Trina Machacek: Magic carpet ironing

Trina Machacek

Trina Machacek

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Ironing is not a gig that 99.9 percent of people I know want to do. There is only one woman I know who likes to iron. She is very good at it, and she uses her ironing time to relax a bit.
That is just what I tried doing this morning as I was attacking my weekly ironing. It’s not like I have a lot. But. Yes, a wrinkled and needs ironed “but.” HAHA, I do have just a few basic items that if are not ironed, I feel all, well all wrinkly and unkempt. That’s why I iron. To feel kempt. Kempt is a good way to start any day.
Pretty sure it is in my DNA to iron as I have been ironing for more years than the number of gallons of weed spray I have sprayed. Trust me, that’s a lot of gallons. Suffice to say I could put a golden iron up on my shelf. If I had a golden iron holding shelf. I too spend some of my ironing time relaxing as the iron slides across a shirt or pillowcase. Not the sheets. I draw the line at ironing sheets. Come on, I am not that enamored with my iron and board.
Oh, the ironing board. Mine is kept behind a door in a spare room. It stands as a sentry, waiting until it’s called upon to carry out its appointed duties. If I didn’t fold it up and stuff it behind that door it would of course become a table. Holding all matter of things, I should put away, but it is just easier to lay it on any ole flat surface. I think I wrote about that once. Deciding that the reason the world is round is so I will not always have a flat surface to cover with stuff I am too lazy to put away. But I digress.
In years past, I worked at a hardware store and among many things we sold, we sold ironing boards. I remember asking one mid-aged woman why she was buying it. I figured it was going to be a gift for someone about to be married starting a life away from home. I was taken aback when I was told it was for her. She apparently and kind of regularly bought a new ironing board for herself. My ironing board was my husbands, and he picked it up from two gals that were moving out of an apartment building in Southern California, where he lived while going to school. In 1968! I still use it and it still does all the things it did when it was new. Oh, it might need a new round of duct tape on one foot to keep it even, but it glides the iron just as smooth as ever.
Oh the iron. Another wonderment of today. I took a quick glance at irons for sale online. You can still get an iron for about $29. Of course, if you want to wow your neighbors with your prowess of ironing spectacular-ness you can spend more than $200. Steam, no steam, hot steam, cool steam. Wait. What? I just flipped by that one. My iron may not be as old as my board, but it is old enough to vote and can buy a drink at the local watering hole. And that drink is never distilled water. I have never bought into that notion. Tap water was good for me when I was ironing for money making 5 cents a piece. So, I think I have debunked the “distilled water only” theory. For me and my iron at least.
Lastly, there is the ironing board cover. Here I admit, I should get a new one. I noticed as I slid my iron over buttons on the last blouse that there was a distinct lack of cushioning to absorb the buttons. Thus, causing extra bumps and those triple wrinkles around the buttons. You know, the ones that are the hardest things to get out.
I am not looking forward to changing the ironing board cover. It’s become an old family friend. I cannot remember the last time I changed it. It has many, many marks and stains and colors and tatters. Hey, it could be art. Oh now there’s an idea. We should all get together and sew old ironing board covers together, frame them and sell them as the newest art discovery.
Then spend the rest of our days ironing the wrinkles out of the money we will make. Now wouldn’t that make ironing truly magical?
Trina Machacek lives in Eureka. Her books are available online or direct from her at


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