The Horrors of Public Laundry

The day that I can own a personal washer and dryer will probably be one of the best days of my life. It has been five years now of public laundry machines and after today, I am just freaking fed up with it. Throughout the years of my undergrad education, my living situation has always improved, but my laundry situation has always worsened. This year takes the cake. And all my quarters.

My building was sold to a small-town Ma and Pa agency in Madison before I moved in – without my consent. I was informed just days before moving in of the change. Rent stayed the same but the laundry situation would no longer be electronically operated with a re-loadable card like in the past. Costs would increase to $1.25 per wash and $1.25 per dry and you would have to use quarters. I’ve made it this far in college with never having to save quarters, and now I feel the pain and agony of every college student that would hoard quarters like it was their job.

“Oh, the change from my coffee is $2.28? Can you make that out in quarters?”

“Oh, my bar tab is 4.60? Let me see if I have 60 pennies quick, cuz these quarters ain’t goin’ NOWHERE.”

“Wait, you want those quarters? Cuz I’ll totally take them if you don’t.”

The only good thing about my public laundry room is that NO ONE is ever using it. At first I thought it was cuz the laundry is in the basement of my historic Mansion Hill apartment and therefore looks like something straight out of a Stephen King novel.IMG_20130227_101042


Where the hell does that lead?????

Where the hell does that lead????

But ya know why the laundry machine is always open? Cuz it sucks. It doesn’t really clean your clothes and it doesn’t smell fresh and nice and no one wants to use it. You are basically paying $1.25 to let your clothes marinate in hot water. If the water is even hot. And then there is the useless dryer. No sensor, no nothing. You get 30 minutes max on that thing and if you want your clothes anywhere beyond dripping wet, you have to do 2-3 cycles. Which increases the cost significantly.

Then there was today. I had exactly one hour to get laundry done. Of course the dryer failed to dry my clothing. I was about to leave for an extended period of time and couldn’t keep checking or adding quarters, so I was forced to dump my wet clothing out all over my apartment floor and run out the door. When I came back later I had forgotten all about it and was worried I had been robbed.  Clothing everywhere.


Public laundry that you have to pay for is a pain in the ass enough. But I recently found out you have to worry about diseases being transmitted through laundry machines. A close friend of mine has a roommate (names nor physical features will be given to avoid discrimination). This roommate always hand washes her underwear. Finally fed up with under pants hanging all over the apartment, my friend asked her roommate why she never washed her underwear in the washing machine. The roommate proceeded to explain that she didn’t want to get pregnant or get diseases.

Back that Tide train up. Say what?


The roommate went on to explain that boys wash their underwear in there. And boys, as we all know, are dirty. In many, many ways. And those dirty (naughty) boys wash their underwear in there. And then she would wash her underwear in there. And then she could potentially get pregnant.

Cuz that’s how that stuff works. Last I checked. You’ve got your birds, your bees, and your laundry machines.

Yup, that sounds about scientifically correct to me. I do recall a sex ed class in 9th grade that talked about the dangers of Washer Drum Babies.

Happens every day.

Explains why the rate of teen pregnancy has gone up so much in the last decade. Girls and boys have been sneaking out of their parents homes to caucus in public laundromats. Washing their under garments together. What a slippery slope of moral sin, I tell ya…

I once lived with a girl who also hand washed her underwear. I just got used to seeing be-dazzeled leather strap-y un-mention-ables in the sink. See-thru lacy butts. G-strings with bows. No big thang. Most of those fancy underpants can run $15 a pop and ya gotta be gentle with them. But now I am wondering if my old roommate was in on the dangers of public laundry machines too. I can’t believe all these years I was putting myself at risk. I would hate to wash my underwear in a public machine and wake up with herpes.


I am thinking someone could take advantage of this recent medical discovery and create a market for laundry condoms. Giant disposable latex liners that you could place in the washing machine before use.

We all should really be practicing safe laundry.

But honestly, I’d really just like my laundry to come out of the dryer dry. Can we at least start there?

About Melissa Faulkner

1. If I blog, someone will eventually discover me. 2. If someone eventually discovers me, I will become rich and famous. 3. If I blog, I will become rich and famous. Follow me for shorter, daily doses! @melisslyss
This entry was posted in Uncategorized and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s