Just over a year ago, I purchased a high-efficiency, front-load washing machine. One of the selling points was the gentle care it provides for clothes. Nothing in the manual said anything about the machine's hunger for buttons. I have a growing stack of shirts to be mended - a new one added almost every week.
The oddest thing about the missing buttons is that it is the button in the same position on each of the shirts - the third one down from the top.
I have been unable to even form a hypothesis as to why the same button keeps breaking. The button does break - the stitches remain behind, but the button comes out of the wash with the center missing - a tiny plastic donut.
An inanimate is incapable of malice, just as it is incapable of good. Still this cannot be a coincidence - it has happened to nine different shirts. I use the "he" rated detergent and fabric softener. I usually have small loads. I even use the machine cleaner regularly. What more, short of animal sacrifice, will it take to save future buttons?
Is there a patron saint of household appliances?