When I was young, I was fascinated with laundry chutes. I don’t know what it was about them, but whenever I would go to a friend’s house for the first time, I would ask if they had a clothes chute. I was quite the loser.
Most homes that were built in the 50′s and 60′s had a clothes chute. Sometimes they were right on wall on the hallway, and sometimes they were in a closet. I guess it would make sense to put it directly over the laundry room. Wouldn’t be right throwing clothes down a chute and land on a pool table, I guess. Unless there was a clothes basket on the pool table.
My sister tried to put our dog, Susie, down the clothes chute. I caught her before she did it. She put Susie in the corner cabinet turntable and put her in the hamper in the bathroom. Poor Susie. My mom found some doll babies on the floor under the chute, but never the dog, thank goodness. Sometimes we would play “Mail Delivery” and other stupid games we made up, using the Clothes Chute. I do remember dropping cans of green beans down the chute. We got in trouble for that. Well, at least we didn’t peel the labels off of the cans. We got in trouble for that one too. I can’t remember all the things we threw down the chute. I know we hung Barbie dolls by the neck and lowered them down the chute. We used yarn. Death to Barbie. I think we had the trolls set up on the floor, under the chute, waiting for Barbie like she was an offering for the Troll Tribe. Who the hell knows for sure. We were always thinking.
I don’t know why I was the one who had to “throw the clothes down the chute.” My mom would call from downstairs, “Vickie, throw the clothes down the chute…….Vickie…….I know you can hear me…Throw the clothes down the chute……Vickie……I see you looking at me…..get the clothes……”
I remember going to my great aunt’s house in Spokane, Washington, and she had a dumb-waiter. That was like a fancy, moveable clothes chute. An elevator for clothes, so to speak. I didn’t understand what the hell it was. I just knew that it was the neatest freakin thing I had ever seen. I sent stuff up and down that thing for hours. It didn’t take much to amuse me.
Some new house designs have hidden clothes chutes. When we built our house, we used a piece of heating duct in the laundry room. I don’t like not being able to see a laundry chute. I guess I would have to do some real snooping to find clothes chutes in homes today. The Gladys Kravitz of clothes chutes.
I guess it is the little things in life that amuse me. The clothes chute brings back a lot of memories. Poor Susie the dog is long gone, but I did save her from being “chuted.” We never were bored, that’s for sure.