The story of how one mum’s lir­ta­tion with small do­mes­tic ap­pli­ances turned into low-level ad­dic­tion.

The Australian Women's Weekly - - Contents - WITH AMANDA BLAIR

Amanda Blair goes gaga for a gad­get

At a din­ner party, the host made an of­fer. She said it looked like I needed some time alone with “her ma­chine” and of­fered to take me to her bed­room straight away. Ini­tially I was quite taken aback – I mean, was it that ob­vi­ous? Was I that bad? As­sur­ingly she told me her hus­band loved the ma­chine too and of­ten he’d go at it be­fore work. She warned me, “Once you start you can’t stop.” It sounded too good to be true. I put down my bikkie and cheese and fol­lowed her into the bed­room.

She opened her top drawer and pulled it out. With the ick of her nger it was on and hum­ming fu­ri­ously. Walk­ing to­wards me she gig­gled, know­ing I was about to reach the peak of hap­pi­ness. She started rub­bing the ma­chine over me … back­wards and for­wards and in a cir­cu­lar mo­tion. Up and over my shoul­ders, down my back, across my front, down my arms. I squealed with de­light and won­der, as I’d never seen any­thing like it be­fore. I didn’t want it to stop but after ve min­utes or so she said I was done and turned me to­wards the mir­ror so I could have a look. I couldn’t be­lieve it – my jumper looked com­pletely brand new. The bat­tery­op­er­ated pilling ma­chine had worked a treat and my wool­lies went “wow”.

You may think I’m a lit­tle (no, a lot) weird for be­ing so de­lighted by this ma­chine and its mirac­u­lous power of re­newal, but there is noth­ing more dis­ap­point­ing than buy­ing a new, smart-look­ing jumper, wear­ing it a cou­ple of times then hav­ing it bob­ble so badly it ap­pears you’ve re­peat­edly rolled on a gi­ant vel­cro mat for six days. Ac­tu­ally, there are more dis­ap­point­ing things – I’m be­ing histri­onic. Not hav­ing sex with Brad Pitt is more dis­ap­point­ing; not be­ing swim­suit ready ONCE in my en­tire life is nat­u­rally dis­ap­point­ing. Not be­ing recog­nised for my po­ten­tial and hid­den re­serves of so­phis­ti­ca­tion and be­ing cho­sen to marry into Euro­pean roy­alty is ob­vi­ously hugely dis­ap­point­ing, not just for me, but more broadly, for the world. But I di­gress.

The thought of re­stored wool­lens kept me awake al­most the en­tire night – I needed an­other pill(er) to calm me down. Drop­ping the kids early at school the next day, I made it to the shops be­fore they opened and paced out the front like a crazed stock­take shop­per look­ing for a cheap white­good deal. The doors opened and I ran like Cathy Freeman (with­out the style or speed) to the back of the shop and there it was, framed by those other es­sen­tial do­mes­tic items: a hot melt glue gun and a pair of pink­ing shears. On oc­ca­sion of the pur­chase I’d pur­pose­fully worn a pilled jumper and I spent a solid 10 min­utes sit­ting in the carpark of Big W go­ing over my­self. It pro­vided me with a sat­is­fac­tion that is hard to de­scribe, dear read­ers, but un­like most of my col­umns, it was deep.

I’m yet to tire of this pur­chase and it’s been with me a few weeks. I’ve gone over ev­ery item con­tain­ing a nat­u­ral bre in the house. I’ve done the kids’ jumpers, my next-door neigh­bours’, my par­ents-in-law’s, I’ve done my best friend’s and even Eric the dog’s blan­kets have had a good go­ing over. I’ve even con­tem­plated of­fer­ing my ma­chine to ran­dom strangers at traf c lights just so they, too, can be free of the uff. I told the kids it was all part of my on­go­ing com­mit­ment to com­mu­nity ser­vice.

I re­ally am ob­sessed. The warn­ings are ab­so­lutely true – pilling is ad­dic­tive.

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