Have you ever gone into a trance while folding a pile of clothes, experiencing lucid flashbacks to your days as a Gap employee? Do you feel the need to fold shirts symmetrically, one by one, to preserve the order of the universe? If so, there's a good chance that you've been brainwashed by all of the hours you spent learning an perfecting your symmetrical folding technique. According to US labor statistics: there could be hundreds of thousands like you.
Just like carpal tunnel syndrome for computer programmers, the obsessive need to fold things might be an occupational hazard of working in the retail clothing industry. Doctors at Boston's Obsessive Compulsive Foundation say that as long as you aren't doing it for excessive lengths of time -- and you don't feel that you have to do it -- your folding habit is not a disease.
Still, all sorts of ex-sales associates are reporting that they're haunted by their deeply-ingrained folding habits. People who've been out of the business for 20+ years are finding themselves tidying up messy displays at department stores, or refolding their spouse's laundry -- because they don't do it right.
Yeah, it's a pretty disgusting habit.