OK, this may be boring to most of you, but I hope that in some ways that it might also be helpful. I don't know why it's on my mind, but just something that I need to get off my chest that has been bugging me for about the last 10, yes, 10 years.
As most of you know I work at a local dry cleaner/laundry and have for 13 years. During a conversation the other night with some of the best neighbors in the world, the conversation came around to getting clothes clean, little tips and tricks and such, and it just so happened that in my "steroidal stupor", I must admit that I really spilled my guts about things that really bother me in this line of work. Don't get me wrong, I like my job and all of that, but there are just a few things that really get on my nerves, but I just want to offer a few little tidbits of advice to people to make life easier on you and me when bringing in all of your lovely Christmas sweaters, pretty clothes and such before and after the holidays. I guess that I will start at my #1 piece of advice and go from there. OK, so here it is!
#1- Remember that we are not miracle workers, also that some things work and some things don't. Just like every day life for all jobs that anyone does. If you spill something on your garment, please, oh, please, try and remember what you spilled on it. An identifiable stain is a lot easier to get out than one that is unidentifiable. Also, remember that we do use chemicals, some of them may be harsh to the fabrics, so therefore, if we can just get it to look better with a more "faint" looking stain, it's not because we didn't try, it's because we don't want to ruin the fabric. We do make a big effort to please everyone, but not everyone can be pleased!
#2-Another important one! Please check all of your pockets and hidey holes for things of importance to you. Ladies, you know, that expensive Clinique lipstick, men, get those lighters, as the list goes on I will name a lot of the things that I have found over the last several years that need to be pulled out of pockets, used and unused condoms, crack cocaine, marijuana, sex toys, sex videos, ink pens (expensive ones at that), stacks of business cards, MONEY, credit cards, checks for large amounts of money, and the list goes on and on. We give back what we do find, but just as a security measure for yourselves, it's best to get this stuff out before you bring it to the cleaner. Oh, and another thing, especially to those of you who are married, pull those phone numbers out, especially, the ones written with little messages on the cocktail napkins, this goes for women also. Remember, when we "mark in" your clothes that there is a ticket with a NAME on it, so we know who you are, not personally know you, but we see you on the news sometimes, sometimes in the paper and stuff like that, so, basically, you are letting us into your utmost private life and giving us little bits of information that we really would prefer not to know about!
#3-ALLERGIES! This is not a real biggie but kind of important. Some people are animal lovers and that is strictly their preference, but some people also have bad reactions to animal hair, especially cat hair. My friend Beverly had cats and she used to buy the enormous lint rollers at PetSmart or somewhere that would pull the cat hair of with very little ease. It would be so helpful if people would take that pretty Christmas sweater, or that lovely blanket, rug or whatever it may be and save us a little work. I know, I know, that's what we get paid to do, but it also saves us time, and makes our job a little easier. While speaking of animals, and stains, please warn us if your animal has had an accident on any item that you bring in, don't just roll it up and drop it on the counter, and expect to pick it up the next day! Stains like this are harder to get out, and that also goes for the human variety of excrements. Yes, I've seen that also. Not to be gross, but someone, who shall remain nameless, had spent the weekend in Vegas and brought a shirt in one Monday morning,(this was years ago), he had imbibed in WAY TOO MANY adult beverages, vomited all over himself, stuck the shirt in a plastic bag, and brought it to be cleaned when he got back to town. Come on now, THROW THE FREAKING SHIRT AWAY! Who wants to mess with that kind of stuff? I certainly didn't, but did it anyway, because it was my job! I guess that it all boils down to courtesy, I guess it being that don't send stuff in that you wouldn't really want to mess with yourself.
#4- And probably the most important piece of advice! When you leave work on Friday, go home, kick your shoes off, try to forget about the troubles and woes of work, and partake of your choice of adult beverage, and don't puke on yourself and send the clothing in for cleaning!
Well that's all for now folks. You all don't have to take this stuff to heart, but maybe just as some helpful hints. Merry Christmas to all of you! VC