A Peg For Every Sock

I’d rather be driving the car than be a passenger, but last weekend I had good reason to ride “shotgun.” I was on sock and underwear patrol.
Last week, Peter bought me a clothesline (lucky me). Actually, I’ve been expecting one for some time now, but for practical reasons only (not as a present, honey).
No, there aren’t any Brownie points for buying me more work. Granted, the hydro bill will take a nose dive when we don’t use the dryer, but if you’re looking for laurels from your love, how about buying me a line of clothing instead?
However, your intention has been noted.
Saturday morning came along and I threw in a load of wash, and dug out the coloured clothes pegs I’d saved from 1985 (yes, I remember where everything is).
Half-an-hour later, I hauled the 75-pound laundry basket outside, stepped on the dog’s tail because I couldn’t see where I was going, and headed to the hanging nook.
I stood ready to make my contribution to eradicating dryer emissions and saving money. Then, the flashback hit me. It was like cleaning the toilet and ironing—jobs really low on the likable list.
So out of sheer spite for the one chore I’d managed to avoid for years, I grabbed two different socks and a tea towel and pinned them together with a red peg, followed closely by a T-shirt pinched at the top of each shoulder with blue and green pegs.
No pairing. No linking. No “if you wear it on top, peg it by the bottom” nonsense. And if it was left inside out at the time of washing, or a sock had formed into a ball, that’s how it went on the line.
That little fit lasted about five minutes, then I took everything down and started over. One peg for every sock. No pairing. No linking. T-shirts by the bottom.
By that time, Peter was up. Coffee in hand and in leisure mode, he strolled out and sat down in a lawnchair to observe my handiwork.
“Aren’t you supposed to hang socks together with their mates?” he asked. “And aren’t you supposed to put all the socks in a row and then all the underwear or something?”
“Quite frankly, my dear. . . .,” I mumbled.
Then #3 daughter showed up to inform me that I couldn’t hang her underwear up to dry outside because somebody might see them.
That got me to thinking. Is there some kind of natural order of things or a secret clothesline club that others belong to but me?
Internet handshake ensues. I Googled “correct way to hang clothes” and clicked on “Hanging Items Upon a Clothesline.”
And I quote: “Peg colour and style should be consistent across an item. If you like to link suitable items, peg colour and style must remain constant along the entire chain.
“If you must change peg style, close off the chain and begin a new one.”
What’s up with that!? Do I really have to pay that much attention to the way things hang on the clothesline?
That’s when I rode “shotgun.” I hung out the window (seat belt on, mind you) and scouted for peg etiquette in a 12-km radius.
Two things are for sure—#1. You can’t see the colour of the darn things from the road. And #2. Don’t get caught too close for too long staring at how someone hung their underwear.
They’ll hang you out to dry.

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