If you want a lively conversation starter at a party, just mention “sheets.”
That’s “sheets” as in bedding, not paper (although, for all I know, people might be quite animated about their GSMs (weight in grammage) and watermarks, too.
A week or so ago as I was making the bed, I started wondering if hospital corners have gone the way of rotary phones in our society.
Does anyone know how to make hospital corners anymore? Does anyone even know what they are?
For those of you with that deer-in-the-headlights look on your faces right now, hospital corners are a certain way of tucking in top sheets at the bottom of the bed to get a crisp look and a tight fit so that the sheets stay snug when you sleep.
Hospital corners aren’t difficult to make; if you’re interested, there are plenty of how-to videos online.
However, many of you won’t need the videos. It turns out that, yes, other people know what hospital corners are.
I know this because I asked a group of people with whom I was sitting at a party the other night, and many of them did know — although not all use the technique.
Some people swear by the method. Others don’t like that constricted feeling on their feet.
Regardless, everyone was pretty staunch in their opinions on the topic.
People also care a lot about a lot of other aspects of making a bed. For example, I learned that I’m not the only one who makes the bed first thing in the morning. The karma of the house just doesn’t seem right otherwise.
And I learned that I’m not the only one who loves throw pillows on a freshly made bed — nor am I the only one with a husband who viciously yanks them off of the bed and throws them onto the floor each night.
How often do you wash your sheets?
This is another topic that people feel strongly about.
One friend said that she heard a radio show on which people were asked this question — and one interviewee actually didn’t know that people were supposed to wash their sheets. Like, ever!
I, along with most of the people in the conversation at the party, change sheets once a week. If you feel that this is overkill, just Google “dead skin cells in bed.” You’ll change your mind in a hurry.
Who makes the bed in your family? How many sets of sheets do you own to interchange on the bed? These are also highly emotional issues.
Of course, the people in this conversation were all in my age range: 50s.
But does this generation care about sheets?
I would guess not. Anymore, a lot of people don’t even use a top sheet, according to the internet.
I still use a top sheet and make hospital corners. My mother taught me this skill, which came in handy at sleepover summer camp, where an inspector tested our bed-making skills by bouncing quarters on the beds to test their tightness.
Other than that, I can’t say that knowing how to make hospital corners has contributed to any sort of success in life, except on the personal satisfaction level.
My daughter, a millennial, is not a big fan of hospital corners. But she did affirm that I taught her how to make them. She also said that I made her use them when she made the bed.
I don’t remember doing that, but, hey, I won’t apologize. I’m just sorry that I never had the opportunity to teach her how to use a rotary phone.