It was a bright morning when I put the first load of clothes into the washing machine.
And then I decided to strip the bed.
In this house in order to have clean sheets by night fall one must be on one's toes.
The reason for this is our laundry room is located on the lower level, which is where Grandma Meow Moses resides in her fancy new apartment.
It is all about the timing around here.
Because Tuna, our punk of a cat, does not care for Grandma.
To be fair, Grandma does not care for Tuna.
And then we have Hunter Bunter, our dog from hell.
Hunter does not care for either cat, but he is too old to do much about it.
Typically, Hunter, Tuna and I begin our day with a coffee walk.
Next comes breakfast.
Hunter is ready for a nap after all of this.
But, once Tuna's belly is full, he strolls over to the kitchen door and requests permission to go back outside.
This is when I slip down the stairs, give Grandma a fancy feast pate dinner and sometimes throw in a load of laundry.
Grandma then follows me up the stairs for her treat of milk, before sitting upon her favorite step on the staircase to the loft. That is where she generally stays until Tuna is spotted hanging from the kitchen screen door, which makes Hunter lift his head and bark up a storm and Grandma hiss and spit, all the while Tuna stares down us guilty party goers, with his big, round, suspicious, eyes.
And that is how my laundry schedule gets fucked up.
I will whisk Grandma back to her apartment in the basement.
I will then open the kitchen door and Tuna will fly past me and run down the steps to patrol the closed door at the bottom.
Once boredom sets in, Tuna will find a spot to curl up in for a few hours.
This is fine by me.
It gives me a chance to put a few pieces together on the jigsaw puzzle without a cat sprawled across the top of it.
Feeling refreshed Tuna will stretch and yawn, have a few nibbles of his food and head toward the kitchen door.
I will again let him outside.
This is my chance to go downstairs and switch the load of laundry.
I will come back up with Grandma, who will sit on her favorite step again until there is a cat hanging from the screen again. At which time Hunter will do his shit, Grandma will do her crap and I will take the visitor back down to her apartment.
I will then let the homewrecker back inside.
The only real problem with this system is that it is hard to remember where you are with your laundry.
Cats love to mess with you.
That is what Tuna decided to do the day I stripped the bed.
After the walk and breakfast Tuna decided to nap on our bed.
He slept there all day long.
We had supper.
The sun set.
The movie ended.
Tuna was still lights out.
This was bad news for Grandma.
She had not been able to come upstairs for a second visit.
It was bad news for us.
Our sheets were stuck in the dryer.
It is true.
I could have tip toed down those stairs and pulled those sheets out of that dryer.
But, not without running into Grandma Moses, the world's best guilt tripper.
It was damn near eight-thirty.
My sweet Sven, was thinking about brushing his teeth.
"The sheets are still in the dryer," I said.
Tuna sat straight up when Sven closed the bedroom door on him.
We then crept down the basement stairs, so as not to wake up Grandma, which is dumb because she cannot hear.
Grandma was waiting for us on the other side with her folded arms and condescending look.
Sven's job at this point was to keep the little lady entertained while I piled the load of whites into the laundry basket.
I then handed the basket to Sven.
Sven then handed Grandma to me.
I held her close and cooed into her deaf ears as he started up the stairs with the goods.
I then tucked Grandma into her heated bed in her fancy apartment and turned to make a run for it.
Between you and me, it doesn't matter how old a cat is, she will still be able to outrun my sweet Sven.
And then I just about ran over the man with the laundry basket on the third step from the bottom.
Tuna sprang out of our bedroom as soon as the knob turned and made his way straight down those stairs to investigate the fishy situation.
I put the bed together.
Sven brushed his teeth.
And that is about it.
We all slept happily ever after.
"What's that Louisa?"
Hang on a minute. My sister is talking.
She wants me to tell the other version.
The way the story could have gone.
You see, the entire fiasco could have been avoided.
A week prior to operation clean sheets, I picked up a new brand of dishwasher soap.
It smelled real good.
It was the same scent as my dish soap and my car air freshener.
A few days into it, I was beginning to taste that smell.
It started in my coffee.
And then my plates began to develop a film.
I was bummed that I had bought such a large bag of the new brand.
It came in a child proof zip lock, like kind your marijuana comes in at the dispensary. You know, you have to push down and squeeze at the same time on the little arrow to get it started.
The kind of lock that this old lady has to put on her glasses in order to operate. The kind of lock that I believe came into fashion when children started eating all the Tide Pods.
This, as well as the laundry soap commercial on the tv, got me to thinking.
I pulled out my dishwasher soap to read the fine print.
Nowhere did it mention what type of soap it was.
There were however, warnings on the back in a couple languages about what to do in case of ingestion.
You are supposed to call the poison center.
There, in the upper left hand corner, was a picture of a white t-shirt.
I went to the Piggly Wiggly the following afternoon to do a little bit of research.
That is when I found my new dishwasher soap sitting on the laundry detergent shelf with all the other laundry detergents.
Sons du les bitches.
It took me a while to break the news to Sven.
I mean about me slowly poisoning the both of us.
Had I known all of this the morning of Operation Clean Sheets, I could have just thrown that load of whites into the dishwasher and saved all of us a pack of trouble.