Been clotheslined lately? I have. Regularly as a matter of fact. You see, my Cute Little German Mother insists that she have a clothesline. She’s always had one. I can remember, as a child, running through the sheets that she would hang out to dry and thinking it was great entertainment. I even remember hanging from the posts. They were T-shaped and I liked to hang upside-down on them when I was little. I hated it when I got too big to do that anymore. When I was as tall as they were. Mom, aka Cute Little German Mother, hung many things on the line. She said that underwear would wear out if you put them in the dryer. “Dey lose all de elastic,” she warned. Our house came with the clothesline. I guess that it was pretty routine back in the day. Thank God the line was in the back yard. It wasn’t cool when I was a teenager to have my underwear on display. Heck, my whole family’s undergarments were stretched across the right side of the back yard at least once a week. My dad used to complain about it regularly because the one clothesline in the back yard wasn’t enough. She made him put one up in the garage, too. In case it rained. I think that he felt it was an invasion of his space. You see, he had three daughters and the little cutie, my mom. That’s a lot of femininity hanging in a man’s work space. I sure was glad when I had my own place and I was thrilled to put my undies in the dryer. I also liked to squeeze the toothpaste in the middle of the tube. Another big taboo, according to the little cutie. Well, years later, the clothesline is back. Now that my Cute Little German Mother and I share a house again, she insisted, and I put that lightly, on having the line again. We don’t have posts in the back yard and I wasn’t keen on setting any. So, the clothesline is in the garage. Right down the center because it just wasn’t practical to put it anywhere else with the doors and the shelves, etc. She wouldn’t stand for a small one in the laundry room. It had to be outside. To get the “smell.” Now, when I park in the garage and step out of my car, I am greeted with a brassiere in the face. Granny panties blocking me from seeing where I’m going. And some sort of trouser slip that unashamedly gets shut in the car door. The other day I was out in the garage sweeping. Both doors were up and a neighbor smiled and waved as they drove past. I, of course, returned the greeting. Then I turned to see what I hadn’t noticed before. My underwear were on the line. Thanks, Mom. Oh well, I guess it’s the green thing to do. Even if it sometimes leaves me red in the face.

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