About the Colony

Either way, changing sheets is physical work

I’ve been following the controversy over fitted sheets for two reasons.

First of all, it angers me that the state can find the time to pass what I consider useless legislation to dictate how the motel industry changes its sheets while it’s unable to deal with the financial crisis and its resultant loss of jobs.

Secondly, I’m not sure it makes much difference as a worker whether changing flat sheets or fitted.

I know because I change the sheets often. I’ve always felt the husband should be willing to share in all the household chores, too.

So this whole issue was on my mind last Saturday when, after washing the sheets, I went to put them back on the bed. Fitted sheets are a little easier in that they only go on one way.

I usually get it backward and have to “slide” them 180 degrees to get the right piece for the head or foot, but other than that they just slip over the corners. But you still have to lift the mattress high enough for the elastic to pull the rest of the sheet into place.

Plus, we have one of those mattresses that weighs as much as our SUV, and it is very heavy to lift.

So flat or fitted, I think it’s a draw.

Then comes that flat top sheet. To me, this is where the work comes in. It separates the amateur from the professional. You have to flip it several times to get it in just the right place with equal parts hanging off both sides. My wife doesn’t like that I make the hospital corners so tight you can’t lie on your back because there’s no room for the upward pointing toes. She has this little way of leaving “slack” when she puts the top sheet on but I haven’t mastered that yet. But tucking in the corners is about the same physical exertion for all sheets.

The difference certainly does not warrant “intervention” by the state of California’s legislative body.

It is good that the state looks after worker safety. Short-handled shovels and hoes were certainly hard on the back.

But let’s face it, there are a lot of physically demanding jobs out there for which there is no getting around.

Folks who hang sheetrock or apply stucco to a vertical wall certainly understand that. My daughter, a hair stylist, suffers with pain in her shoulder and arms every day at work.

There is no such thing as zero risk or tired muscles. That’s something regulators can’t seem to comprehend.