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May 06, 2008

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I've never destroyed a major appliance, but I did kill my printer by dropping my engagement ring inside of it. I had to dissect and then reassemble it to retrieve my ring, and ever since then, it won't print the right third of the page.

And when I was a teenager, I fried my dad's computer when I discharged a load of static electricity into it. (Socks on carpet in winter, not my fault, I say.)

And just last year I fried an expensive piece of equipment at work by plugging it into 220V instead of 110.

It's not a major appliance, but I blew up a pot of hot oil on the stove. It went everywhere.. and I refuse to explain what stupidity brought it on because I just can't get over that I was THAT stupid. Thankfully nobody was hurt....and I had a huge bottle of Dawn dish liquid to help remove oil from every surface in the kitchen including the ceiling. I vote for "let him read it on the blog"!

I have two words to explain this recent turn of events:

1. RE

2. TARDED

on the bright side, there are tons of gorgeous dishwashers waiting for you at the appliance store, and I bet they (a) do a better job and (b) use less power and water than your newly-dead one. And as major appliances go, dishwashers are relatively cheap. At least it wasn't a fridge, or a stove.

I don't think I've ever destroyed any major appliances, but I was there once when my brother completely formated and wiped clean the hard drive of our dad's work "laptop". This was in the mid to late 80's, and the laptop was a Compaq, the size of a tower computer with a full size keyboard that also served as the cover for the impressive 6" or so monitor. My brother typed in the magic DOS command FORMAT C:, answered that yes, he was sure, then got worried and said "Dad....." He was about 8 or 10.

When I was about 10, I took it upon myself to defrost the freezer by chiseling at the ice with a butter knife. You can figure out how this story ends.

hmmmrmphjkjsd i wasn't 10 when I defrosted the freezer with a kitchen knife...had removed it completely but it all floods back now...

I've never murdered an appliance, but I have been stalked by my gas range for five years now. I'm trying to figure out how to kill it before it finally kills me, so if anyone knows how to stealthily disable it (so my landlord never suspects when I demand a new one), please, please tell me!

I tried to kill our TV twice:

Waaaay back when TVs had V- and H-hold, our V wouldn't hold too well. I fiddled with the knob to no avail. Then I tried the Fonzie trick: I gave it a good hard whack. The screen went a sickening green color, then winked out of existence.

A few years later I rested a bowl of hot noodle soup on top, where it teetered and finally tipped, dumping all of that golden broth into the vent. zzzzap.

That TV lived for 13 years before finally giving in. Sony Trinitron, RIP.

Does it count if I pretended it was dead? I once had a ceramic pie plate EXPLODE while I was taking a key lime pie out of the oven. I shut the oven door, went to the bakery for a replacement dessert, and didn't open the oven again for 6 months. It still has a few remnants of key lime pie (a couple years later), but it works OK.

If you dishwasher has a garbage disposal built in, that noise is probably the disposal trying to do it's job. Else the stones should be in the filter.

Does the dishwasher work? Mine sounded like a dying transmission for six months before it stopped washing.

I killed a garbage disposal by dropping a penny into it. Total jam. The current disposal has successfully eaten a 1/2 pint Ball jar.

I heard that same sound come from my washing machine and called the repair guy to tell me why it was doing that and make it quit. The embarassment came when he pulled the underwire from my bra out from under the agitator. I know now why you should hand wash those things. Love your blog, btw.

All right, lets see. Here's the list (at least as much as I'll allow myself to remember):

1989 - purchased a Smith Corona electric typewriter with a small amount of memory and semi auto correct for $500 that I did not have and promptly spilled a glass of wine into it. Rinsed with water, blew it dry and took it back claiming to have no idea how or why or what.

1993 - after having assisted the motor of our very old washer during a spin cycle (you kind of had to push on it to help it get started and therefore the front panel was always off),I climbed aboard for a wild ride (I figured what the hell) and apparently my added bulk (all of 110 lbs at that point) completely destroyed the motor and blew just about every fuse in the house.

1997: While being harassed by UK security about the state of my Compaq computer, proceeded to take it apart with my handy dandy teensy screw driver set and managed to render it completely useless from that point forward (guessing I mangled the mother board).

And my all time favorite which is mostly my favorite because it was performed by my second husband and would have been riotously funny if not for the collateral damage:

2001 - having just had our boiler replaced, my second husband was entrusted (and instructed) by the plumber to bleed our radiators. Husband opend the wrong end of the radiator spraying gallons of hot water into the acoustic tile ceiling and raining down in chunks into the television and stereo, neither of which survived. He then proceeded to take my brand new Miele vacuum cleaner (you do the math now please) and use it as a wet vac on the sopping chunks of acoustic tile. It took me two more years to divorce him.

I will not discuss car flippings, driving under gas trucks, totalings on the Long Island Expressway or anything else involving me or moving vehicles. That ought to about do it.

Well I have a graveyard of broken blenders in the basement because I am too stupid to buy a sturdy margarita maker once and for all. You would think that if the durned thing was marked "Ice Crusher", then it would crush the dang ice - right?

But here is a tip I rely on heavily in my house - if it's making a mysterious noise, you just need to make more noise to cover it.

I find that Immigrant Song by Led Zeppelin covers most household horrors quite satisfactorily.

AND THE WINNER IS...Vicki, with her engagement ring in the printer, which now only prints out on one side. I know it's not really an appliance, but it's more of a gut decision, with an engagement ring being involved and the piece of machinery still royally fucked up to this day. Go say hi: http://madball911.blogspot.com/

A close second was Cyndi with the underwire in the washing machine, because who wouldn't want to have that conversation with a repairman? Like a plumber lecturing you about flushing tampons down the toilet. I've heard.

A close third was Jess with the soup inside the TV. Oh, I feel so much better now!

As for the rest of you:

Lily VS: Led Zeppelin is a good, much cheaper strategy.

Alecto: Why were you riding the washing machine again? P.S. Regarding 2001, I think your divorce was a better reward for that one than bacon band-aids would ever be!

ntsc: We have no disposal, so yes, they were stuck in the filter along with a whole bunch of other things the repairman found. Turns out they probably would have flushed out eventually, but I've been burned by broken glass once before. On the upside, I now know how to dismantle my dishwasher. And how to make worthless rhinestones suddenly worth $100.

Erin: My favorite part was the leaving it there for 6 months. That pie totally deserved it.

Ann: I have another goblet if you want to try your luck.

Ilva: What's wrong with chiseling at your freezer with a butter knife?

Heather: Isn't anyone going to tell me how this ends?

Robin: Doh! Stupid DOS.

Anita: Ah, but if it were a stove, at least I'd have an excuse to replace it with a cute, sexy one.

Husband: Ever the supportive spouse!

April in CT: Sooo glad no one was hurt. I will now confess that I have (in the past) boiled cans of condensed milk for hours on end to make dulce de leche, despite warnings that contents may explode under pressure. Now I buy it already made (but it's not as good).

Hooray for bacon bandaids! They'll go well with my "Meat is murder: tasty, tasty murder" T-shirt.

I almost set the house on fire last week. I put too many pillows in the washing machine and it was on the spin cycle for... like... EVER and I didn't even notice. The husband looked at me and said "hasn't that been spinning a really long time". That was followed by a "what's that burning smell". One of the pillows got stuck somewhere and was rubbing something and the result is a burned pillow... but luckily the washing machine is okay.

There was the time our mutual friend Zach was diagnosed with mono just before the start of winter baseball workouts in college. He was so angry, he kicked the mini-fridge in our dorm room and sort of mangled the door. But it still worked.

Fast forward a month. Zach gets a call from health services that he's healthy. He immediately races to the gym for a three-hour workout. While he's gone, health services calls back. Whoops. They were reading the wrong test. Zach still has mono and he needs to TAKE IT EASY.

As the message finished, I shot a sad glance at the mini-fridge. "You're fucked, buddy," I thought.

I was right. By the time Zach finished with it, it looked the copier in Office Space. We threw it out a few days later.

Garbage disposal: Shoved too much shit in it, forgot to turn it on until the next time...Ooops.

Microwave: Never. Nuke. An. Egg. (That was actually my dad, ages ago)

And, of course, the dishwasher, when I was little. Not actually broken, just had a LOT of soap to clean up.

Come to think of it, I've done that with the clothes washer too....

Deanna: Wow, an egg in the microwave. Go, Dad!

Hater: I think you mean fax machine. That's an awesome story, though. I'm surprised he had any energy left to beat the crap out of anything!

Sis: Even though you said washing machine, I totally got it in my head that you had packed 15 pillows into the dryer with no air space at all, which had me cracking up. If it had caught on fire, you totally would have won!

Vicki: You'll have a whole ensemble!

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