Sunday, June 28, 2009

Co-op Laundromat

Every so often, I need to make a trip to the local laundromat to use their large capacity washers as the home/apartment washers are too small for comforters. Since my parents are coming this week and won't have their furniture until the following Monday, I'm setting up an air mattress in the new apartment. I haven't washed the sheets, pillow cases, and comforters in quite awhile, so this was a good excuse.

Laundromat in a strip mall. I probably should have drove the 4Runner to draw less attention. I've been here a couple of times already to wash the same comforters.

The place was quite busy. I didn't know there were so many apartments (I'm assuming none of the customers owned a house) do not have a laundry room. About 90% of the people were Hispanic.

I brought two comforters to wash so I used the largest washer; you can see my $400 Lauren Ashley comforter (wedding gift) in the left washer. The cost was $4 for each wash and the sign said that it held six loads. That works out to be cheaper than my apartment's $1.25 per washer load. The wash took 25 minutes and about 20 minutes to dry (using two dryers). Some white guy came in after me and used the other machine to wash a sleeping bag. Hmm... I need to wash my sleeping bag as well.

The entire operation took about an hour. For most of the time, I was sitting in some chairs next to this young "couple"... I wasn't sure if they were married, dating, or related. Anyway, the girl was dressed normally in a tank-top and shorts but the guy had the wannabe gangsta look: huge white t-shirt, baggy shorts, and a wife-beater cap. He had trouble walking since the top of his shorts only came up to the middle of his thigh (boxers on underneath). The girl spent the entire time folding clothes while he just sat there on his ass complaining that it's taking so long. Most of the t-shirts coming out of the dryer were his and they were size 3XL to 5XL. Fashion (non)sense aside, I overheard one of his phone conversations and he sounded retarded; maybe his fashion IQ is correlated with his actual IQ.

I actually had some deep thoughts while waiting for my comforters to dry. What keeps a family poor generation after generation? I assumed that the guy in question was not a recent immigrant from Latin America since there wasn't really an accent; he just spoke like a sixth grader. Is it the neighborhood? Is it some sort of cultural aversion towards education? Why did he talk like an uneducated fool... to impress his GF or his homies? I can understand if the first generation has language barriers but why are the 2nd and 3rd generation still poor?

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