Miracle’s off the hook

As Miracle said, I don’t like dry cleaning. Normally, dry cleaning falls in the category of fighting words but today, circumstances get Miracle off the hook. I pulled a muscle in my back, it gave me a headache and I’ve been in an off-mood all day (I got no sleep last night). I was supposed to leave at 6 AM this morning to pick up a machine at Sally’s (halfway across the state) so she’s a little put out that I was a no-show, and then, the cooler at my office went out so it was too hot to work there. Also, my husband went out of town and I never like that so being the mature adult that I am, I prepared by becoming pre-depressed this weekend. I tried to turn things around this morning by getting into a better mood and found this book (a cognitive therapy approach) but then I felt worse because it described -rightly, in my case- that depression is an attempt to gain pity so I ended up feeling guilty for being depressed and deprived. It’s been one of my Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Days and maybe I’ll move to Australia. Actually, having written all that, I feel a little better. Or maybe it’s the Samuel Adams (just one). That was probably TMI* but I felt I needed to qualify why Miracle isn’t getting it with both barrels just in case anybody suspects I’m getting soft in my old age. And Miracle, I’m kidding. I know you think chemicals are icky. If my co-bloggers were sycophants, this blog would be no fun at all.

Way back when, one of our regular visitors was going to write a post about alternative dry cleaning but I don’t know what happened with the project. That’s not a criticism; it’s not as though I follow through on all of my projects. If somebody is interested in following up on it and writing a post, that’d be just dandy. In the meantime, I found out that the leading form of alternative dry cleaning -called Green Earth– was none too safe itself, judging from this news story from NPR. Rather, it seems that the next generation in green dry cleaning uses CO2; a carbon dioxide based cleaning fluid. At the forefront of promoting this new clean process is the Pollution Prevention Center at Occidental College. Their site has information for consumers, dry cleaners and legislators. Let me know if one of you wants to follow up on this and write a guest entry.

* TMI: too much information

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  1. Judith says:

    Awwww Kathleen I’m sorry your having a bad day. I go through long bouts of depression at tiime. About the book you are reading. I guess I should just run away!!! I did not feel well last night either and was up way to late. I’m not going to say what was wrong with me. This would be TMI. I did take a muscle relaxer. I blew all of Monday. I spent the whole day in my night gown. I should have went to a meeting this morning at 9am. My bad. On the dry cleaning front. I dont know how you can dry clean friendly. I have dry cleaned my good clothes alot over the years. I don’t anymore. I moved to the crap south 11 years ago. I have never had so much of my clothing wrecked!!! I had the same dry cleaning woman for 30 years. I had to find someone new in N.C. I found I could not. I would bring my clothing home with me at christmas time. I would then mail it back to N.C. after it was cleaned.
    I did this for 4 years. I then moved to Virgina Beach. I could not find a good dry cleaner there either. I only lived there for a year ( Oh so thankful) I moved to Florida to crappyville. I have been through 4 dry cleaners. I have had one blouse wrecked so far. I have received things back from the cleaners with spots on them. When they went to the cleaners the spots were not in those places!! They have stained some of my clothes.
    I have also had to take the same things in twice. They did not get it cleaned the first time. Dry cleaners here send all their work out. My best dry cleaning lady did all her cleaning herself. She owned the shop and her daughter worked for her. This lady worked 6 days a week very hard. When she was in her 60’s she had a stroke at work while pressing clothes. She took a few weeks off and came back to work. She just retired a few years ago she is 75 yrs old. She sold her bussiness. What I’m doing about my dry cleaning situation is not wearing any of my nice clothes. I know it is not a very good solution. I really dont know what else to do. I have on just a few select things washed them out gently by hand. Then laid them flat to dry. If anyone has a better idea please let me konw. I would be so grateful.

  2. Alison Cummins says:

    I took a look at the table of contents of your book and was puzzled by the emphasis on causes of depression. Everyone’s depression has a different mixture of causes and the causes are very many. But so what? The same basic exercises help for everyone. Sleep hygeine: some people become depressed because they don’t sleep well. (Some sleep physiologists even think that depression is just a symptom of a fundamental sleep disorder.) But once you’re depressed, you probably aren’t sleeping well anyway. Either you keep yourself up at night, or you go to sleep but wake up through the night, or you spend all night and day kind of dozing but not actually sleeping. This will definitely make your depression worse, so put yourself on a regular schedule and stick to it as much as possible. Even if being depressed is disrupting your sleep, at least you can prevent it being worse than necessary. Maybe poor eating habits contribute to your depression, but once you’re depressed you probably aren’t eating well any more anyway. So grit your teeth and make yourself regular healthy meals and sit down and eat them. Get exercise. Get sunshine. Get peace and quiet or human contact, whatever is missing for you. Do something pleasurable. (I saw a great list of possible suggestions once: Eat ice cream. Listen to a good sermon. Walk around naked. Scratch an itch.) Your self-talk takes a dive when you’re depressed, which is another vicious cycle, so interrupt it with cognitive techniques.

    All these things help and the cause doesn’t really matter. If you can pick away at depression from all angles, you can usually get yourself back to where you want to be. If you can’t, or if your depression is too regular or too severe and you’re constantly crawling out of it, then it’s time to think about meds.

    But really, being depressed is bad enough without feeling guilty and beating yourself up for feeling depressed. That’s just mean.

    I started Mood Gym once but never finished the program; it looks good though. http://moodgym.anu.edu.au/


  3. Jan says:

    Funny you should mention dry cleaning and depression in the same post. I came away from my research on the dangers of dry cleaning and its alternatives with a sense of despair and hopelessness. The truth is that many garments manufactured today cannot be washed in water. This is due to both the materials and construction techniques used to make the garment. Textile and apparel manufacturers have developed a symbiotic relationship with the dry cleaning industry. In particular, manmade fibers, dyes and finishes all present problems for a successful immersion in a tub of soapy water. Modern construction techniques such as the use of glue and padding are also problematic. These materials and techniques are dependent on the use of chemical solvents for cleaning. Additionally, everyone I engaged in a discussion of this topic had no wish to take responsibility for cleaning their own clothing. Hand washing is too much of a bother and pressing or ironing is unthinkable (If they even know how.). They prefer to simply drop a soiled garment off at a cleaning establishment, hope for the best and not think about the consequences. Washing and ironing clothing is drudgery and no one wants to do it. In my view, owning a garment requires the acceptance of the work necessary to keep it clean and in good repair. My only hope is that with the current controversy over the dangerous chemical solvents currently used to clean clothing, consumers will demand and be willing to pay for establishments that will provide careful hand washing and the apparel and textile manufacturing industries will change their products to allow for repeated immersions in water.

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