Laundry room Nazi
Tuesday, October 02, 2007, 6:24 PM

Big apartment community + only six washers and dryers = I must be a drunken gnat crimping your clothes washing agenda.


Envy me, apartment renters. There is a live laundry Nazi in my building!

I was about to drop off a second load of laundry one Monday night around 5:45 (I'd just dropped off my first one not two minutes ago because I'm about six hopscotch steps away from the laundry room). When I got back to the laundry room with the second load, the door that had been open minutes ago was closed. The room had been empty when I'd dropped off my first load.

I trudged back to my apartment for my keys (again, four hopscotch steps away if you're a tall guy, maybe six if you're a short girl), opened the door and propped it open like it usually is. I walked over to one of the empty washers and a woman who was in front of one of them darted over to close the door with a whack. When she turned around, she told me that the empty washer I was about to put my clothes into was hers.

Hunh? What happened to possession is nine-tenths of the law? And, er, first come first serve?

Thing is, she wasn't nice about this at all. Her attitude suggested that I might as well have lifted the lid of one of the in-motion washers and pooped into it.

But unless Casper the Ghost was washing his invisible sheets, the washer was empty. There was nothing on top of the washer or in front of the washer to indicate it wasn't free. I suck at mathematics, but this was a no brainer.

"Cough, cough," she said. "I was here first."

I suddenly felt Nazi-like myself. "Nope, I don't think so. Obviously, I was here first."

She got verbally upset with me because I didn't let her have the empty washer, began slamming things around and muttering in an alien language about how rude I was, etc.

Feeling just as beastly, I fueled the fire. "I don't think I need any lessons in etiquette from you."

A few minutes later is when I exercised the PITA syndrom: It's easier to be a pain in the ass than to be a recipient of a pain in the ass. I had things to do around the complex, and each time I passed the laundry room, I opened the door she wanted to keep closed.

Hah, hah, hah! How's about some passive-agressive helpings today, Miss Manners?

When I came back to put my laundry into the dryer, the woman was still there. As I approached the row of dryers, she darted over in front of me and said, "These three are mine, I was here first, you can't use them."

All three dryers were empty.

Her loads of wash were still in the washers.

This is when I reminded her I paid rent just like she did and was also entitled to the machines. First come first serve, you know? Even if you're stupid enough to save all six loads of your laundry for one night. Your problem, not mine.

I told her in the year-and-a-half I'd been living here, I'd never had someone in the laundry room act as she had. She said she'd lived in the building for over ten years and had seniority.

"Gee," I asked her, "Why couldn't you have said that from the start?"


There's a Want Ad for her whereabouts. Two 64-ounce containers of Surf are the reward for nailing the identity of the Laundry Room Nazi.

Nah, not really, but I have it on good authority that her Nazi neo-winning ways are coming to an end.

1 Did the Unhingey Jiggy Engage in Unhingenosity
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