Tuesday, February 5, 2013

Past Deadline: I Don't Hear Anything

Here is Past Deadline from Jan. 31/13 published in The Perth Courier.
I don’t hear anything
Saturday at my house is laundry day. Sometimes I like to squeeze in a load or two during the week, but in this particular week I saved it all up like any good hoarder and made Saturday an official Laundry Event™. My life is exciting that way.
I loaded up Ye Olde Clothes Washing Machine and was somewhat alarmed as it kicked into gear. It was making a strange noise. I stood there for a couple of minutes, hands on hips, scowling, and listened. Oh, dear.
Maybe it was because I hadn’t used it for a week and it was feeling sluggish? Maybe the water was a bit more frigid than usual (quite likely!) and it was complaining a little?
What to do? Do I stop the machine? Call upon Groom-boy? Call upon someone who might actually know what to do? Panic?
So I did what any high-functioning adult does these days – I turned to social media. I posted: “If I pretend I don’t hear the funny sound my washing machine is making, it’ll go away, right?”
I had a variety of responses, such as “Yes” and “Think positively.” One suggestion was to give it a “good kick” and another was to “stop doing laundry.”
My favourite by far was from the Rising King of One Liners, my little bro: “Turn the radio up. It works with my car.”
I may be regressing into my teenage years because more and more I am finding loud music to be a tonic for a lot of things. I have always liked to listen to music while working. When I need to do something terribly cerebral I turn to classical, but lately I have been relying on my running playlist to get the job done.
Back when my Stupid Foot™ wasn’t so stupid and I was happily engrossed in the adrenalin rush/stress-release that was running, I compiled a great collection of music on a playlist I call “Run Forrest Run.”
The title is inspired by the movie Forrest Gump – the part when Forrest decides to run across the country. See, running was never effortless for me, so sometimes 5K felt a bit like a marathon. “Run Forrest Run” is quite a mixed bag. It includes nostalgia stuff from the ’80s and ’90s, some unusual stuff, songs that remind me of dancing up a storm with friends at university and enough new stuff that if my kids stumble upon it they might say, “Hey, Mom’s not as dorky as we thought!” It has a lot of fast-paced material and a smattering of slower stuff in strategic spots to enable one to catch one’s breath as they pound out a 5K.
These days it is good walking music and also decent for the stationary bike, but I find I am turning to it often as I toil at my desk. If I am working on a big deadline or a large document, sticking in the earphones and playing “Run Forrest Run” is an excellent way to pass the miles. I mean time.
It also works well if one is trying to meet a deadline while a boisterous play date is happening elsewhere in the house, but this is only recommended if there is another competent adult in the vicinity who is paying attention to the chaos.
Just as I was about ready to crank up the tunes on laundry day, the washer stopped making the funny noise and all was well.
For at least the foreseeable future, it appears my Laundry Events will carry on as usual. Given the sheer volume of the task, however, I might do the loud music thing anyway….

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