Okay, it’s Storytime with Uncle Abe….today’s story: Borax
One time me and Cil went up to Sacramento and stayed with her cousin Kristina and her husband Lupe, and for some reason (I was on some weirdo ish around this time) I think I wore a long-sleeve white oxford button-down shirt (sleeves rolled of course) on the drive up.
Or maybe we drove up right after work which is why I was in a white dress shirt. I don’t remember. It’s been some years, but this is all chips and salsa leading up to the carne asada plate main event here.
So I’ve always prided myself on being Abran the Domestic Don. Laundry, dusting, vacuuming…I love that shit. ALL OF IT. But up until this point I had been on a life quest to find what was truly the best method of keeping my whites whiter. Especially since I used to dress like the heir to a Cuban restaurant dynasty with the way I was wearing white oxfords while NOT on the job all the time.
Anyways, Cil’s cousin Kris says “Abe, you can do a load of laundry! It’s cool!” Damn, now I don’t even know why the hell I needed to do laundry. How many days were we up there? I’m really worrying myself now as I type this and all the details surrounding the main point are hella fuzzy.
Whatever. We’re in story mode. Let’s keep pushing.
Okay, so Kris says “Abe, you can do your laundry”, I throw a load of laundry into the wash (including my one white oxford shirt), and she pulls out Tide powdered detergent with Actilift.
The Actilift piece is key. This stuff is MAGIC.
Now up until this particular weekend we had been a liquid detergent family. I’d turn the water on in the washer, throw all the clothes in, then pour the liquid detergent on top.
NEWS FLASH: THAT SHIT DOESN’T WORK THE WAY YOU THINK IT DOES
I mean, even if it blends with the water and gets diluted and what not, NOTHING works as well as starting the water, pouring in your powdered detergent, mixing it up with your hand to make sure there’s no particles clumped together (which WILL end up on your clothes after the rinse cycle if you don’t get this first step right), and then letting your clothes get purified in the waters of Lake Minnetonka.
So we’ve settled that part: POWDERED DETERGENT >>> LIQUID DETERGENT
But then this Actilift stuff that removes even baked-in stains of all kind?
MAAAAAN, I WAS JUMPING UP AND DOWN LIKE I JUST GOT DRAFTED INTO THE NBA WHEN MY WHITE SHIRT CAME OUT OF THE WASHING MACHINE MORE BRILLIANTLY WHITE THAN EVEN THE DAY I FIRST BOUGHT IT!!
I was officially sold. Tide with Actilift would forever be the only way to fly for me.
BUT WAIT…THERE’S MORE…
So now that I had embarked on this new era of clothes coming out of the wash looking revived (and more evenly washed thanks to the powder party going on in that wash basin), I wanted more. And the next puzzle that I had to solve was:
Back to the internet I went. And what did I find thanks to the good folks at Reddit?
You know how in Harry Potter when Harry is fighting a gremlin or whatever and then he’s like “AGHHH! NO! I WON’T LET YOU WIN, VOLDEMORT!” and then you’re like “OH SNAP THEY’VE GOT MY DUDE IN A CORNER!” and then Hermione or Ron roll up outta nowhere, pull out their wand, hit a flick of the wrist, yell “GETTHEFOOKAH OFFMAIFRENDICUSS!” to save Harry and you’re yelling at your TV “YES!!! YESSSSSS!! TAKE THAT, GREMLIN DUDE! WE CAME TO PLAY!!”
That’s how it felt when I added Borax to the mix.
Like “TAKE THAT, YOU LAME ASS STAINS AND HARD WATER MINERALS TRYING TO MAKE FRIENDS WITH MY CLOTHING!”
Like the Tide with Actilift was already changing the quality of my wash, but when I added the Borax (I fill the Tide scooper to the “2” line every time with Borax, then throw it in before I start stirring prior to throwing the clothes in) my undershirts and normal shirts stopped building that yellowing in the underarms. According to the folk at The Spruce, throwing Borax in the mix with the water and detergent lets the Borax convert some of the water molecules to hydrogen peroxide, which then acts as a whitening agent.
Then if that weren’t enough, there’s like 7 total things that Borax also does for your wash (from the same article on The Spruce):
- Whitens whites
- Acts as a pH buffer
- Softens hard water (THIS ONE I SAW FIRSTHAND…NORMALLY WHEN I TURN ON THE WATER IT WAS LIKE “WUSSUP HOMIE YOU TRYING TO NOT BE DIRTY NO MORE OR WHAT?” AND THEN AFTER POURING IN THE BORAX THE WATER WOULD ADDRESS ME LIKE “HEY, LOOKS LIKE YOU’RE WASHING, PAL! ALRIGHT, LET’S DO THIS, PAL!” INSTANTLY WAY LESS HARD….
- Removes soap residue from your clothing
- Neutralizes laundry odors
- Disinfects clothing
- Increases the stain-removal ability of your detergent
So that’s my love affair with Borax. The magical elixir that–when combined with Tide with Actilift–makes me oh so damn happy to do laundry.
Shit, I love washing with this stuff when my sister’s washing machine recently broke I was on the phone with her like “DUDE, IT’S ALL GOOD! COME HERE WITH YOUR LAUNDRY IN BAGS AND WE’VE GOT THE TIDE WITH ACTILIFT AND BORAX ON DECK!!”
Who gets hyped about washing laundry?
In fact, the whole reason I got so fired up to come over to my desk and write this gem of a tale off the top of the dome was because I was doing laundry (BIG laundry today….bed sheets and all towels, then all my clothes), put the fresh bedding on the bed, and was like “man, I feel so good right now.”
I guess that’s what Covid times are all about, man. Actually, that’s what life is all about. Finding the little things that bring you joy–like laundry–and embracing that happiness that you get from doing that shit to the utmost.
Who cares what anyone says about you. Who cares if people think you’re a weirdo. The people who mind don’t matter, and the people who matter don’t mind.
Plus, anyone that tries to give you a hard time for loving what you love is probably sleeping on crunchy bedsheets and typing their lame comments with mad yellow stains under the arms of their Pro Club t-shirt.
Okay, more stories tomorrow (or whenever I feel like it)…but this first one was fun.
Thanks for taking the time to join me for the ride….much love. :]