Once upon a time, when Mastadons and Neanderthals roamed the earth as we know it, their lives were harsh.

For instance, there were no dryer sheets. Those humans with the sloped foreheads had to wear their skins with many wrinkles and static cling. Their skins never really felt soft or smelled like a fresh spring day. No wonder they were so grumpy.

They probably only had one or maybe two skins to begin with so they had to be careful with it and unless they were willing to walk around with some strategically placed grape leaves — there was probably no “wash day” as we know it for obvious reasons. I wonder if the skins or pelts or whatever retained a bit of the smell of the animals they came from. I can’t imagine it smelling like anything else but prey. Eau de Prey.

Fast forward to the arrival of the immigrants on the Eastern shores of our country. By then arrivals were wearing dresses, coats, suits and hats. But, wrinkled, still no dryer sheets.

The native Americans greeting these people to the new land, were dressed far more stylishly in soft leathers with long fringes and beautiful beadwork. The women wore headbands and the men wore headdresses with beautiful feathers cascading down each side.

The Native Americans stepped lightly in their moccasins while the newbies wore stiff black shoes with square buckles. Very uncool, I’d say. It is said that all fashion comes back if you wait long enough, but those black buckle shoes have still not come back.

Clothing in those days were washed in a stream and the dirt was pounded out with a rock. Then hung haphazardly around the yard on trees and in the winter, simply strung around on lines inside their cabins until the items were taken down, stiff and a bit fresher perhaps, but no dryer sheets? Once the streams froze over, well — it was a long time until spring.

I have had a few run-ins with dryer sheets and I am sure there isn’t anyone who hasn’t had one unknowingly stuck to their back. I once pulled on a pair of black slacks and went to work, not realizing that the dryer sheet had tangled with a pair of pantyhose and both were dragging out my pant leg.

I was new to my job in Chippewa Falls at the time and as I went back and forth between the newsroom and the graphic’s area (unbeknownst to me) the leg of the panty hose followed me back and forth dragging from inside my pants.

Everyone was getting a good laugh and I was completely innocent — thinking this was certainly a lively bunch. Finally, someone took pity on the goofy new reporter and told me about the extra “baggage” I was dragging.

I immediately drug my “tail” into the bathroom to remove it and I think turned ten shades of red.

Dryer sheets? Who thought those up? They do smell nice and make your clothes less wrinkly and they end static cling (sort of) making laundry easier. I am not sure where this column was going in the beginning or even now in the end. Let’s blame it on paint fumes.

(Copyright © 2019 APG Media)

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