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Even living in NYC, the center of the universe, has its drawbacks. Here’s one: Unless you’re extremely lucky (or a millionaire), you probably don’t have a washer and dryer in your apartment.

Instead, your Saturday involves schlepping the entire contents of your closet to the Laundromat (or even just in the basement of your building) and spending the day with some extremely weird characters.

You can’t avoid these eight crazy people, but we’re here to help you deal with them.

worst laundry people 2

THE DETERGENT THIEF

You catch this lady stealing glugs of your fabric softener when your back is turned. When you confront her, she pretends she doesn’t speak English.

What to do: Invest in a handy detergent tote so you can have your supplies with you at all times. (It’s sad that the world has come to this.)

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THE WASHING MACHINE POLICE

This guy makes a beeline to your machine the second the buzzer rings and throws your clothes on top of the washer--or worse, the floor.

What to do: Set a cell-phone timer so you’ll get to your clothes before the WMP does. Besides, the sooner the dryer cycle starts, the sooner you can get the hell out of there.

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THE “ONE SHIRT IN EVERY DRYER” GUY

He’s obviously in a hurry (and a jerk), because he thinks it’s OK to use every dryer in the place to get his clothes dry quickly.

What to do: This is a job for the Laundromat owner. Quietly tip her off while the rude dude is feeding quarters into his 378 dryers.

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THE LAUNDRY GHOST

When the washing-machine cycle ends, the owner of the load is nowhere to be found. You start to wonder if the clothes even have an owner.

What to do: If you’re in a time crunch, give a 15-minute courtesy, then carefully transfer the wet clothes (ew) into a laundry basket. Whatever you do, don’t be the WMP.

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THE WET SOCK FAIRY

Who’s sprinkling wet laundry all over the floor? Why, it’s the Wet Sock Fairy, creating slippery hazards for all!

What to do: Watch your step as you carry that impossibly heavy hamper of dry clothes to the folding table. The WSF can be extremely sneaky.

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THE LOUD MULTITASKER

She’s a lawyer doing her laundry on her lunch break, so you have to overhear her angry, screaming calls to her assistant for 45 minutes. 

What to do: Noise-canceling headphones are your friend. Here’s some stuff to listen to.

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THE FOLDING TABLE HOG

She’s only folding seven towels, but for some reason she needs four freakin’ tables to accomplish this.

What to do: First, get your side-eye under control. Then smile as big as you can and politely ask if she minds consolidating.

worst laundry people family

THE FAMILY OF twelve

We feel for the single mom who has to bring her kids with her to do laundry on a Saturday. But seriously, they need to keep their sticky jam fingers off your clean T-shirts.

What to do: Use those rolling metal carts to barricade yourself in a quiet corner of the Laundromat. Breathe, meditate and repeat after us: “My next apartment will have an in-unit washer and dryer. My next apartment will have an in-unit washer and dryer…”

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