Do you know the website www.peopleofwalmart.com? If you don’t go check it out, please. It is a collection of photos of the most ridiculous people on the face of the planet that just so happen to be shopping at Wal-Mart. I personally think there needs to be one for the people of the laundry mat, because going into the coin op is always an adventure.
I chose this specific coin-op because it’s in a nice location, very clean, everything is white, they have good machines and there is always someone working there so it feels safe. But, no matter how clean and safe one is they are always jam packed with weirdo’s and this day was no exception.
Pulling into the parking lot it was just like every other visit, there were not very many cars and the front door propped open to allow a nice breeze cooling off the indoors. I park and pop the trunk of my little car to pull out the laundry, and as I step out I notice there is someone in the SUV next to me. There is a handicapped sticker in the car so naturally I assume someone here is going to be mentally or physically challenged, but don’t forget what happens when you assume things. The door to the vehicle opens and out pops this young kid, he was a little shorter than me, had sandy blonde hair, a stained t-shirt and cargo shorts on, of course he feels the need to speak to me, and I don't handle small talk very well. Our conversation goes like so:
Kid: “Hey you got a number?”
Kid: “Well why not”
Me: “I don’t have one I just moved here.”
This was a blatant lie but he was like 14 and by the way he was mumbling and acting I put the pieces together in my head that he was the challenged one in the group.
Kid: “Oh well can I take you out sometime?”
Me: “No I’m too old for you.”
Kid: “Well can I at least just have a hug”
This only served to cement my early thoughts that he was the challenged one because they generally say things like that.
Kid: “Your mean.” and slams the door shut.
As you can tell he was acting completely absurd, I do not have issues with people who have mental problem, I actually volunteer at a riding facility specializing in handicapped horsemanship lessons, and for everyone that has spent time around people with disabilities you very well know there are certain types of behavior that you can’t allow or they just keep acting that way. They think it’s funny, and you have to be stern just like you are with children. I wasn’t mean I was short.
So I venture indoors to find these two women washing laundry, crazy right doing laundry in laundry mat what was I thinking. One was older, I’d say about 70, we will call her Cat Woman, she had on a faded button down denim shirt with flowers and patterns, pink floods and flip-flops but her purse was outstanding! It was picnic table-cloth patterned, with fabric eggs and bacon sewn on it, I was mildly jealous of her find. The second woman, referred to as Rosey, had hair pulled tightly up in a bun, an oversized yet to short t-shirt on, with denim cut of shorts and white sneaks. Rosy was an interesting woman she spoke very loudly (basically yelling over the noise) on her cell phone and taking up half of the machines while folding a mountain of clothing. I was minding my own business watching my laundry spin round and round, no matter how inconspicuous I try and remain these people always want to talk to me. Here she comes, over to my side of the folding table smacking and popping the gum in her mouth looks right at me and so begins our exchange:
Rosey: “Hey I’ve seen you here before, how many kids do you got?”
Me: “None, I’m too young to have children.”
Rosey: “Yeah I thought you was. Yep I just got divorced, was gonna move to Wichita but those plans got slowed up. I’ve washed 32 loads of laundry today isn’t that somethin’? I moved all my stuff into my mom’s house, she’s standing right over there (she points at Cat Woman) but she’s kind of a pack rat and has lots of cats. I put all our clothes in black trash bags in the garage but the cats peed on everything. I’ve still got more that needs washed though. I even bought her a different washer and dryer but Cat Woman’s got too much crap. She won’t let you keep the door open long enough to do anything ‘cause the woman’s scared one of the hair balls will get loose.”
Trying to wrap my mind around why in the world this woman would tell me these things, why would you ever tell a stranger cats peed all over your clothes!? The only thing I can muster up right now is:
Me: “Oh wow, yeah that’s no good at all.” I’m sure the expression on my face spoke volumes.
In the meantime the kid walks in, waves at me, says something to Rosy that I can’t quit hear over the commotion of washers and dryers, then makes his way back out to the car. Once he is gone, she very non-shalantly says to me:
Rosey: “Yeah my oldest boy, the one that was just in here, he’s sittin out in the car trippin’ but I’m making him sweat it out.”
As you can imagine I know what tripping means but cannot for the life of me think that she is using it the way I think she is… or is she?
Rosey: “Oh yeah, he smoked something he shouldn’t have, BUT it was legal.”
(Oh yeah, I forgot, because it was legal it’s ok to do.)
Rosey: “Let’s just say, the package it was in said not for human consumption. So to teach him a lesson I’m making him sweat it out. Yep the boys trippin in the car.”
What would you do if someone said this to you? Out of no where?? I was riding a fine line of trying to decide whether I should laugh or be concerned, either way I was in complete shock. Oh and did I mention that the tripping son is also the one that hit on me in the parking lot? Now it makes since why I thought he was mentally challenged… it was because he was 14 and TRIPPING. IN THE CAR.
Rosey continued to chat me up as her other 10 loads were washing and drying and I was hurriedly folding my laundry to get out of there. When I was finished she says:
Rosey: “Hey girl, can’t wait to do some more clothes witcha! I love having laundry mat friends.”
Me: “Oh yeah, me either.”
This was truly the most unique trip to the coin-up for me, and honestly say that I hope nothing tops it in the future. I am way too reserved for conversations like this. They say a picture is worth a thousand words and I truly wish I had a picture of this clan for The People of the Laundry Mat.
- Affectionately, Tornado Aly
....I think it may be time to start shopping for my own machines....