5 Horrific Things You Really Don't Want to Know About Laundromats

laundromatFor the last year I was blessed with the earthly delight of having my own washing machine and dryer after oh so many years using a laundromat. Then the unthinkable happened and I had to downgrade to an apartment without my own washer/dryer. There isn't even one in the building. So it's back to schlepping my stuff to the laundromat, which is luckily just a block away. This story about a poopetrator putting some hot doodies in dryers at the laundromat has me scared sh*&less though.

Oh you haven't heard? Some sicko at Yale is going to the campus laundromat and putting feces in unattended dryers while people's clothes are in them. The perp (or poop) also seems to have urinated on the clothes. Of course this freaks me out about doing laundry and has me thinking about the horrific things we really don't want to know about laundromats ... but should.


1. The poopetrator at Yale has struck four times so far and has sent an email to the local paper claiming responsibility signing his/her name Copro Philiac. Coprophilia is a person who has an obsessive interest in excrement. I wish there was a map telling me how close I live to those registered on the Coprophilia registry list. Currently there is no such list. Horrifying. Laundromats everywhere should demand this list be made!

2. Remember there is plenty of poop being washed out of the underwear of people who don't have good sphincter control and of course cloth diapers, clothes affected by blow-outs, and the threads of kids who haven't yet learned how to poop on the potty. All in the same washing machine you launder your pillowcases.

3. Laundromats are where people go to get rid of bed bugs, or wash all their potentially bed bug infested clothes and bedding in super hot water and then put in the super hot dryer to hopefully kill off any still alive flesh suckers. Hopefully none of those pregnant with a zillion other buggers escaped and are resting on the folding table waiting to find a new home in your cozy sweater.

4. People like to put things in their pocket and forget them there. Like tissues. Tissues with snot rockets fired into them. Tissues from bloody noses. I once heard of someone putting a used condom in their pocket and then accidentally washing it, impregnating a slutty black lace thong.

5. If you can imagine cleaning your things in a place where your gross, cigar-smoking, loogie hacking neighbor just put his stretched-out waistband tighty whities, then I suggest one of those heavily scented, extra chemically kind of laundry detergents that will no doubt cause your skin to rash. But hey, that's better than wearing someone else's poop, right?

There certainly are very clean laundromats -- I'd like to think my suds spot is of the pristine variety. Check the state of the place -- are the floors swept, is the lighting good, how much residue (if any) is there inside the machines, is there an attendant paying attention to the place and keeping it super tidy? Some laundromats are awesome. Some not so much.

Do you have a fear of laundromats? What was the worst thing you've seen at one?


Image via Lauren Mitchell/Flickr

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