Thursday, November 5, 2009

A Clean Peace

And now - a tirade.

For several days now I have been attempting to clean our refigerator.  Noble cause, you say.  And I would agree.  Except for this fridge.

This fridge is a fridge like no other.  During our pre-child, apartment dwelling years, it was only a happy dream of which Jason and I hardly dared speak.  THE refrigerator - the one we would one day buy when we bought our first home.  Our hopes were high.

Then, we bought it.  THE one.  The shining, black beauty of a fridge with all the features that had danced like proverbial sugarplums in our heads.  We settled it carefully in our new home.  We were in love.

Things went well - until the drawers began to lose little slivers of white plastic.  Where were they coming from?  Could we glue them back on, somehow?  Then several small wheels appeared - apparently broken off from regions unknown.  Again, we could not find their home.  They were relegated to live, gypsy-like, in the back of the fridge; in the wilds behind the drawers.

I began to feel stirrings of concern.

Then, the fridge tried to kill us.

It was summertime; Jason was away at his two-weeks training with the Navy Reserves.  Siennalee and I had just gotten home from being out when - sniff sniff.  What was that disturbing odor?  I tracked it.  Unsettling memories were surfacing in me - memories from childhood when the spatula or random plastic cup would fall to the bottom of the dishwasher and melt on the heating element.  It was a burning stench that told one "something is very very wrong."  

I tracked the burning stench to the fridge.  Opened the doors.  HEAT resonated out!  STENCH of melting, burning plastic!  The fridge lights glared at me.  I closed the fridge doors quickly.  Opened them again.  GLARE!  STENCH!  Closed them again.  Ran back and forth in a frantic little line of panic.  Finally, I opened the doors again and now saw the light cover that was literallly dripping away from the burning lights.  The lights were not switching off.  

I ran to the garage and pulled the breaker, heart pounding in my ears.  Who would help?  Jason was away.  Sears!  They would know what to do. 

The Sears guy came out promptly.  "Good thing you came home," he threw over his shoulder as he looked over my fridge, "The whole thing coulda gone up in flames."  He stepped back, surveyed my fridge, scratched his head and said something in technician-speak.  What?  He repeated it.  

"You mean,"  I tried to interpret his words in easier-to-understand girl-language, "it's my fridge's motherboard?" 

"My fridge doesn't know to turn off its lights?"  The motherboard.  Somehow, my fridge was not listening to its motherboard and the lights were not shutting off.  My fridge was in rebellion.  My fridge was a teenager.  Great.  This was not the happy dream I'd dreamt with Jason throughout our years of enduring apartment refrigerators.

"But we bought a Kenmore,"  I said, helplessly, "Kenmore and Whirlpool - those are your best brands."

The Sears guy, after somewhat trying to conceal a smirk at my precious naivety, explained that those brands had long ago been bought out by the cheaper brands.  They were all the same now, he confided.

I was dumbfounded.  

Whenever we'd done any household appliance shopping, I'd been adamant to Jason that we would only buy Kenmore, Sears' best brand - at least, it had been Sears' best brand back in the college days that I 'd worked part-time for a small appliance repair shop.

But now, apparently, things had changed.

So, almost $500 later, my one-year-old fridge had a brand new "motherboard" and a new plastic light cover and two spanking new light bulbs.  Our beautiful, wonderful fridge.  The fridge that had cost more than my first car.  I was brokenhearted.

"Could this happen again?"  I asked the Sears guy, fearfully.

"Might."  He shrugged.

"So... what brands should we look for the next time we buy?"  I asked the Sears guy, weakly. 

"Doesn't really matter," He told me, matter-of-factly.  Apparently now buying appliances was going to be a crap shoot.

All this my fridge and I reminisce of as I clean the drawers, ignoring the shedding plastic splinters and wipe the walls, hoping the lights go back off after I shut the doors.  At several points as I clean, the lights randomly shut off - which I take to be a good thing - the fridge is listening to and obeying its motherboard.  I close the doors and let the fridge re-cool, reasoning that if I'm kind to the fridge, perhaps it will continue to be kind to me and my family.  No more attempts on our lives.  I appreciate this.

So now, after several times of closing the doors, grabbing a book and letting the fridge re-cool, ignoring the random plastic pieces being shed - now my fridge is clean.  We live in an uneasy peace.  But it's a clean peace... for now.


Jen Rouse said...

Hilarious! And, that is the weirdest thing I've ever heard. Who would ever believe that your FRIDGE could catch on fire? That's the last thing I would ever imagine as the cause of a fire.

Chad, Sus, Linley and Piper said...

I love it! Not your rebellious fridge but the telling of it!

Sarah and the Gentlemen said...

OH. MY. COW. Your refrigerator is like Christine, the hateful car.

Seriously? What was wrong with the little button that gets pushed and turns the light out when the door closes? Hmmm? Now fridges have "motherboards"?

It's just too much for me.

Momae' said...


Rebekah said...

I am dying! So funny....