While a Senior in college, I “punked” one of my apartment mates by switching out his dirty laundry for clean clothes and returning the used articles to their original drawers. The joke worked even better than expected, since he wore soiled items for five days before the truth dawned. Two days ago, I played the same prank. Except, this time the trick was purely unintentional, as was the victim.
My wife has been drowning at work lately. What with early morning meetings, afternoon conference calls, and nightly catch-up tasks, she hasn’t rested in days. I can tell the pressure’s getting to her, since she’s stopped obsessing over her daily wardrobe. Rather than undertaking her usual twenty minute, ten outfit selection procedure, Sophia’s been grabbing the first ensemble she comes across in the closet.
Sympathizing with her plight, I wanted to help make Sophia’s life easier. Although she’s strictly limited the clothing I can wash, I decided to check the laundry room and see if I could somehow assist there. The day before yesterday, I came across a situation which didn’t number among my prohibited activities. The washing machine contained a load of damp clothes. Realizing the Mrs. must’ve forgotten to toss them in the dryer after washing them, I took the liberty of doing so. I then folded and returned each item to its proper place in the closet.
Sophia worked late that night and arrived home after I’d already gone to sleep. Yesterday morning, she dressed and left the house before I awoke. By the time we finally met up again, last evening, I hadn’t seen or spoken to her in almost forty-eight hours!
For a change, she came home before me. As glad as I was to see her, the feeling definitely wasn’t mutual. Her first words weren’t remotely along the lines of “Hi honey.” Instead, the moment I stepped into the kitchen, she held up one of her blouses and testily asked: “Richard, is this your doing?”
As I soon learned, the damp clothes I’d discovered in the washing machine hadn’t been washed already. And only one article had actually been wet: the blouse Sophia shoved in my face. Critically, its dampness drew solely from her rinsing it prior to washing … in an effort to remove the residue of dog food, carrots and liver treats Prometheus had regurgitated during an incident of car sickness.
While my wife headed upstairs to rewash nearly her entire wardrobe, I tried to explain my actions and apologize: “Honestly, I didn’t notice those bits of dog puke on your shirt before I tossed it in the dryer; I swear I didn’t smell that rancid odor when I hung it in your closet; and I’m very sorry you didn’t realize something was wrong until the meeting with your boss, instead of when you grabbed the blouse off the rack and put it on this morning.”