February 23rd, 2004

serious Oracle

why I will never be an arch-rival to a master detective

A few days ago, I was doing laundry. We have a washer and a dryer in our basement, a basement, I might add, that had taken some serious water during a rainstorm/snowmelt a few days prior. After the first load, I noticed a strange odour. It was decidedly odd: sweet, yet medicinal. "Hmmm," thought I. "How decidedly odd. Ah, well." And so it was I proceeded to do another load of laundry.

The smell remained. I was puzzled. I checked the utility sink where I'd dumped the mopped-up water from the rainstorm and the bucket that had held said water. Nothing. On my urging, my husband took a look. "It's probably the deoderizer from the cat litter, activated by the rainwater."

"No," I replied, "'cause I smelled the damp clothes fresh from the wash cycle, and they, too, had that decidedly odd smell."

"It smells like chlorine," he offered.

"That's because I added bleach to the last load. I thought it might help."


Alas, I could not find the source of the decidedly odd odour. I reckoned that maybe a mouse had somehow crawled into the water lines to the washing machine and died a watery death. Well, the mystery has finally been solved. This very evening I began to fill the washer; I dipped my fingers in the water, sniffed them tentatively. No odd smell. I dumped the clothes in, opened the detergent and... AHA!!!!!

Yup. It was the detergent. I was unfamiliar with the scent; I only picked it up because it was a good brand name and on sale. Did I EVER think to check the detergent? No. I did not.

*sigh* I shall never be a criminal mastermind.
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