Laundering in Times of Economic Crisis

5 Aug

This morning I was stocking up on some cleaning staples at the store, and I saw a famous-name bleach on sale. When I picked up the bottle, I was intrigued by the image on the label.

Take a look and see if you are also just a *wee bit* puzzled:


If you’re anything like me, you’re wondering why the name Luna on the school “grembiule” (a sort of cotton overshirt that young kids wear to school to protect their clothes from getting dirty) is crossed out and has Susanna written above it.

I love sh$% like this. Part of it stems from being an advertising and marketing major in college, and part of it stems from being a naturally observant and very curious person. I looked at the “new fiber-saving” ingredient announcement on the label. My mind begins to crank away. “Hmmm,” think I. “Fiber-saving: Luna, no. Susanna, yes. Hmmm….” Alas, the effort expended was too much for my heat-saturated brain to tolerate for more than a split second. But hey, the bleach was cheap, so it went in the basket.

Get home and twist the bottle around, and I end up meeting three lovely Italian housewives who are happily expounding on the virtues of Ace’s (AH-chay … get it right!) amazing fiber-saving powers.


Barbara says, “A polo shirt that lasts even longer*, I’ll wear more often. And it’s also a great savings.”

Mihaela (Oh dear God! Wait! This is amazing! We have a Romanian on the package! That could easily lead me to a very extensive and culturally revealing post. But for now I’ll spare you.) says, “Grandmother’s tablecloth stays whiter even longer*: that’s a result that never lets me down.”

And finally, we have Stefania, who tells us: “Next year I’m handing down Luna’s grembiulino to Susanna.”

Ah! And there you have it, folks! Cheap bleach, and clothes that last so long, you can use them not only to efficiently combat the current economic crisis, but also to humiliate the younger children in your family by forcing them to wear an article of clothing that visibly has their older sibling’s name crossed out on the front. And of course, said article of clothing (being designed SOLELY and EXCLUSIVELY to purposely catch stains), with Ace’s incredible fiber-saving power, remains not only pristine but also free of those pesky holes previously caused by repeated bleaching to remove said stains.

Truly, the mind boggles at the possibilities inherent in this exciting development in the world of sodium hypochlorite.

But before we all start celebrating, it behooves me to point out that the psychological implications of this are far-reaching and should not be overlooked under any circumstances. In fact, this whole thing can only lead me to postulate that Stefania might need to use the money she saved by forgoing Susanna’s brand-new grembiule (approximately €15-€20) on Susanna’s future therapy bill. She might even have to hock that diamond necklace she’s wearing. Unless it’s CZ. In which case, I commend you Stefania on your practical and spendthrift ways in this time of financial meltdown.

That is all.

*Rispetto all’ACE Classica precedentemente sul mercato (compared to Ace Classic already on the market)


4 Responses to “Laundering in Times of Economic Crisis”

  1. Nora August 5, 2013 at 9:22 am #

    Poor Susanna. My heart goes to her. And to her sister with the odd, “fancy” name!

  2. Andy Troiani August 5, 2013 at 9:39 am #

    Stefania: “I’m the best housewife because I found something what clean whites efficiently! I’m the worst housewife because I can sew a name on school dress but I can’t unpick one!”
    ps: mihaela is a mistake. A “refuso”. Or “michaela” in Tuscany!
    pps: “whites live longer”… I feel something racist here…

  3. Un'americana a Roma August 6, 2013 at 6:09 am #

    Ha ha! I know, I didn’t comment on that but I was tempted too. Isn’t “Luna” more of a name for a dog, than a person???

  4. Un'americana a Roma August 6, 2013 at 6:11 am #

    I don’t know, if Mihaela is a true mistake, then I think it was some sort of Freudian slip, because that’s a Romanian name, and so many Italian women employ Romanian women under the table to clean their houses. But yes, I agree that it’s very unusual.

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