News From Terre Haute, Indiana

Opinion Columns

September 17, 2013

LIZ CIANCONE: Weather throws a wrinkle in the ironing

TERRE HAUTE — I’m convinced that Mother Nature is throwing me a curve ball — high and inside, at that.

Last week, with temperatures predicted to nudge an all-time high, I was standing in front of the ironing board with the steam iron going full tilt. I’m doing myself a kindness by failing to mention the report on the “comfort index.”

I rather like to iron. In fact, I like to see the wrinkles disappear and I enjoy sniffing the clean clothes as they are heated and smoothed. What I do not enjoy is seeing the ironing basket reaching record highs. A little bit of ironing more often works best for me.

But, I digress.

Mother Nature has decreed that there is less ironing to be done in the middle of winter when a blast of steam would be greeted with pleasure, and more ironing in the middle of summer when a face full of steam is unwelcome at best.

In the winter, I send my wool slacks to be dry-cleaned and there are no cotton or linen slacks adding bulk to the ironing basket. Sweaters and sweatshirts require no ironing — not even a touch-up. The T-shirts my Best Friend and I wear to exercise do get a lick with the iron because I usually forget to empty the dryer soon enough that they would do with only a bit of manual smoothing.

It’s pretty much the same thing with the so-called wash-and-wear shirts. I always press them because I think they look better.

But, come summer, I dig out light-weight clothes which seem to attract wrinkles like aging skin. It’s not enough that almost all summer clothing seems to demand the attention of an iron (with me providing the attention), but we wear so many more clothes during the summer.

Because T-shirts are worn on the outside and not under a shirt or blouse, I think they need extra attention.

We wear more cotton slacks and blouses and shirts, too, if only to assure ourselves that we do not offend in crowds. The ironing basket fills up in a hurry.

So, Mother Nature, what’s up? Can’t you mess around with the seasons so we aren’t at the peak of the discomfort level in the summer? Would it hurt to create more ironing when the temperature drops and we would welcome a blast of steam?

Liz Ciancone is a retired Tribune-Star reporter. Send email to opinion@tribstar.com.

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