Doing Laundry: A Flowchart for Men

My clothing has two categories: dress shirts…and everything else.

Dress shirts get thrown in a basket to go to the cleaners. Everything else gets tossed into the washer and then into the dryer. There is no consideration for color or material or style. It’s all going in. I’ll mix some towels in there too sometimes. And I even measure out an appropriate amount of detergent if I’m feeling particularly attentive to detail.

Back in my bachelor days, that’s all there was to it. Doing laundry was about as stressful as taking out the trash, with roughly the same procedures–pick stuff up off the floor and put it into a circular receptacle once a week, or every other week depending on Netflix’s release schedule.

Then I got married.

I learned very quickly that my previous laundry methods were unacceptable practices for a domesticated husband, specifically my errant throwing of all wet things into a dryer and cranking it up. I legitimately had no idea that dryers had additional settings beyond “how long do you want to cook these boxer shorts?”

What most men don’t understand is that women’s clothing is just like women themselves: confusing, temperamental, and – like underwire – likely to get bent out of shape if you just toss everything into the dryer.

The problem is–unlike cooking, cleaning, and personal grooming–showing that you understand how to wash a woman’s clothes isn’t something that you’re likely to demonstrate during the dating phase of a relationship. Because of this, most women have to wait until they’ve moved in with a man to begin addressing this issue.

Lucky for you, I’ve been through all that, and I’ve got your back. In an effort to help both the ignorant men and the exasperated women out there, I put together a handy little flowchart:

dryer flowchart

Best of luck, gentlemen!

Lullabies and Acid Trips: Adventures in putting Baby Girl to bed

Ok, so I have to tell you about the most unintentionally terrifying children’s lullaby video ever posted to YouTube. But first, some background.

When I found the video I’m about to share with you, I was looking for a new bedtime routine because, shockingly, pillow fights and Kidz Bop sing-a-longs make poor precursors to sleep for two-year-olds. I knew I needed a more chill approach to the nighttime ritual if I ever wanted to watch Game of Thrones at its scheduled time ever again. So I decided lullabies might work. I mean, what could be more calming and less exciting than a lullaby?

Oh, sweet ignorance…

The most obvious place to look for a free lullaby was YouTube, and I discovered if you simply search “lullaby,” one of the first results is an EIGHT HOUR long video of nothing but instrumental lullabies.

Any rational, non-child having person would look at that search result and laugh at the thought of anyone needing EIGHT HOURS of lullaby music, and then that person would probably go climb a mountain, or fly to Paris, or go to the bathroom uninterrupted, or whatever other magical things people without kids get to do. But for me, and for every one of the parents who contributed to the OVER SEVENTY MILLION (as of now) views on that video, it was the promise of a much desired full night’s worth of peace and quiet. I started using this video immediately, fully believing I’d be providing its eighty-millionth view within the week.

At this point I have to mention that, as a requirement for uploading a video to YouTube, an uploader must include some form of…well, video. The eight hour lullaby video, while primarily serving as an auditory sleep aid, was still required to have some sort of image. So, for those of you who didn’t click the link above and watch yet, what do you imagine when you think of the video that would accompany eight hours of instrumental lullaby music?

Maybe a static image of a moon?

Perhaps a tranquil scene of a secluded landscape at night?

Pictures of those obnoxiously cute Precious Moments figurines holding teddy bears and sucking their thumbs?

Yeah, no.

Imagine what you might see if you were dropping acid at a Skrillex concert in the ninth circle of hell. That’s the visualization the uploader chose. No, really. I’m going to show you.

Oh, it starts out innocently enough:

lullaby01

Ok, not bad. I definitely associate this image with calm, quiet, “it’s time to sleep now” music…

Look at that baby with the “one long curly hair in the middle of an otherwise bald and perfectly circular head” stereotype. And there’s a heart! The only way this image could be any more innocent is if the words “Lullaby World” were written in comic sans.

But when the music starts, the visual immediately devolves into something out of a Jimi Hendrix fever dream:

lullaby02

Oh wow…uh, hello there accidental acid trip. But ok, ok…maybe the bright colors and spinning drug starfish are calming for infants?

I think I can taste the music…

Then the screen switches, and I realize there are other visuals…and the descent into madness begins…

lullaby04

The drug starfish kaleidoscope morphs into a ’60s psychedelic rock music video.

“Twinkle, twinkle little star / How I wonder if time is just, like, our perception of ourselves making love to the universe, man?”

Oh wait, I think the walls are starting to melt…

Then at 2:19…

lullaby06

Have you ever seen one of those science videos of a cross-section of human skin with blood pumping through the veins? Imagine the footage was spliced together by a serial killer and then shown through an old film reel projector with “Lullaby and Goodnight” playing in the background, and you get a fittingly ironic horror movie soundtrack.

lullaby08

6 minutes and 50 seconds in and…OH GOD! ACID SPIDERS! THEY’RE BURROWING UNDER MY SKIN! These insectoid-spider-brain-cell hybrid creatures literally fly at your while flailing their demonic hell-tentacles at your face. Even more terrifying is the fact that they have a predator-like invisibility that triggers in time with the music, so it’s dark and empty…and then…SURPRISE! ACID SPIDERS IN YOUR FACE!

And did I mention that as the acid spiders attack, you’re also falling endlessly into the reactor core of the Death Star? Because you are.

The most terrifying visual of all surfaces after 18 minutes of slowly eroding sanity…

lullaby09

GAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH!!

Look at it! LOOK AT IT! Who puts that image on a children’s lullaby video? Good god, man! And that just pops up in the middle of Frere Jacques.

Are you sleeping, Brother John?

Oh yeah, I’m definitely going to sleep while that hellspawn frogbeast leers at me with his unfeeling subwoofer eyes and bloodied electrified teeth. Like a baby.

As soon as Baby Girl saw this terrifying lizard monster oozing through the screen to devour her innocent soul, she couldn’t get enough of it. She demands the video now and refuses to go to sleep until she sees “the monster” sing to her. She literally calls it “the monster” because she doesn’t yet have the vocabulary to describe the abject horror she’s witnessing.

Now our new nighttime routine includes me, lying next to Baby Girl in her tiny toddler bed, holding the phone above us in an uncomfortable, twisted-carnival-crane-game-arm-falling-asleep claw grip so that we can both watch the front-running entry for “most awkwardly unfitting video to ever accompany children’s music since Kidz Bop started covering Ke$ha’s singles.”

And keep in mind that this video has OVER SEVENTY MILLION VIEWS. Seventy million seething death toads have materialized in children’s bedrooms over the past three years, and we parents have collectively decided that this is totally cool, as long as our kids go to sleep. This should show you how much parents value putting their kids to bed over the looming possibility of getting them therapy later in life.

Now Baby Girl and I must visit hell’s underground lullaby rave every night before bed. I don’t know how long it’ll last, but hopefully the next iteration of our nighttime ritual won’t include acid trip spiders, serial killer skin montages, or ghastly frog monsters.