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Wednesday, 11 December 2013 11:54

Folding fitted sheets: An exercise in futility

Folding fitted sheets: An exercise in futilityEver since my single mom (long before that term became popular) made a list of things I was to do while she was at work, I've tried to be a partner in doing household chores. After all, I live in the house and I am an equally responsible for taking care of it and doing those routine, mundane things that every householder must do.

I don't mind cleaning toilets, or emptying the cat litter box, or running the sweeper or almost any other chore. Of course the boss of the house usually does a much better job. (Note: I'm really not the stereotyped male slob as depicted on TV football snack commercials and I think my lovely wife will attest to this.)

But when it comes to folding fitted sheets, I'm a klutz. The flat sheet is no problem. Zap! I've got it down. Many people have offered their sage advice on how to fold fitted sheets. I've tried them all and still I end up with a wad that I fold (sort of) and put under the nicely folded top sheet.

Yes, I take the opposite corners and tuck one into the other. Then I fold that in half and tuck those corners into the others. Then I fold all this in half (sort of) and continue folding until I have a nice little package (sort of).

The only problem is after tucking in the first two corners, the rest is like trying to put a bowl of Jell-O back into the dry powder box. The sheet has a mind of its own. It goes everywhere.

Like The Blob, it flops around, springs out from the tucked corners, flaps open from the folds; it's like the proverbial can of worms got loose!

It isn't a problem with the sheets on our RV. Since we only have one set, we wash them and put them back on the bed. Simple.

But if you have more than one set of sheets for your home bed, you have multiplied the problem many fold (no pun intended).

Rather than mess about trying to do a professional job of making sure the corners are nicely tucked to pass any unannounced inspection by home décor maven Martha Stewart, I fold the fitted sheet as squarely as I can making sure to smooth out the wrinkles (one never knows when Martha might knock on the door). Then I continue folding until I have a reasonably neat square (sort of). Voila! Done.

In the USAF, we didn't have fitted sheets. We were glad to have any sheets. The ungodly uncomfortable bunks weren't designed for Martha Stewart sheets.

The only thing we had to worry about was if a quarter or half dollar would bounce high enough off the tightly fitted sheet and blanket and into the hand of the sergeant standing over the bed. The sheets and blanket had to be folded at the corners and tucked in. This is often referred to as a hospital tuck.

I've given up ever perfecting the folding of a fitted sheet. Instead, I fold it as neatly as I can (sort of) and put it under the squarely folded top sheet and pillow cases.

If Martha makes an unexpected visit to see our humble abode she will have apoplexy when she discovers I have failed.

When it's all said and done, who really gives a rat's patootie if our fitted sheet is folded properly or not? No one is going to see it unless they inspect our linen closet (which they aren't).

My only concern is to make sure a quarter or half dollar will bounce high enough for Sgt. Rambo to catch. Now that's something to worry about.


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