Household dominance – I haz it

Remember all those appliances of mine that were dying, appropriately, on Judgment Day? Well, I’ve been gradually retaking control of things. Me, myself, and I.

With the aid of an instructional video on YouTube (gotta love technology), I managed to finesse a new drive belt into place on the vacuum cleaner, and it’s now running as before — “self-propelled,” provided a human operator plugs it in, turns in on, and pushes it. It doesn’t do a damn thing by itself. Talk about false advertising.

The fridge is still making its funny noises, which I was told means the compressor is failing. However, for the time being it’s still doing its job. I guess it knows I spent two days frantically shopping and researching, and I’m now fully prepared with model numbers, stores, prices, and decisions made. If that thing so much as thinks about letting my ice cream melt, it’s gone.

But my biggest triumph came a few hours ago. The kitchen sink sprayer. That sucker had been leaking for months. Months! (That says more about me than it, I’m afraid.) So I decided to try the vinegar soak again to see if there were more lime deposits I could loosen. Not just a few hours this time, but overnight. Well, I guess it didn’t like that. It decided to spray full bore, uncontrollably, all the time.  (My sister said whenever hers does that, she checks to see if one of her kids put a rubber band around the handle.) Cursing it didn’t help. Pressing the lever repeatedly with the water on, then off, then on, didn’t stop the spraying. Holding it high overhead to completely drain the hose didn’t help. Hot water, cold water; it made no difference. Maybe running the dishwasher would do something to the pressure in the hose or something. Nope.

I went through several days with the nozzle lying in the sink to ensure I didn’t spray the room when I turned the water on. But tonight I got fed up. If the water was going to come through that hose anyway, I reasoned, then it didn’t much matter whether I wrecked the spray head or not. Right? So I started taking the sprayer apart looking for blockages and gunk, sprayed in lubricant (so what if it eats up the washers; nothing works anyway), etc. I forced the little white valve thingy up and down a few times, obviously against its wishes, screwed everything back together, pointed the nozzle into the sink and sloooowly turned on the water. After a couple of gurgles, water came from the faucet, not the sprayer! I held my breath and pushed the button on the sprayer. It sprayed! I released the button. It stopped spraying!

Hallelujah. I am woman! Hear me roar!

(Cue chorus)

5 comments

  1. This is a great story. I’ve always been blessed that the women in my life never assumed they couldn’t do something simply because they weren’t male. Your story reminds me of several occasions when one of them successfully completed some stereotypical man oriented task. For instance, I remember gushing with pride the first time my daughter came in to announce that she’d changed the oil in her car and wanted me to come see if I could find anything she’d missed. Thirty years later, she still tells people the best advice anyone ever gave her was when I got her to memorize “Righty Tighty, Lefty Losey”

    Now a note about your fridge – there’s an ordinary cooling fan under there and they are the thing that usually makes noise. If the noise is indicative of it not cooling well, that can lead to a compressor failure, but compressor failures are usually catastrophic. Meaning that they fail all at once… not over a period of time unless possibly they are slowly leaking freon and oil. If that were the case, however, you’d have noticed a diminished cooling efficiency. Your vacuum cleaner with a long thin nozzle might be able to cure this one. You can probably get at it by removing the panel on the bottom rear. Good luck!

    1. “Righty tighty, lefty loosey” has saved me so often! As for the fridge, I heard a couple of odd sounds from the kitchen one night. But they stopped before I got in there, so I don’t know where they came from. It sounded a bit like something shorting out and there was a bit of an odd smell that hung in the room for several hours. (I unplugged the toaster and coffeemaker, but they didn’t seem to be the source of the smell.) Since then I’ve been hearing an odd little “click on – 20 second hum – click off” from the fridge that wasn’t there before, like something is trying to start, but failing. It will repeat over several minutes, then stop for hours before doing it again. I vacuumed everything underneath the next day (it was badly needed!). Meantime, everything seems to cool and defrost as usual. The Sears guy said (over the phone) the clicking will gradually become more frequent until it finally dies.

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