Sunday, June 29, 2008

To Daniella, with love

This post is dedicated to Daniella, my dry cleaner from the neighborhood I lived in before I got married.

When I bring clothes to be mended, I expect to pick them up in a better or at least similar shape, in which they were dropped off. Last week I brought SubHub's pair of suit pants to our local dry cleaner (who as of 6 p.m. Friday dropped "our" from his title and became simply a "local dry cleaner") because the hem on one of the pant legs was partly undone. The pants just came from the dry cleaners, freshly cleaned and pressed.

I came to pick them up on Friday and was handed a bag. Since I was in a rush, I just took the bag, thanked the dry cleaner and went home. When I came home and took out the pants, I was a bit speechless, and that doesn't happen often to me, just ask SubHub. The hemming was done just fine, but pants themselves looked as if they had been chewed by a giant animal and subsequently spit out in the bag.

Thankfully, the local dry cleaner (notice the absense of "our") is less than a block away, so I took the pants back to him. First he thought that I wanted them pressed and was very sad to inform me that it would be impossible to get done the same day. When he realized that I had no intention of paying for pressing the pants (which costs more than hemming, by the way) and wanted it on the house, he all of a sudden developed an acute case of not understanding English and dimwittedness, repeating over and over that I didn't pay for pressing pants. I kept on pressing (no pun intended) my point: yes, I only paid to hemming, I did not pay for wrinkling the pants. When he could no longer keep up with his charade of pretended to be dumb or simply got too exhausted by it (just ask Paris Hilton, being dumb is soooo tiring), the dry cleaner miraculously regained his knowledge of English and stated that his business did not guarantee that clothes coming in for mending would be returned in the original shape. So basically I should be happy he didn't set the pants on fire the minute his wife finished hemming them. I said that I have heard enough, asked him one last time if he would make me whole, and left the premises after receiving negative asnwer. On the other hand, I am kind of happy that the dry cleaner refused to press the pants. I wouldn't want to entrust my or my husband's clothes with someone who treats them so poorly, especially if he is mad at me.

This accident made me miss my old dry cleaner, Daniella, whose business my family and I patronized before I married and my parents moved. She was fast, efficient, extremely organized, very good seamstress AND she always pressed clothes after mending them, FOR FREE AND WITHOUT PRIOR REQUEST. It was a standard operating procedure for her. Ehh, good times...

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