Monday, September 18, 2006

Dryers, Broken Hearts, & Chicken Pot Pie.

So my mom was whining that I hadn't written anything in a while. So, here I am writing. I have been a little, tiny bit busy.

After finally getting the son situated in high school, I thought, "Whew! Now I can take a breath." I was so totally wrong.

I started a job outside the home about a week before school started. I have not done this for quite some time so it took me a bit to get myself in the swing of things. Balancing housework, yardwork, commitments to other people, the husband and so forth. It has been a challenge at the best of times. But this last week put me through the ringer.

First of all, the "new to me" dryer that we recently got, started making the most god-awful noises. High pitch squealing and screeching. Then a sound that reminded me of a card in the spokes in a bike wheel. But imagine the card is made out of a two-by-four. And the spokes, three inch thick titanium. Maybe, you just might be able to imagine what it sounded like. Oh and the squealing? It was so high pitched that when I was talking on the phone with my friend, she couldn't hear it. I guess it was at such a high octave that the cell phone couldn't transmit it. I'm not kidding. I wish I were.

So I asked my son to take the dryer apart and look at it. Three days later he got it half way apart and said, "I don't know what to do with this. Can't you just buy a new one?" "Screw it. Just put it back together," I told him. At least it still dries clothes, right?

But I few days later, I finally decided I had had enough. I had four hours before I had to be at work so I thought, "Ok. I will either fix it, or not. Doesn't matter if I mess it up, I'm prepared (although unwilling) to buy a new one anyway." I went online to a website that my friend Sonja sent to me. (clue #1: She knew about the site because this was her dryer in the first place. Sigh...) The website showed me how to take the darn thing apart. Without that site, I would of been either trying to fix it through the teeny access panel in the back, or I would of been trying to figure out how to make a magic shrinking potion so I could travel into the dryer ala "The Fantastic Voyage".

So I got it apart, and discovered that cat pee traveled under the dryer to dry there just so I would have to lay in it. I also decided to go ahead and change the belt since I was already in it. I drove a couple of miles down the road, got the belt, and compared horror stories with some other chick that was trying to fix her washer, then high tailed it home.

And when I got home, I discovered I need help to lift the drum. I called to my husband to help me for a sec, he arrived in the laundry room with a very harassed look on his face. "What?" I asked. "Nothing." he said. "What do you need?"

Now you would think that after being together for about seven and a half years he would know, that I know, always, and I mean always, what he is thinking at all times. In fact sometimes just to remind him of that fact, I call him at work (he's a bartender) and say, "She is not that hot, and the boobies are fake." Then I hang up. Usually about three minutes later he calls back, "How do you freaking do that?!?! How did you know I was looking at her?! Innocently of course." What he doesn't need to know is that any woman, at anytime could do this. All men, ok, all straight men, are looking at or thinking about a chick they either saw earlier or at the time I am calling. So it's elementary. I can almost see the smug smiles on the woman reading this while nodding. And the still confused looks on the men's faces.

But I digress. Anyway, he was annoyed because he was trying to eat his lunch. Yup. Chicken pot pie. Never mind me, who is frantically trying to fix the dryer so I can get the clothes out of the bathroom that are hanging up, so I can take a showerand get to work. Never mind the fact that I now have to be at work in about 45 minutes. Sorry to interrupt your FREAKIN' CHICKEN POT PIE! I'm ok. Kimberly is a-ok. I just smiled and asked him to lift the drum. Took him all of 5 seconds. So guess what? I fixed it! I fixed it! I went to work and told everybody I saw. I fixed my gawd darned dryer. All by myself! I practically wanted to get myself a t-shirt, that said "I fixed my dryer, you can too!"

By this time I thought I was pretty magnificent. (Hey, mom? Remember when I used to sign all my school papers "Kimberly the Great"? Well, this is how I felt.) Anyway, I had also been recently clued in on a site called . If you look at the site, you can learn more about it. But basically it's a huge classified ad thing. and it's free. I put my very ugly fridge in a free ad. I was very honest about it. The fact that it used to be yellow, and I got bored and painted purple with house paint. Blah blah blah. Someone actually took it. YES!!! It's been sitting in my driveway covered in a camo designed tarp (I guess I was hoping it would blend into the yard) for about a year. My husband had the idea that we would use it for beer or something. We don't even have a garage for cripes sake! Anyway it's GONE. WHOO HOO! Sometimes I amaze myself with my magnificence. It made me feel so good that that was out of here.

I have also been doing the Dr. Laura (I really don't like that woman, but this is for comparison reasons.) thing for my friend who recently broke up with her long time boy friend. I will spare the details, but any of the ladies out there reading this who have had a best friend, and any guys who have dated or have been married to a woman who has had a best friend, you know the time on the phone this takes. Its a strenuous job. But I would do it for her every day if I had to. That's what I'm here for. (But I don't necessarily want to. (grin) It is very stressful though. So I'm a little wiped out.

I spoke a little too soon on the Super Kimberly the Dryer Fixer Extraordanaire feeling. Last night while typing the first part of this long missive, I was enjoying the quiet hum of the dryer, when suddenly I hear a small bang, I look up and see a flash of light come from behind the dryer, a popping noise, ppfft, small puff of smoke and then nothing. Shit.

Everything stopped. I started banging around, cussing, pulling the still wet clothes out of the dryer. About a half hour later, after I had hung everything up in the bathroom again. And I had already started rearanging my finaces in my head so I could go get a new dryer the next day, I thought I should check the breaker. Mmm. It was off. So I switched it back to the on position, went over and turned the dryer back on. Works fine. Weird. The scary smoke and light show still concerns me, but it dries the clothes.

So I guess this all leads me back to the beginning. The conversation which started out with my mom whining about the blog, also included the instruction from her to never leave your clothes dryer running when you are not at home. I scoffed at the time. But not now. Because now that I am the experienced dryer "non-fixer" I run my dryer with one ear cocked to listen for a pop, and the fire extinguisher at the ready.