Fitted Sheet Anxiety

img_0104There is something cathartic about fresh sheets.

Buying them. Washing them. Making the bed.

And, there is nothing like sliding in bed that first time after you change the sheets; especially if you’ve just shaved your legs (don’t act like you don’t know what I’m talking about, ladies).

With all the joys fresh sheets can bring, inevitably, you will need to launder them again (preferably weekly, or at least biweekly).

My advice? Always purchase two sets of sheets.

You really don’t need more. Want more? Sure. But, need more? No.

This way, you don’t have to immediately wash your sheets in order to go to bed, and you don’t have a dozen sheet sets to wash and, dare I say…FOLD.

Two sets of sheets also ensures you have clean sheets to sleep on, while still giving you a few days to get the laundry done.

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There are many things in life guaranteed to inflict anxiety upon adults; but nothing quite as much, as folding a fitted sheet.

Before you even take it out of the dryer, you’re already dreading it.

After you remove the pile of ridiculously hot laundry from the dryer, and pull out the 3 still-wet socks that got stuck in the damn pockets again, you make your first attempt at folding this god forsaken anxiety cloak.

It doesn’t go well.

Your blood pressure has already increased. You’re sweating. (Probably swearing). RBF is in full effect.

After a few more tries (the number, dependent upon your patience level; individual results may vary) you decide to, theoretically, ‘throw in the towel’. In this case meaning, roll that shit into a ball, and call it a fuckin DAY!

I mean, really, who even knows how to fold one of these things?

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Well, funny you should ask, Alan!

I do!

Now, you might be asking yourself, “Where did you acquire this skill? Are you a witch? Who taught you how to do this? Your Mother? Your Grandmother? A Nanny? A Maid? Bertha Berman, herself? (The creator of fitted bed sheets.)

None of the above.

I learned how to fold a fitted sheet from a semi-retired Navy veteran, named Walter, while folding laundry in the basement of a hotel I worked at in Newport, RI. I made 11.75 an hour, and back then (2003) that was well above the minimum wage. It was hot and mind-numbingly dull work, so I eventually moved on to other jobs, but I went back to work there for the summer of 2010.

Walter was no longer working there. In his place were two mexican-american women, Nancy and another woman, whose name escapes me. My new laundry amigos did not speak a lick of English. Having no one to bitch about work with, made work days feel reeeaaallly long. (iPod, you the real MVP!)

While the job was unbearable at best, I at least learned how to fold a fitted sheet; along with towels, hand towels, bath mats, fancy napkins, and table cloths.

Not only do I know how to properly fold a fitted sheet, but now I’m gonna show you, so you do too!

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Step 1: Take a deep cleansing breath, and give yourself some encouragement. I have faith you can do this!

Step 2: Turn the sheet inside-out, and locate the Top/Bottom of the sheet (mine are from Target and have these idiot proof little tags).

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Step 3: With the “top/bottom” side parallel to the horizon (at your chin), put your hands in the corners (like mittens) and hold your arms out like a statue of Jesus. Bend your elbows to meet your fingertips and the two points together in front of you, and fold the right corner, right-side-out, over the left pocket. Repeat for other two corners.

Step 4: Holding your edges together firmly, shake out any bunches or wrinkles the best you can. Lay it down on a flat surface and smooth it out.

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Step 5: Fold the sheet in thirds, the long way.

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Step 6: Fold up the sheet (neatly, don’t quit now) until it is the size you need to fit on a shelf in your closet, and you’re done!

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How’d ya do?

Are you still breathing?

Is the sheet folded or in a ball again?

If you didn’t get it perfect this time, don’t fret. I folded nothing, but sheets and towels for 8-10 hours a day, five days a week; I’ve mastered the craft. It was not perfected overnight.

Something tells me, we all have years of folding fitted sheets in our future. We will get plenty of opportunities to practice.

I store my sheets back in the fabric sac they came in, because I’m OCD and that’s how I roll. Another way to store sheet sets easily, is to put the folded sheets inside one of the set’s pillow cases. These are just ways that will make them look nice on the shelf; not required for those who don’t give AF about the interior appearance of their linen closets.

Hopefully this helped clear up any lingering questions or frustrations about fitted sheets.

If all else fails, burn the fitted sheet in the fire pit, and buy new sheets every two weeks.

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