I took the drum out of the clothes dryer today and set it on the concrete out back . It is surprisingly light . The internet told me to carry it out by the drive belt . But , I didn’t do that . I’m a skeptic with not enough faith in the internet . The belt is a narrow thing . If I carried the drum out by the belt , and the belt broke , I’d be cooked .

When I put it on the patio concrete it began to roll . Just a little , then just a little more . I grabbed a package of clothespins from the table and shoved it under the drum as a block . A package of clothespins just happened to be there on the table . I bought it  last week after I strung up the clothesline after the dryer stopped cooperating .

clothespins 006dryer repair today 011

clothespins 001I’m still investigating the innards of the tired  old laundry machine . I took it apart again today. By now all of the little bolts have been replaced with Phillips- head screws . The screws are easier for me to work with . There are lots of them . Lots of them . I’ve taken the machine apart a few times now . I’ll be doing it again . Do you hear me , dryer ?  Note to dryer :  I’m retired . I’ve got all the time in the world to work on  dryer repair  .  dryer repair today 006

At some point , sooner or later , the dryer will surrender , give up the struggle , start up and continue working  until a load of clothes is completely dry . And then it will do it again .  And again .  Are you listening , dryer ?

I was thinking about clothes pins today . I don’t usually think about clothes pins . Clothes pins .  I had to check a few stores before I found clothespins last week when I decided it would be a good idea to get some . The dollar store didn’t have any . Fresh and Easy didn’t have any .  Rite Aid  didn’t have any . I walked over to Walgrens . They had clothespins . They had plastic clothespins and wooden ones . I had to consider which to buy . They were the same price but the plastic ones had fewer in the pack . They were pretty , though , in different colors . They might last longer than the wooden ones . But , I was in this for the short term , only until the broken dryer is fixed . The wooden ones seemed more familiar , like the ones when I was a kid . There’s something to be said for tradition . So I bought the wooden ones .clothespins 004

Sometime in the 1770s  the Shakers invented a one piece clothes peg . The wooden clothespin  with the spring , much like the ones I bought last week ,  was invented by a guy named Davy M. Smith of Springfield, Vermont in 1853 .  Between 1852 and 1887  the U.S Patent Office granted patents to 146 different clothespins . The northeast U.S. was a hot spot for clothespin production . Mass production of clothespins began in the late 1840s .  Making a better clothespin was a national challenge , like making a better mousetrap .

No company produces clothespins in the U. S. today . The last Made In USA  clothespin , made by the Penley Corporation in West Paris , Maine , was manufactured in 2002 . The company had been in business since 1923 . No more clothespins have been made in the U.S. since then .

clothespins 008A handgun is produced in the U.S. every three minutes . Four people are killed by a firearm every hour . We make handguns but we don’t make clothespins .

We import all of our clothespins . Some from China . When China finally comes to collect the debt for all of our imports , at least we’ll have our guns to chase the Chinese  off . At that point our clothes dryers better be working because we won’t be able to import Chinese  clothespins to keep  our clothes from blowing off   the clotheslines .   And at that point , I suppose , I’ll probably need a gun to protect my clothespins from marauders .  

I hope I still have time to fix my machine before the day of reckoning .  I’ll work on it again tomorrow . 

dryer repair today 002dryer finish repair 005dryer finish repair 011 dryer repair today 007clothespins 007


Filed under humor

6 responses to “clothespins

  1. Joe, you are way ahead of me !

  2. We have a clothesline in the basement. Use it all the time. I like the feel of line-dry clothes, but the line is good for stuff you don’t need right away. Try out Google patents. Cool stuff:
    Meantime, order a belt.

  3. I better hang on to my clothes pins before the shortage arises or the Chinese invade. Thanks for the heads-up.

  4. Hi, please forgive me for barging in late on this conversation, I am craftsman that started a clothespins manufacturing business. We are 100% made in the USA. You can see our info at I would love your feedback, good/bad/otherwise. Thanks, Kevin

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