Put it aside, while you unpack more urgent items (legos, running shoes you never wear).
Forget where "aside" is.
Periodically come across "lost clothesline" while on other errands in toolshed.
Do a bunch of other stuff - meet new friends, go camping, eat good food, ride bikes, make love, read to your children, meditate, pet your dog, bake gluten-free cookies, etc.
On a beautiful January morning declare that you are going to install a retractable clothesline.
Find a suitable place to mount it.
If you can find a pencil, mark where you need to drill the holes. If you don't have a pencil, just etch little marks with the screws. Just find a pencil. Pencils are handy. Keep one in the toolshed.
Grab a couple of sturdy woodscrews. Carefully use the drill to screw them into place. Know where the drill is.
Take the housing of the retractable clothes line and hang it on the screws. Unless the heads of the screws are too big for the holes on the housing of said clothesline, in which case, take a manual screwdriver (because you've probably already put the drill away) and laboriously unscrew the screws.
If there is a small child around, now is the perfect time to set them up with paints!
Back to the job at hand! Hold the housing of the clothesline with one hand, hold the wood screw with the other, hold the...
You're smart with opposable thumbs. Mount the clothesline to the exterior wall of the toolshed.
Wrap a bungee cord around the crepe myrtle on the other side of the yard.
Run the clothesline across the yard and hook to the bungee cord. Pat yourself on the back for not having to dig a hole, pour concrete and mount a post for the other end of the clothesline, and for not nailing anything into that beautiful tree.
Catch that little boy with blue paint all over his hands!
Admire your work.
Take a picture for your blog.
Go over and give it a tug.
Notice that the retractable-ness of the retractable clothesline doesn't seem to be working. Any clothes you put on there are going to dip the whole line down towards the dirt patch that is your backyard.
Pull on it a bit. Unhook it from the bungee cord and retract it. Pull it again.
And again. it might be like that seatbelt in the old car, the one that would sometimes not catch? And then it would really work and you'd be pinned against the seat, afraid to exhale, because then you'd be pinned even more!
The painted one wants to go inside. Set up the train track for him. Do it wrong. Do it just as instructed, but don't be surprised if you are still wrong.
Sneak away to unload the washer and bung it all in the stupid dryer.
Your daughter isn't feeling well, and asks you to read to her. You two don't get to do that nearly enough, and so you snuggle in and read The Evolution of Calpurnia Tate.
An hour or so later, go back outside.
Attempt to open the housing and repair your cheap, Made in China, retractable clothesline, unless it's not made to be opened, ever.
In which case, take some strong scissors and cut the clothesline out.
Devise a plan. It involves a leftover piece of 1 x 2 wood, the drill, the new saw.
Attempt to cut the wood in half with the saw.
Paint a train for the boy at his request.
Back to the saw. Muddle through. Perservere!
Drill a hole big enough to thread the clothesline through, in the middle of each piece of wood.
If the drilling doesn't seem to go as quickly as you'd like, do not lean harder. You are wearing closed toe shoes (despite the balmy 76 degrees), right?
Thread the clothesline through the holes. You should have something resembling a very long garotte cord.
Find a good place to mount one end.
Find the right sized screws.
Unearth the drill again.
Wonder why the drill is taking so long to sink the screws.
Admire the freshly painted compost bin.
Lean into the drill as if you were a big burly man.
Watch, in slow motion, as the drill veers off to the left and implants itself into that opposable thumb you're so proud of.
Yelp like a pup, but don't drop the damned drill.
Catch a glimpse of painted boy v 2.0 scampering into the house.
Follow him. Now.
Run a bath (sadly, this is not for you, but for that little blue boy).
Go back outside and put the tools away. This job can wait until another day. It's okay to focus on the stuff you're good at, like turning a heel on a handknitted sock.
Take the clothes out of the dryer and fold them.