as a matter of fact, that I was wearing the day I checked into the hospital with a gangrenous appendix? Which means I've officially chubbed back up to my "with appendix" weight? Apparently my appendix weighed a whole dress size? Huh. Speaking of bigger, I just got the most recent Bust, the one with Bjork on the cover, and there's an awesome fashion spread featuring a normally sized model, and it really surprised me, a) how much the sight of it struck me as unusual, and b) how very good it made me to see such a thing. See? I'm sure fifty-four-year-old Evany would tell thirty-four-year-old Evany to just thank the pounds for the happy pants reunion and go get a hamburger.
And that's exactly what she did.