Pando

In praise of things that (almost) just work: Rinse

By Paul Bradley Carr , written on May 11, 2016

From The Sharing Economy Desk

Last week I wrote a brief post in praise of things that just work. Today, in part two of that series, let’s talk about something that almost just works: Rinse.

The first I heard of the company, it was described to me as “laundry made easy” which is a bit like promising “changing a lightbulb made easy.” There are certain things that are already easy for an adult and don’t require technology to make them more so.

It was only after seeing the ten thousandth bus ad for Rinse that I realized they also promise to make dry cleaning easy. Now we’re talking.

And so, last week, I signed up for my first Rinse. And, yeah, it was pretty easy. Easy and cheap: $2.50 to dry clean or launder and press a shirt, $7 for a sweater -- all including free door to door delivery in three days.

This being my first use of the service, the “expert valet” arrived -- at midnight, two hours later than promised -- clutching three separate bags, for different types of laundry. They also gave me a “door hook” in case I’m ever damn fool enough to want to leave my clothes hanging outside the house for collection. The “expert valet,” who was perfectly nice but seemed no more expert than a Postmate, apologized for being late (she’d had to drive from Sacramento or somewhere equally ridiculous), and took my shirts and sweaters. Last night, exactly when promised, they were returned -- laundered and dry cleaned.

That’s it, really. Lateness notwithstanding, Rinse works. I’ll probably use it again.

In the next installment, I’ll tell you about how a Task Rabbit murdered my couch and lost my bookcase. But don’t worry! The story has a happy ending!