I like doing laundry.
I’m not afraid to admit it.
It’s very satisfying, it can be relaxing, and recently it created a new mystery at my house. And it was a mystery that we were fortunate to solve.
I know that many people don’t like doing laundry or putting away clothes, but let me tell you about a few great things about doing laundry.
It’s rewarding – You have a big pile of dirty clothes, and soon you have a pile of clean clothes you can wear throughout the week. No other household chore really makes such a big difference in such a short amount of time.
The dirty clothes remind you of your adventures during the week – Muddy socks? Oh yeah, that was a fun day. Dressy shirt? I did great at work that day. Stain on your shirt? Oh yeah, I love lasagna.( Do we have any more?) Fashionable pants? I looked really good this week.
It’s a good excuse to watch television – I often fold clothes just as an excuse to watch television. Sometimes, it’s a good reason to move away from a program someone else is watching and go watch sports upstairs. Sometimes, I say I have to put laundry away and then watch television for a half hour and then put the laundry away.
The washer and dryer actually do all of the work – It’s really no work at all.
Warm clothes from the dryer feel great – In the winter, I love taking warm clothes out of the dryer and then folding them and putting them away.
You don’t have to think while you do laundry – I like jobs that don’t require thinking. Your mind can wander, you can watch television or you can listen to music. You’re not going to hurt yourself if you mess up the laundry. The worst thing that can happen is that you might mismatch socks.
And now the mystery!
So last week when I was doing some laundry, I noticed that something smelled bad in the kitchen (which is near our laundry room). I thought that one of the kids had heated up some food and that made the smell. So, I didn’t think much more about it.
My wife and I then went outside to work in the yard, and when we came inside, the smell was stronger. It smelled a lot like fish, so I assumed it was just whatever one of the kids was eating.
My wife took the extra step to ask, though, and found out that nothing had been cooked or warmed up in the last few hours, and there was no fish in the trash.
So why did the house smell like fish?
Checking online, my wife found that when you have problems with electrical wiring, it sometimes smells like cooking fish or rotten fish. That seemed odd, but apparently when you get sparks or overheating wires, it can melt the plastic near the wires, and the melting plastic smells like fish.
So, the two of us went smelling around the house, trying to smell the walls and outlets to see if any of them smelled like fish.
If that seems weird to read, it seemed weird to us at the time, too.
After smelling several outlets, though, we found that the outlet at the dryer smelled very strongly like fish. We also found that it was hot. In addition, the plug going into the outlet smelled like fish.
Even the clothes in the dryer smelled like fish! That was interesting and also frustrating. I had just washed them!
So, we unplugged the dryer and soon the smell went away.
We then called an electrician, who investigated the fishy outlet and found that we had melted wiring and plastic inside the wall. It looked burned and ugly and scary. We were lucky that it did smell like fish, because without the smell we would have never known about the electrical issue until we had a major problem, and possibly an electrical fire.
I’m thankful for the fishy smell in the house that day, and I’m thankful that doing laundry helped us find the problem before we had a fire. And that, my friends, is just one more reason why I like doing laundry.