Wednesday, April 16, 2008

#386 Burn These Pants

#386 Burn These Pants

They came up with this great idea a few years ago. Pants that don't wrinkle and rarely stain. Wear 'em. Put 'em in the washing machine, put 'em in the dryer and presto! you have new-looking pants, pants that look like a tailor just pressed them. Marvelous. Perfect creases. Factory new.

Sounds like a dream for guys who want to dress well and can't iron.

Not exactly.

That "throw it into the washing machine part?" Baloney. You have to make sure the wash is warm and the rinse is either warm or cool, but not cold. You can't add softener. You have to put them in the dryer right away and you have to take them out the millisecond they're dry or they look like you slept in them for a week.

Nothing else gets washed like that. So you have to make a special wash day for your EZ care slacks.

Doesn't sound like much of a big deal, but it is. Especially when you have one of those new computerized washing machines. Used to be, you threw the stuff in, you threw in the detergent, you turned the thing on and walked away.

Now, you need to be a computer programmer to change your "default" washer settings.

Oh, and the dryer? Make sure it's on medium. If you have a new, computerized dryer, you have to program it. Not extra-dry or mostly dry or normal dry or sort of dry or damp dry, but medium. If your computerized dryer doesn't have a "medium," you have to call customer service for the appropriate setting equivalent. And then, you have to program it. (For the record, Sears has started putting "medium" on its computerized dryers, but hasn't yet been able to figure out what trouble code F45 means or how to fix it.)

After awhile, this chemical magic seems to wear off. Not all at once. But after 40 or 50 precisely calculated, warm, medium, softener and bleach-free washes, they start to look less perfect. Eventually, they start to look like rags, but without the fraying.

Try to iron these. They won't take it.

So what do you do? They're no longer good enough to donate to the Salvation Army or Good Will. Throwing them away requires a hazmat permit (they may no longer be wrinkle free and stain resistant, but they still have enough of whatever the manufacturer uses to make them to poison an entire landfill for 100,000 years.

So, there's only one reasonable solution: burn them.

To do this, of course, you have to follow the "care label." And it's almost as specific about burning as it is about washing and drying.

1. Set the furnace or barbecue to 375 degrees F.

2. Once the temperature has been reached, throw the pants in the fire for no longer than 30 seconds. If using a barbecue, have a fire extinguisher handy.

3. Remove the ashes promptly.

4. Do not use a kitchen stove without proper ventilation.

5. Manufacturer takes no responsibility for damage to your home or porch.

I'm Wes Richards. My opinions are my own, but you're welcome to them.®
©WJR 2008

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

These pants are indeed expensive too. Regular dockers, about $30-40 at Macy's. These new-fangled super-pants made out of the dockers? Figure $10 to 20 more. To be on the safe side, get EPA approval before burning.