Trina Machacek: Hanging around with hangers

Trina Machacek

Trina Machacek

A wardrobe is a very personal, ever-changing and evolving thing. Well unless you are like me. My wardrobe is about as vanilla as you’ll ever find. Jeans, both long and cut off, T-shirts, a few blouses and a ton, yes, a ton of stuff that is hanging around just waiting to be wearable.
Again. You know the cool things that will possibly someday grow enough to fit like they did back in the day. I do not say my clothes shrank. No, I say my clothes just didn’t grow in size along with me as life marched along.
We all have those few items. A few, ya right! The ones that don’t fit any more. They’re “in holding” until magically they, miracle of miracles, fit and don’t show that muffin top — or bottom. I admit I have a few more than a few of the few items we all have a few of.
Today I am short of hangers. Yes hangers. Just regular, black, un-bent or sagging with age and weight, hangers. I looked for a hanger the other day. I was going through some old boxes of clothes and found a really cute shirt halfway to the bottom of the box.
It was hiding under a very ugly green and yellow shirt. I don’t know where the ugly one came from. It was so ugly I can’t imagine buying it let alone keeping and boxing it with old clothes. Yes I keep old clothes in boxes. I also have old jeans and from time to time I can be found “shopping” in my boxes. It’s like I have my very own second hand store. But! Yes a tight squeeze “but.” I know where all my boxed up stuff has all been.
Over the years I think I have thrown away more than 1,000 hangers. Wire, wood, plastic. I don’t like plastic hangers. The ones that ended up in our house were thick and heavy duty. Hanging up heavy winter canvas chore coats. Now that the only chore coats living in my house are nothing but hoodies those awkward plastic hangers have gone the way of the wooden ones that were supposed to only hold nice suits and things with shoulder pads. I’m not seeing anything like those clothing items in my future so out to the trash went the wooden hangers.
All I need any longer are just plain ole regular hangers. For some crazy reason I do not seem to have any extras. You know, hangers that just hang around.
Hangers are such amazing works of art. You can of course use them to hang up clothes. Moms can bend them to create frames to surround wonderful macaroni pictures. Hangers can be un-twisted to make hot dog roasting sticks in the summer. Not sure this is a safe thing but we did it as a kid and I am still here so there is that. Straightened hangers make good things to stick down a clogged drain. Carefully though as they can get stuck down there and then you run the risk of having to explain to a plumber just what you were doing. Oh, don’t ask!
I have used hangers to hold little cedar blocks that I have drilled holes in and then tied together on a string. Then hang my hanger holding blocks in my closet to keep moths away. I have really never seen a moth eaten cashmere sweater, never having owned a cashmere sweater. Not really a sweater kinda gal.
But someone once told me that I needed to put something cedar in my closet to keep moths from eating cashmere. I don’t know if moths eat cotton or whatever t-shirts are made of. Just in case they do though they will be met with cedar blocks in my closet. Yes, my much desired wardrobe is safe from any wayward moth looking for a free lunch.
After all the hangers that have come and gone in my life I can’t believe that I’m now looking for hanger handouts. My mother took clothes to the dry cleaner weekly. We always had a new supply of fresh hangers. Sometimes they were covered with paper. I still don’t know why some hangers from the cleaners are paper covered. Another mystery of life.
The nearest store for me to buy hangers is over 100 miles away. Buy hangers?! No way. I’m going to free up a couple of hangers by sacrificing a few of my “in holding” items and add them to my second hand “store-age.” My closet is a clothing merry-go-round where I’m found sometimes just hanging around with hangers.
Trina Machacek lives in Eureka. Her book, “They Call Me Weener,” is on or e-mail her at itybytrina@yahoo.comto find out how to get a signed copy.


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