I didn't even know what you were, Shirty. You were just a really flat piece of clothing gradually being returned to the earth, or the asphalt, as it were.
On Wednesdays and Thursdays on the way to the taco truck I would look for you. My little urban mascot. Are you flatter today? Will you even be there for me? What would you look like if you were washed?
I had to know.
One day I brought a plastic bag to work and picked you up like a piece of dog doo, so my hand didn't have to touch your disgusting rain-plumped fibers.
I brought you home. I rolled you out of the bag and into the washing machine without even touching you. As mrguy mocked me for bringing your disease-ridden form into our house and into our washing machine, the rocks from 3rd street rattled around with you and made it sound as if you were trying to get out.
Fluffed and folded, I now know who you are. You are quite ugly, Shirty. It's clear why nobody stopped to pick you up when you'd fallen.
I will redeem you somehow, Shirty, even if only by this post.