poetessa

Diary, musings on life, people, interests. Posting my poetry

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Location: Lacey, WA, United States

I have a Certified Artist/Teacher degree with the National Society of Decorative Painters. Taught decorative painting, color theory, calligraphy and other art related classes for 12 years. I enjoy using my artistic talents, especially to update furniture and repurpose found items. I am married to the world's most wonderful husband. We celebrated our 48th anniversary this year (2016). We have raised six children, three boys, three girls. Have 10 grandchildren. Through the NSDP I have paintings in the White House, Blaire House and Smithsonian Institute. I was given the honor of being the Chair of the Pacific NW, "Breeze and Brush" Decorative Painting Convention. What fun we had! I like keeping healthy and enjoy life. I love humor and people. God has been good to me!

Saturday, August 20, 2005

Wringer Washing Machines

Hi Ailea!! I won't bother Von on the HOW site for a while. I feel guilty infringing on his territory. I like the interaction and I'm convinced, it has something to do with being artistically talented, that designers have an off-the-wall sense of humor that I appreciate. I hope your studies are going well and you will be extremely successful in your field. Let me hear from you often and don't feel like you're rambling, everyone needs an outlet.

So, wwwwwhhhhhhheeeeerrrrreeeee are the commentors? I don't think this Blog is going anywhere or maybe it's just too boring. When I have the capacity to post pictures on the site maybe that will be helpful.

Another gorgeous day, 78 degrees, perfect! Should have been doing something fun but instead I worked inside most of the day. We did eat lunch on the patio to the accompaniment of the neighbor's rented gas wood splitter. They had several trees cut down and he kept some of the wood for their fireplace insert.

Maybe that's why I didn't care to spend too much time outside. Kind of ironic, they cut all the trees down, no shade, so he had to erect a large umbrella to sit under while he split the wood. There's humor in everything. Now their dogs have to lay in the shade of the garage and the back of their house is baking (the bedroom side).

I worked on some of my poetry today. The mood comes and goes and some of the strangest things inspire me. I was thinking about all the times I did the laundry for my mother on an old Kenmore (Sears brand) wringer washer. When my friends were swimming or at the show, there was Carol filling the machine with water as hot as I could get it, sorting the clothes by color; white, light, medium and dark colors, rugs and rags.

I would add the detergent, a little bleach and the first few loads would be the whites for 15 minutes of sloshing and chugging. The machine had a handle on the side that you would push, just like the clutch on a car, to start and stop it. I can still remember the sounds and smells of washday.

While the wash was glugging back and forth I would fill the sink with cold water and position the wringers just right. I wuld turn the machine off and I would have to lift the clothes out with a broomstick because the water was too hot to put your hands in. Then I would gingerly pull the cloth off the end of the broomstick, start the rollers and guide the cloth into the center. You had to be careful not to get too much cloth in one place or the wringers would get stuck and stop. The clothes would go through the wringers and into the cold water for rinsing. Usually you would stand by the sink and dunk the clothes up and down in the cold water and feed them through the wringers, then empty the sink, refill with cold water and do the whole thing over again. Then a final journey through the wringer into the laundry basket.

While all of this interesting and exciting rinsing was going on you would have started the second load of white or lightly colored clothes. Then it was a trip out the back door to the clotheslines. They had to be wiped down with a damp cloth first, otherwise you would have black marks on the corners of the clothing you were hanging up that overlapped the lines where you put the clothespins. I would shake out the clothes one by one and hang them up. Back inside to repeat the steps for each load. The medium colors went in next, when they were done the darks were washed and last of all the very dirty items like rugs and cleaning rags. Numerous trips to the clotheslines. You also had to be careful that there weren't any earwigs in the clothespins, they loved to hide in the little nooks and crannies and would pinch you. Ick!

The last step in the washing cycle was to empty the dirty water out of the machine. You were lucky if you had a hose and pump but the one we had didn't. It was emptied by placing a bucket under the spout, turning the valve to let the water out, shut the valve off, empty the bucket.....over and over again, probably about 25 times. The machine had to be rinsed and wiped dry before you could roll it into the storage area until the next wash day. You didn't wear loose clothing and were never careless around the wringers. I was pinched many a time. Wringers and earwigs...washday nemesis!!

That was only half the job. When the clothes were dry they were taken down, folded and put away. When the job was finished I was too tired to do anything else. One of my fondest memories was getting into a bed that had fresh, air dried sheets. They smell so good!! I miss that, I don't miss the washing/rinsing part at all. We didn't get an automatic washer and dryer until I was around 16.

Enjoy the rest of the weekend and God bless.

Later

Carol

Here's one of my poems that fits well with the subject.

WASHING
By Carol Glitschka 10/24/98

SEPARATE THE WHITE FROM COLORED,
THEN COLORED FROM EACH OTHER.
REDS, GREENS, PURPLES, BLUES
VARIED TONES AND SHADES AND HUES.

NOW YOU HAVE YOUR LITTLE PILES
HERE COMES THE REAL TEST
SORT EACH COLOR NOW BY FABRIC
WHICH TEMP IS THE BEST?

HOT IS GREAT FOR STURDY THREADS,
BUT ONLY IF THEY'RE WHITE.
LUKEWARM FOR THE COLORFAST,
OF COURSE, TO KEEP THEM BRIGHT!

COLORS THAT RUN YOU WASH IN COLD,
THEY USUALLY COME OUT RIGID,
WELL, YOU WOULD TOO IF YOU'D BEEN SLOSHED
AROUND IN SOMETHING FRIGID.

DELICATE YOU WASH BY HAND
YOU KNOW - DAINTY, FRAGILE, LACY?
AFTER THESE INSTRUCTIONS
ARE YOU GETTING KIND OF SPACEY?

DON'T THROW THOSE NYLONS IN THE WASHER!
NOT EVEN JUST A FEW,
YOU'LL WIND UP WITH A CHINESE KNOT
A SAILOR COULDN'T UNDO!

A TERRY TOWEL MIXED IN WITH DARKS
WILL MAKE YOU WANT TO SCREAM.
YOU'LL FIND A FIELD OF LITTLE PILLS
ON EVERY INCH AND SEAM.

WHAT'S COMMON TO THE UNINFORMED
TAKES A MASTER TO PERFORM.
THE WASHING, CLEAN AND FOLDED
ALL DRY AND SOFT AND WARM.

1 Comments:

Anonymous Helen said...

I love the searous whimsey of this poem. As a child I helped my Mom do the laundry. We had an old ringer washer and double zink tubs on a stand on the back porch. We used rainwater we caught rain barrels. Clorox came in brown glass bottels and there was a new face cloth or hand towel in the box of Fab detergent. Our cloths lines were tied between the shed and the two mulberry trees in the yard. In summer we could not hang clothes on the part of the lines just under the trees when the berries were ripe. They could fall and hit the clothing leaving a mulberry purple stain. Birds who sat in the trees eating the fruit were also a hazard. In winter the clothes would freeze on the lines and had to be brought in and hung on the wooden folding rack to finish up the drying process. In the winter the round convex lid of the washer made a wonderful snow sled if you first took the screwdriver and removed the handel from the top. Thanks for your wonderful poem. It brought back all thoes old memories of when washing clothing was a large job ending in another large one the next day to iron the wrinkled clothing. It was a job I shared with my wonderful mom who taught me how to appreciate doing a job well and enjoy myself while doing it. With Regards. Helen

5:59 AM  

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