Pretty soon after starting work at Google, I began using the onsite dry cleaning service. Okay, it’s not really onsite, you drop it in a bin and they take it somewhere, but as far as I need to know, everything happens at work. I just put anything that I don’t know how to wash or that would involve ironing in a bag, and dump it in the lobby. A few days later, my clothes return on hangers. It’s pretty convenient.
At one point, I decided that I would start using a local dry cleaner instead of taking my clothes to work. I can’t remember why I did this. I think I figured out that it would be slightly less expensive. For a few months, this worked out perfectly. I would take a pile of clothes to the counter, say, “I’d like these to be cleaned,”* and come back at the end of the week, when my clothes are available on hangers. One day, I went in and was helped by the husband of the husband/wife owners instead of the wife who usually helped me. I handed him my pile of clothes, and he asked if I would like them dry cleaned. I didn’t know what else one would want at a dry cleaner’s, so I said yes. I never know what to say at one-service places like this. Whenever I go to get my hair cut, they ask, “How can I help you?” I say, “I’d like a haircut.” I always feel like an idiot when I say that though, because it’s so obvious. But what else could I say?
When I returned to pick up my clothes, my bill was a few times higher than it usually is, and I learned that this was because dry cleaning is more expensive than laundering. I did some research online that day, and read that for many articles of clothing, laundering is just fine, but dry cleaning is actually better, but not totally necessary, but it can make your clothes last longer, but it’s more expensive… and I didn’t feel like having the responsibility of making that decision. Is it worth it to spend more on dry cleaning, or is it easier to buy new clothes? I don’t want to have that problem.
Now I drop my clothes off at work again. No questions asked.