Okay, it may not be spring yet, but here in Boulder we’ve been having a two-week warm streak. Yesterday, in 70 degrees, I hung laundry on the line strung across our second-floor deck while house finches trilled in the pines just off the patio and red-shafted flickers called noisily from the neighbor’s yard.
So here are ten reasons to keep shlepping wet laundry out the door–and in my case up the stairs–to the clothesline:
- Sunshine is free.
- So is wind.
- The clothes smell terrific when you bring them in. Nothing like sun-dried sheets to crawl into at night.
- The wind blows the pet hair off the laundry (except for the white hair on the darks and the black hair on the whites).
- Antiquated homeowners’ agreements that prohibit clotheslines need to be updated anyway. For instance, a “Right to Dry” bill is making its way right now through the Virginia state legislature; the bill will prohibit community associations from banning clotheslines. See Project Laundry List‘s report.
- You can thumb your nose at the class snobbery that led to banning clotheslines in some communities in the first place.
- You could save 10 to 15% of your electricity bill every month because your dryer is the third-largest electricity hog in your house, after the fridge and the lighting.
- Your clothes will last longer because they’re not tumbling against each other and melting in high heat.
- By using less energy, you contribute less to global warming.
- It’s a great way to do meditation. You can say hello to the trees or birds or grass or sweet soil under your feet while you’re outside.
And in another day or two when the weather is freezing again—typical for March (and April and May) where I live along the edge of the Rockies—I’m told clothes will still dry outdoors, as long as the sun is shining. Brrr! Maybe I’ll opt for an indoor rack. I like my meditations warm.
WRITING POSTSCRIPT: For poetry relevant to this post, see the Poets Online site. They publish a writing prompt each month, and poets submit their results to the site. A recent prompt was “Laundry,” and some wonderful contributions can be found on their December 2008 archive page, including poems about hanging wash on a clothesline.