I recall that my mother used to iron everything! I managed to dis­suade her from ironing bath and tea towels by explaining that iron­ing flat their fluffiness (hey! fluffiness! that's a nice word) caused a dimi­nution of capillary action and therefore ironed towels had a reduced capacity to soak up water.

I used a somewhat similar argument to stop her ironing bed linen, explaining that air is a very efficient insulator against loss or heat and that when she ironed the air out of the fluffiness (there's that word again) meant that the bed remained colder for longer. I have to say, though, that my REAL reason for getting her to stop ironing was that in wintertime I hated jumping into ironed jocks that were ice-cold because her ironing had de-aerated their fluffiness!

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