Thursday, May 12, 2011

Ode to Lost Dryer Sheets

I lost my dryer sheets in the Wal-mart parking lot.
At least, I think they’re there. Alone on the cold dark asphalt. Ghastly orange under the sodium street lamps. Cryin’ for their mama.
I’m sorry, dryer sheets. I really wanted you here with me. You were the reason I made a detour on the way home from my writers’ group, even though I was tired and my eyes were all baggy, like bags; you know, with bags. Not big bags, but carry-on luggage bags. 
I don’t normally shop at 9:45 on a weeknight but that’s how badly I wanted you.
My clothes have been so clingy lately. Needy. I felt I couldn’t breathe. I had to do something and you were there, in the soap department, calling my name.
“Hey you! Ya, you, the one with the static cling.”
So it wasn’t exactly my name. 
Nevertheless, I felt your pull. 
Ignoring the vows I made to the environment to hang my laundry on the clothesline, breaking every rule that was good and just, I rushed (OK, so I waddled) into the big blue behemoth and slid a cold hard debit card on the counter to buy my wicked wares.
And here’s the thing about Wally World. There’s a reason folks call it the Hundred Dollar Store. You don’t just come out of there with dryer sheets; you come out with a cart full of crap. I mean, really, did I need Post’s new cereal or was it just all alluring in its ancient grains box in the centre aisle? 
At least Scrawl-Mart isn’t as expensive as Costco. We call that the Three Hundred Dollar Store.
I noticed, when I was pushing my shopping cart through the parking lot, that one of the bags was slipping through the cracks of the top section of the cart – you know, the place you stick your offspring when they’re still at the sippy-cup stage. Don’t try to stick your 14-year-old in the cart. Believe me, I’ve tried.
Unconcerned, I stuffed the bag back in the cart.
See? That’s where I made my Big Mistake.
If I had of been more conscientious, I might have noticed you falling on the ground. Trust me, the same thing has happened with my kid. Luckily everything is fine with him now except that he talks funny and his hair is blue.
But I didn’t notice.
You probably fell out then and there, and then watched, with a Mountain Valley Fresh Scented tear in your eye, as I callously drove away. Who knows, maybe I even backed over you first.
I hate to admit this, but I didn’t even notice you were missing until the next morning when I went to put a load of laundry in the dryer. (Yes, I know, I’m evil. I hope David Suzuki isn’t reading this.)
I searched the house. I searched the vehicle. I looked around the yard outside.
Pain clouded my heart as I realized you were probably sitting in the Wal-mart parking lot, flattened, covered in dew. Or, worse, you were picked up by some hardened buxom beauty with bleached blonde hair and a cig hanging out of her lips, stretchy polyester pants and a moustache. Oh, wait, that’s me, sans the buxom and the smokes.
It’s like we were never meant to be, dryer sheets. 
I hope we can still be friends. 
I guess I’m not ready for a relationship after all.  
No, there’s nobody else. It’s just me, a clothesline and a basket full of wet underwear.


  1. Where are you? I've been waiting here all night for you, cold and alone and frightened. Why did you treat me so cruelly? I was happy on my shelf with all my friends and relatives. I'm never going to trust blondes again!!!

  2. Just the laugh I needed this morning. You are hilarious. The guilt! I could feel it. I felt so bad for those poor dryer sheets. I almost wanted to hop in my car and drive to ON to look for them.

    What do you think about that, David Suzuki?

  3. I've never read anything written to a dryer sheet before.
    You might not believe that, but it's true.
    I swear, you can write about anything, Cathy. Start your novel!!!

  4. Please tell me this was composed while you were driving home. It's totally the sort of thing I'd do.

    The picture kind of looks like a bra waving in the wind.

  5. Thanks for the "Ode to the Dryer Sheet." Lauged my ass off.

    I'll bet even Suzuki AND Al Gore would forgive you (temporarily) if they read that.

    That clothesline me thinking that I've got a bunch of twice used tea bags to put out this afternoon...

  6. This is the most beautifully written ode to dryer sheets I have ever read. ANd I mean that with all sincerity. And Walmart too. Nicely done.

  7. "and then watched, with a Mountain Valley Fresh Scented tear in your eye"

    You're so funny!

    I am a bachelor launderer and have had a box of those things sitting on a shelf over the dryer for like 3 years. Don't know who bought them, or evidently, what I've been missing. :)

  8. You mean Post is into ancient grains now? What's the world coming to?

  9. Ahaha! This is hilarious, Cathy! I hope you didn't run over your blue-haired kid either. ;P

  10. I stopped using dryer sheets ions ago. I would lose them all the time, too! I think the underwear gnomes steal them with your one missing sock from the dryer. It was probably for the best.

  11. I don't use dryer sheets either - i use those goofy bumpy dryer balls. It takes several to bang the static out of clothes, but they work. Regardless, this is hilarious - one of those everyday occurrences that can be so infuriating! Nice job :-)

  12. I would make a detour for dryer sheets late on a weeknight, and if I left them, I might even go back! Funny write, Cathy. I enjoyed it.

  13. I found 'em, honey. I'll send 'em to ya once I've used them all. Cheers.

  14. I have a box of these dryer sheets you speak of. They have been sitting on the back of the dryer for as long as I can remember. I don't know how they got there and before now, I never even thought to toss one in. Now I'm sooo curious to see just what I've been missing. Funny Cathy!

  15. hilarious post! I got a coupon of stupid dryer balls I could send ya


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