I got up this morning, begrudgingly, to a very cold house, and started getting ready for work.
After I got out of my usual morning shower, I went to the laundry room to retrieve my new favorite pair of pants from the dryer. Perhaps you remember from an earlier post that our laundry room is special and often prone to locking people inside of it with no chance or prayer for escape. I remembered that. For that particular reason, I was quite careful as I faulted myself up on the barstool to rifle through the dryer.
(The laundry room isn’t wide enough for a washer and dryer to sit side-by-side. As a workaround, I had my very handy father and I build a shelf upon which we placed our dryer, so that Zack and I could use our own washer and dryer, with their full-size load capacity, rather than the existing stacked washer and dryer, whose load capacity is an fraction of what our washing and drying machines are capable of.* As a result of this “stacked” arrangement, you must vault yourself onto the top of a bar stool in order to look directly into the dryer/remove clothes from the dryer/turn on the dryer. It’s a small price to pay for being able to wash clothes in full-sized loads.) (*This sentence is not just a run-on, but a run-on that ends in a preposition. DOUBLE TROUBLE!)
Okay. So there I am, teetering on top of a bar-stool, cloaked in a mere towel, dripping wet hair, trying to dig some black slacks out of the dryer. I find the pants. I grab the pants. And I am climbing down the barstool when I hear a “click” behind me. My ass has closed the door to the laundry room. I am locked in. It is 7:00 in the morning. I am dressed in a towel. It is 30 degrees outside, Zack is asleep, and I am stuck.
Previously, when I’ve locked myself in the laundry room, I’ve had options. Once, I walked around to the front of the house and let myself in. Once I walked outside to our bedroom window and woke Zack up by gently rapping on the window until he realized that his wife, who is incapable of managing doors, is an idiot and needs his help. Those times, I was fully clothed. This time, however, I was not. Those times, the temperature outside was likened to a fine fall morning. This time, however, it was more like an Antarctic wasteland outside. I was left with no choice but to start banging on the door until I woke up Zack. Zack, who was sleeping peacefully in the warm spot I left 15 minutes ago, in the room with the white-noise fan on HIGH. Awesome.
After a solid 10 minutes of banging and yelling, growing ever louder, I started to get a little panicky and a little mad. My train of thought went something like this: Why wouldn’t he wake up? Why couldn’t I get out of here? What would MacGyver do? Where is a knife/credit card/slim metal object when I needed one? Was it possible to use this dog leash in a helpful way? I wonder if I could live on dog beef jerky, of if it’s bad for humans? What is in dog beef jerky anyway? Surely it can’t be that different… Apparently I have a proclivity towards rambling when I’m frustrated.
Finally, I heard Zack’s voice, loud and strong from the bedroom. He helpfully yelled, “SSTTOOPP IIITT.”
And then the rage set in. STOP IT? STOP IT?! @#$%^!?
“STOP IT” is what Zack often yells at any neighborhood dogs barking while he’s trying to nap. ”STOP IT” is what you yell at SisterKaty when she’s interrupting your sleep with 2:00 am pellet gun wars in the back yard. ”STOP IT” is NOT what you yell at your WIFE who is LOCKED IN THE LAUNDRY ROOM AT 7:10 IN THE MORNING, NO MATTER HOW WARM THE BED IS AND HOW COLD THE FLOORS ARE. I, in a word, was pissed.
“I AM LOCKED IN THE LAUNDRY ROOM,” I calmly answered, “PLEASE COME OPEN THE FRIGGING DOOR.”
When I first started banging on the door, I had felt bad about having to wake him up just because my ass didn’t get the memo about the broken doorknob. But after the “STOP IT” comment, I did not feel the least bit meager about it. Instead, I felt rage. Since rage is not best dealt with while one-half of a marriage duo is in a sleepy stupor, and the other half is 10 minutes behind schedule, I simply muttered “THANK YOU” through gritted teeth, and Zack went back to bed.
As I started to iron the pants, I found that both buttons had fallen off in the dryer, and I couldn’t wear them anyway. Those 10 minutes were totally worth getting those pants.
So, I called Zack at work this afternoon, and said I really was sorry that I had to wake him up this morning. He replied with his half of the story. “Yeah,” he said, “I heard you banging, and so I looked out the window (*where I was last time) and you weren’t there. Then I heard you banging some more, figured out where you were, and that’s when I yelled, ‘HANG ON.’”
“… Hang on? That’s what you yelled?” I asked.
He said, “Yeah. I couldn’t figure out where you were.”
“I thought you said, ‘STOP IT.’ As if I was banging on the walls of the laundry room for 10 minutes at 7:00 a.m. just to bother you.”
“Oh,” he replied, “I was wondering why you were so mad at me. I was like, ‘I didn’t lock you in this laundry room! Don’t be mad at me!’”
When I got home tonight, I found that Zack has rigged the door so that it won’t click shut. ”STOP IT”s and “HANG ON”s aside, he’s guaranteed that this morning was the last morning that I’ll wake him up because I’ve locked myself in the laundry room.