I’m cleaning all our broken things, in hopes they’ll spontaneous un-break themselves. I’d settle for a temporary reprieve, just time enough for me to decide how to replace them. So wiping, washing, vacuuming and polishing I whisper, C’mon you’ve got a few more miles or days in you…but my reeks-of-coolant car and my warm fridge don’t answer back.
Our car, a 2003 silver Civic, has been overheating (periodically) for months, even though I frequently top off the coolant and tighten down its shiny new radiator cap. The original diagnosis—a blown head gasket—a grand-plus repair job. Eek. Really? That’s about the car’s trade-in value. So, armed with the mechanic’s bad news and the knowledge of my meager retirement account, I suggest less expensive possibilities. After all there’s no white smoke coming out the tail pipe or tell-tale clacking sounds, as skeptical friends have pointed out. The nice gray-haired mechanic with the grease-stained hands and smart-as-a-whip eyes only nods at my alternate realities, while dropping the new cap into my hand. He knows I’ll be back.
Then there’s the refrigerator, which creeps up to a balmy fifty-five while the freezer sinks to a frigid twenty below. After YouTube-ing the situation we diagnosed the problem as a bad defroster coil, but that doesn’t explain the ice in the bottom of the freezer…so I poured boiling hot water into the freezer’s drain and later that evening the fridge got a little cooler, 48-ish, and the freezer crept slightly above temperatures found on the scientist’s Kelvin scale. Remember absolute zero from science class? Alas, like the car, the fix only sort of worked.
So I wipe the smudges of the glass shelves of the Hawaii-warm fridge, which may be festering a hearty strain of kill-you bacteria. At least it’s clean. Reminds me of the advice: “Always wear fresh undies, because you never know!”
Love and Lettuce,