Bolavá, Anna: Washing machine – iLiteratura.cz

Our washing machine. Without a doubt my most faithful species. I remember how they brought her to us. She was as big and white as a whale, but digital.

Washing machine

The guys in the dirty overalls didn’t know how to “build” it, that is, they never put the wooden door on the kitchen wall back in place, so our brand new cetacean was staring at us, unmasked, unveiled, thrown into space. Ready to meet all the requirements of my first puerperium. Swivel wheel, display with orange lights and time, countdown to washing program. Intense cotton, soft exterior, quick fortnight. Audible alarm other than the howl of the ground. The perfect device. I love him so much! And I mention it because Something come.

A few years later, a completely different guy in dirty overalls and his inappropriate hints. Then he took the nearby dishwasher from where last water flowed all over the stairs five stories all the way down, and confidently announced this one (chin pointing at the washing machine) was next! Count on it, my age and everything is deception. We waved to him and spent many more great years together: muddy springs with attempts to even wash shoes, above-average hot summers with sand baths or at least cyanobacteria, optimally functioning autumn spots and frosts in the form of heaters, which had a brim drum. She fought it all, girl, with no excuses. Of course he has his head and their twenty minutes before the end of the cycle actually means thirty-five. Or the art of suddenly changing the size of clothes and also the mystery of two holes drilled in any fabric exactly five centimeters apart. How does the beast do (if it does)! It looks like a vampire bite, two perfectly identical holes on a T-shirt, two more on sweatpants, two holes on pajamas, all with well-defined spacing. I have been looking for it for many years and the result is always open… Like your mouth tapping my leg when I go to the bathroom around you at night. Your creaking sound will crackle in the silence and I’ll bruise over time. Another would have lost their mouths wide open a long time ago, you have the hell.

Do you remember the period of the stomach flu? I loaded it into your stomach in the middle of the night without turning you on, because there was no room anywhere else in the apartment. Do you remember the first disinfectants? Or the cleaner to whom the laundry is not put at all? You were driving happily at sixty, full of foam that had just come out in the sewer. Or at a nearby dishwasher. Your frequent prank – go home, in the dishes. Is this happening? You laugh because you know our plumber’s diagnosis, his I can’t help it, you have a little in the back. But I don’t allow you to color the clothes, I strictly keep the reins in it, but otherwise we don’t resist experiments, do we? After years of anti-allergy detergents, I take out scented colored capsules, which you first touch for a few minutes (they are so soft) and then put them in the drum. Then, of course, it doesn’t dissolve, and you find the rest of the blivajz on the sleeve of a black T-shirt, because black usually hides everything or reveals everything. I’m not mad at you, cursing the forgotten capsule and tissues, not at myself. I stroke the numbers I know by heart, then wipe the dust from your glass door and check the rubber.

I am irradiated. Watching electronic devices like me is not recommended. I often sit directly on the floor and watch the first water run over your glass and which of the clothes it grabs first. When it starts to foam. When to warm up. When to squeeze. The first time I washed the curtains, I opened you prematurely. Assuming you were sick (you didn’t move for ten minutes!), I slammed the door. Or the first time you dropped a drink from the line above you. Shit! At that time I was angry, today I approach it (you) differently.

Something come. You crash, you crash, you scare quite normally. You’re trying to jump into space and chase the devil out of our kitchen, but I’ll give it to you! You have it in your body! Parkinson’s, Alzheimer’s, osteoarthritis and bronchitis. Penicillin and collagen, you have it all in this tablet, so dip, stir and swallow. The guy in the dirty overalls will have no mercy, think carefully about the signals you want to send. Hold it for a few weeks, and you’ll have shoes to play with! Wait until summer and the kids will come back from camp. Three sleeping bags and thirty kilos of stale laundry, you can’t wait! I’ll watch you, I’ll hold you, you know I never walk away now when you’re washing. You make me sounds really is scary. I’m nervous for you, and I’m addicted to you. I need you and you scare me so much! Sometimes I hide food inside you, but you probably don’t care, do you? You don’t care what I do without you! At the same time, we belong to each other like Mr. Tau and his bowler hat or like Brad Pitt and his coffee machine! I know we two have a deeper relationship than actors and their stuff. When something breaks, they get new ones and immediately and for free. I have huge eyes left for a pathetic cry that tastes like a wolf howl. How pathetic that I confess my love not to people, but to a mere machine! And it’s certainly not today’s coronavirus era, we won’t talk about that here. It’s just you and me. The two of us and the time we have left. That’s why I mention it, for orientation on the timeline of humanity, for this today end of February 2022, when I put my head in you and call I love you and then you echo and the world is fine. You love me too…

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© Anna Bolava

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