Frugal New Zealand Laundry Ethic


Fast talkers
We recently had some house guests from New Zealand. The male of the species is an incredibly fast talker who was also a treasure trove of trivia. He claimed that New Zealanders are the fastest speakers of English, which makes intuitive sense to me. South Africans are also fast talkers. If you’re not used to the accent, throw in a few idioms and you might find that they’re completely incomprehensible.

Alien behavior
Anyway, our daughter noticed something strange in the bathroom. I went to investigate. There were shirts hanging from the shower door railing — drying! This amused me immensely, not because I thought it was foolish or overly spartan, but I knew my daughter was experiencing something new. Completely alien behavior. She has never seen clothes hung out to dry.

Our climate
Of course this is wrong. We live in Southern California and it is dry as the dickens almost every day. It’s not like we live in Seattle. Funny thing is, it rains in New Zealand quite a lot.

Money laundering
We are swimming in debt and are trying to find ways to save money. Everybody knows that dryers consume ridiculous amounts of electricity. We could at least experiment with drying some clothes. I’m willing to sacrifice a few shirts. (One guy I know swears his shirts feel cleaner now that he air dries them.)

Make it yourself, dry it yourself
Combine this with a recipe to create laundry detergent and I think we could potentially be saving some serious dime. Combine this with the revelation that we generally use too much laundry detergent (liquid hand soap, dishwasher detergent, etc.) and we could potentially be saving some serious dime.


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