Did you realize there are folks living in big cities not knowing what a simple ‘clothesline’ is? It’s true!
A clothesline is generally unheard of in New York or Los Angeles. Folks in rural areas and small town America still use them. They find that hanging wet clothes on a line is the best method for drying them. For my grandparents, a clothesline was an essential part of their every day life.
On occasion during winter months, Grandma Hankins placed a chair in front of her fireplace draping wet items over the back. Mama Haynes did the same. My mother used clotheslines in our early years, but after moving to Alaska she stopped.
It’s virtually impossible to dry a whole basket of clothes inside a home without a clothes dryer. I believe my folks bought their first dryer in 1967. As sturdy as they made washers and dryers back, mom and dad’s are probably still in use.
There’s nothing like the sweet smell of dried clothing after they’ve been exposed to fresh air. Today, companies make scented sheets you toss in dryers for added fragrance. To me they leave behind a sweet chemical smell.
One fragrance sheet in particular called ‘summer rain’ is totally overpowering. Real summer rain is never pungent; it’s refreshing. Certain dryer sheets nauseate me, with summer rain being at the top.
As a child, one thing I liked best about a clothesline was playing with the clothes pins. Wooden clothes pins with springs were the most fun. I’d stick one in my mouth and act like a duck. Our dogs used them as chew toys.
Spring loaded clothes pins also worked great in clamping baseball cards to bicycle forks. The baseball card would stick through wheel spokes, and made a clicking noise as the bicycle was pedaled. It was a cool thing for kids to do back then. There’s no telling how many valuable baseball cards were destroyed!
One neat trick regarding a clothesline, was you could take the clothes pin bag and pull it down towards the ground. Normally these bags had a rounded hook so the container easily slid over rope or cable. Pulling down on line and then releasing launched a hundred wooden missiles.
Pins went flying out of their holder sailing many feet in the air. Between dogs chewing them and me shooting them into space, mom was always buying extras.
We don’t own a clothesline these days. My wife cleverly improvises by taking lawn chairs and laying wet clothing on top. Placing the chair in bright Arizona sunshine quickly dries things. She’s hinted for me to install a permanent line. I’m seriously considering it.
There’s one item I need to calculate before construction. What has the best launch capability; rope or steel cable?