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Thursday, June 28, 2012

Pressing Matters


I broke a promise today that I made to myself almost ten years ago.  It all stemmed from a poor judgement call I made, and resolved never to make again.  


Now, I consider myself a fairly smart person, and usually when I do something stupid or thoughtless it's because I'm too lazy to do it correctly, not necessarily because I don't understand how it could be done better. And while I still consider myself 'smart' after I've completed whatever ridiculous inexcusable thing. . . a small part of my brain says, "That was stupid."  I compartmentalize that part of my brain and try not to think about it again, drowning it in alcohol.


So ten years ago (or so) I was on my way somewhere.  I can't recall where, but it's irrelevant. I had just put on a button-down long-sleeve shirt. It was pressed and neat but lengthy closet storage had left behind a slight crease partway up the front. It was such a tiny little thing, but it was irritating, and I felt like it made sense to iron it out.


Still, it was such a tiny little wrinkle! I mean really, to set up an ironing board, warm up the iron, doff the shirt and press it and . . . for this tiny little wrinkle. . . it just seemed like much ado about nothing. Regardless the wrinkle bothered me. 


I decided that rather than getting out the ironing board and getting undressed it would be soo much faster if I just ironed it while it was on my body. I know. . . sounds stupid, right? But I assure you I'd done it many times with good results. I almost always wear a tshirt underneath a long sleeve shirt, and if you move along quickly enough you hardly feel the heat reach your skin before you've moved on, the shirt rendered wrinkle free, the ironing board remaining untouched against the wall of the laundry room.


This particular tiny little wrinkle, small though it was, was just a stubborn little cuss. It was obvious that I was going to have to take the damn shirt off UNLESS. . . and just like that, before I had a chance to even really think about it, my finger pushed the steam jet button and directed a pressurized burst of steam out of six little steam nozzles spaced evenly along the arc of the iron's heating surface. Boy was I surprised! So surprised was I in fact that I invoked the name of the Lord and discussed loudly and colorfully my lack of judgement at great length, interjecting terms for forbidden sex acts and jumping up and down for good measure.  


The aftermath of the affair was that I had six blisters spaced evenly in a smooth arc up the flat of my belly for at least a week before they burst and time healed them, and a vow never to do something that stupid again.


That was then.


This morning after breakfast was finished and my plate and coffee mug were rinsed and ready to be loaded into the dishwasher, I climbed the steps to the bathroom and prepared to brush my teeth.  In one hand I held the toothbrush.  In the other hand I held my iPhone.  I stared incredulously at the word "tuatera" (blogger's spellcheck doesn't know wtf it means either, Karen) that Karen V had played to the tune of 63 points on Words With Friends and began typing the message, "Tuatera?  Really?" to her when it happened.  A dollop of drool-diluted toothpaste escaped the gentle confines of my mouth and dripped from my lips where it glanced off my shirt-clad stomach to land on the counter.  


File photo
I shook my head and put the iphone down, spitting out the toothpaste and dripping water on the spot on my shirt.  I daubed a bit of it with a wet fold of toilet paper and the stain was gone, replaced by a puckered bit of wet shirt.  I grabbed my wife's blow dryer and dried the spot away, but the pucker remained.  And it looked ridiculous.


I got more water. . . I pooched out my stomach as far as it would go and wetted my belly with water from the tap, then dried that off, thinking it would act almost like an impromptu ironing board.  But it didn't.


I thought about the steam jet incident then.  I went downstairs intending to iron my shirt.  I was at war with myself.  Do I take off the shirt?  In the end my laziness once more beat the shit out of my common sense, and I heated up the iron, rubbing it over my belly, careful not to push the steam jet button.  Mission accomplished, the pucker was gone.  


So. . . what lesson did I learn?  I learned that it's OKAY to iron your shirt with it on.  It was a lesson I forgot nearly a decade ago when I gave myself second-degree burns, but as time dulled that painful memory, this newest triumph has overshadowed it completely.  But I also learned that it's ONLY okay if you don't push the steam jet button.  So it's almost like a real lesson.

44 comments:

  1. Isn't tuatera a lizard? Yeah, I'm pretty sure it is.

    Also, I'm really hoping you're not allowed to dress the children. I mean, what if they get wrinkled?

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    1. if the children are wrinkled they get thrown in the dryer with wet clothes to "fluff them up". I mean, I'm not a COMPLETE moron.

      And how the hell should I know what tuatera is?? Nobody knows.

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    2. A tuatera is a reptile. Yes... I do know this for a fat. My brother was heavy into the herpetology thing (the study of reptiles, Jim) and we had all KINDS of lizards, snakes, turtles, and God-knows-what as pets. My brother still keeps a 5-foot python. Ugh.

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  2. Wow, you are *hot* in the morning. Smart, maybe not so much. But hot.

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    1. Well. . . that's an old picture. . . you know, before pregnancy stole my figure. But thank you.

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  3. WHY wouldn't you iron your skin? You're old. The shirt was just an excuse. A fall back. I'm sure I NEVER tried this going into a meeting with my old Bux RVP.
    Try ironing your boobs next time and we'll discuss. Your boobs, not mine.

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  4. You know, if you switch up your routine a little - just a little - this can all be rectified.

    Brush teeth BEFORE dressing. That way, if toothpaste drips, it drips on nightclothes. Who cares about toothpaste on the t-shirt you wore to bed? No one.

    I think you have the best hair of all my imaginary friends. It has such character.

    Also, I'm glad you didn't end up in the burn unit today for using yourself as an ironing board. (Psst, I've totally done that before, too. As long as you don't hit the steam jet, it works JUST FINE. I don't even own an ironing board. I use my kitchen table. Or my BODY. That is when I actually iron, which is probably once every 10 years.)

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    1. See? We're all stupid TOGETHER!

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  5. I just refuse to iron. But then again, I don't have to wear button-down dress shirts either, lucky me!

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  6. Cute hair. Your brain..not so much lol.

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  7. I use to use my body as an ironing board all the time a million years ago when I worked at a bank and had to look nice and unwrinkled. I hate ironing and haven't touched an iron since then. Water rub downs lesson the wrinkles good enough. Or the spray stuff whenever I can find where I stashed it.

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    1. spray de-wrinklifier? Hmmm. . .

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  8. I ironed my pants while I was wearing them...waaayyyy back in high school (went to private school w/ strict dress code). It went about as well as your experience 10 years ago. I swore off irons ever since...especially because I can't seem to make anything that needs to be ironed look any better w/ one. Ugh. Glad you escaped bodily harm this time.

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    1. We're virtually an iron free house now. . . my wife pawned the iron for a dry cleaner.

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  9. lol at "stubborn little cuss".

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  10. LOVE it!!!

    I'm thinking Flann and I should play Words. Dude! I'm also thinking brush teeth before dressing and you have no back up shirt? Wouldn't that have been the lesson the first time around?!

    You're welcome for the blog material and if anyone was wondering- Jim has kicked my ass twice at Words. I'm going for a comeback.

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    1. Flann KNEW what tuatera was. . . I don't think it would be a good idea to play against her.

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  11. Steaming yourself was pretty dumb--I mean, you're not a piece of broccoli or a green bean. BUT, I picked up a pan last night that had just come out of the 425-degree oven...without an oven mitt on. Uh huh. So smart. Thank goodness my hand was wet and stopped me from getting seriously burned.

    Also, brush your teeth while you're still naked.

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    1. Oh, and your hair is awesome.

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    2. Yeah, it's dumb. I can't brush my teeth while I'm still naked. I mean. . . I could, but the reason I don't is because i brush my teeth after I eat. Here's the routine: Wake up, shower, dress, get kids up, make breakfast, eat breakfast. . . brush teeth. I brush my teeth after breakfast because. . . you do that. You brush after you eat. You don't brush THEN eat, it makes no sense. Plus also, I think my kids would freak out if I ate naked with them and then brushed teeth, so I feel like I sorta need to keep the routine as is and just not play words with friends while I brush. THAT was my mistake.

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    3. Gotcha. Routines are important, especially if they involve NOT sitting down naked to eat breakfast with your kids.

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  12. you mean you dont get one of the kids to press your clothes , what the heck do your have kids for ?

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    1. I. . . I don't know. Emma is starting to pull her weight, but she's so tiny there's really not much of her weight to pull. Maybe when she's a little older. She's on flower watering, toast making, and table setting currently.

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  13. Oh Jim...if you could see me today. My skirt is a wrinkly mess. I walked out of the house a wrinkly mess and haven't thought about it since. And then I read your post and I'm still like 'meh, screw it' - it's too damn hot these days to iron.

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    1. It was so humid and hot here you could have walked outside and just let nature steam you.

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  14. Men. So silly sometimes. Thanks for the out loud laughter your post generated.

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    1. I believe the comment section of this post will prove that lazy stupidity is NOT a gender specific trait, madam! Hmph!

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  15. Here's a tip from personal experience. Put a folded handkerchief under your shirt on the spot you have to iron. Less risk of getting burned that way. Still, even then I'd try to avoid pushing that steam jet button.

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    1. The whole reason I got in the steam jet mess in the first place is that I was too lazy. What makes you think I'd go through all the trouble of getting a folded handkerchief for protection? It's like you don't know me at ALL.

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  16. I can't remember the last time I pulled out an iron. I always pull the offending item off and stuff it in the dryer on steam. Although the last time I did that I was 1/2 naked in my laundry room and someone walked up the drive and saw me....our laundry room is near the front of the house which I still blame the past owners as a design flaw. I don't know where I'm going with this anymore or if I even had a point.....oh well.

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    1. what were they doing walking up your drive? PEEPING TOM!!!!

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  17. I don't even own an iron... that's why god created the dry cleaner.

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  18. (Testing, testing.) I'm impressed with your determination, even though it did result in probable scar tissue. I myself rarely ever wear anything but t-shirts, as I am a lazy, no good, roustabout. So good for you for going somewhere fancy enough that you needed a real shirt!

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    1. Not sure why you always go to spam, but I had to rescue this one too!

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  19. Chuckle...
    I might do something like that. Not that i iron much...but totally I love short cuts

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    1. You should. But don't push the steam jet button.

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  20. Totally DO NOT iron either. I'm with Lizbeth on this one... put it back in the dryer with a wet washcloth... good as new!

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