Misadventures in Multi-Tasking


A new laundry mat opened near my day job, advertising both giant, debit card accepting machines and WIFi. My plan was simple: load up last winter’s quilts, blankets and the hallway rug, and my laptop, pit stop in the Caribou drive-thru for a cold press with vanilla, then head to the ‘mat, and get both writing and long-delayed domestic duties accomplished.

Reader, that plan was crap. Except for the coffee part. My cold brew was delish.
This new laundry mat is no place for a writer. Not a single work table or movable chair in the building. I wrote with my laptop propped precariously on a flipped over laundry basket crammed into a rolling basket. One foot needed to be perched on the rolling cart to keep it from its mission of rolling. The other needed to hover , serving as gatekeeper against all nosy folks trying to peek at my monitor.

The WIFI was a dirty, damn lie. Without the internet, people wander around and start conversations and double-down on their monitor peeking. I came to this laundry mat with a plan for clean bedding, re-writing a dull chapter opener, and MINDING MY OWN BUSINESS. 1,358 other folks jaunted in to a)not understand how washing machines work, b) talk as loudly as possible about inane subjects, thus harshing what could be the soothing rub-a-dub-dub of cycling water and frothing soap, c) talk at me about their shingles shot, the chicken wrap at McDonalds, other people’s tattoos, is there a Chick-fil-A nearby? Fox news (Lord, hear my prayers), and their kid who eats only peanut butter Captain Crunch.

I did not get that dull chapter completely re-written. But the dialogue sharpened up nicely, and my quilts are lavender fresh. Next time: headphones and resting bitchface.

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