Sunday, January 07, 2007

In Search of a Laundromat

It’s been a week since the garlic incident and it’s still not over. I think our laundry room and washing machine in particular still reek of the concentrated garlic insecticide I spilled a week ago.

I decided not to wash my clothes in that garlic-infested machine as long as it still stinks. So when I showed up to play duets with Deborah today, I had a large pillowcase full of clothes to wash while we played. She just laughed and showed me to their washing machine.

When her daughter Sarah came down the stairs with her laundry basket, she was rather surprised to find out she had to wait in line. She was even more incredulous when she found out why.

My husband set out some open containers of vinegar in our laundry room and has resumed washing his clothes in the garlic pit. He periodically asks me to smell his clothes coming out of there and I must admit they smell OK. But I just put my head inside the washing machine and the smell makes me cough.

I’m starting to wonder if I am carrying this to an extreme. The funny thing is I thought I had lost a lot of my sense of smell, but now I seem to be able to detect the slightest remainder of the garlic fiasco.

At least for now I’m searching for any washing machine but my own when I have dirty clothes. It remains to be seen how long this will last.

I’m steering clear of the dryer too as evidenced by the drying rack that now holds my laundered clothes upstairs. My husband commented about how stupid it looks, but I said, “Who really cares?” thinking to myself, “I’m not going to smell like a garlic bud.”


Anonymous Anonymous said...

Try a good de-greaser like Dawn and mix with lemon and run a wash cycle. See if that helps.

Also, look at the bright side, if you smell like garlic, none of those vampires at work will mess with you!

6:00 PM  
Blogger Barbara said...

OL -- We've run a bunch of cycles with white vinegar in the washing machine and the smell still persists.

I love your comment about the vampires at work!

6:14 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Try shaking baking soda in the machine. Then Kosher salt. Squeeze fresh lemon juice and rub with the lemon half until the salt is dissolved. Let sit for 15 minutes. Rinse with hot water.

9:13 PM  
Blogger Kristin said...

I'm still a vinegar fan, but if you get desperate, give me a call. I'd love to introduce you to the experience that is my local laundromat. I'm sure we'd have a blast.

10:08 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Kate's baking soda treatment sounds good. Baking soda absorbs odors - try even running a couple of cycles with a good dose of baking soda. Let the second tub of water sit for a few minutes.

I hang my wash on a rack like that all the time when it doesn't finish drying on the line during the short winter days.

6:48 AM  
Blogger Reya Mellicker said...

Bleach. That's what you need. It's the great leveler of all smells.

A quarter cup of bleach, the machine set on LARGE load, give it a spin. Nothing beats bleach, not even garlic.

9:09 AM  
Blogger Mother of Invention said...

Lemon? Vinegar? Baking Soda?

What a DILEMNA!!!

9:12 AM  
Blogger Barbara said...

You just don't understand the ferocity of this garlic! I have used a whole bottle of Clorox, a whole bottle or more of white vinegar. I haven't tried Dawn, baking soda, or lemon yet.

I think it may just be a matter of time and those of you who know me know how impatient I can be...

Thank you all for your many suggestions!

9:46 AM  
Blogger Richard said...

I still recommend something with oxygen in it. Often comes with the name Oxy-pro, Oxy-clean, etc.

Use hot water and let it stand.

Mind you, it may be difficult to get it out of all the plumbing.

6:42 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

You have to read the chapter GARLIC IS GOOD in Ruth Reichl's second memoir COMFORT ME WITH APPLES. Alice Waters used to have a garlic festival in Berkeley every year at Chez Panisse I don't know if it still goes on...and Reichel describes a trip to Truckee, CA and a sensual garlic massage (she was not the receipent of said massage). To quote Monsieur Les (the owner of La Vielle Maison the resturant In Truckee that specialized in garlic)..."There is nothing better for the skin than aioli...the Arlesiennes massage it into their skin to repel insects and promote suntan. And what a heavenly smell they have..."

10:59 PM  

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