The back yard calls this morning; excessive rain plus intermittent strong spring sunshine, plus chickens have produced the most brilliant green reflecting, it seems, half the sun light that beams down on it. Jim mowed yesterday because the grass was so high and as it usually does, it brought to mind the recurring dilemma, which is better, a lawn well mown and clearly delineated along the beds, or a wild look of different lengths of grasses, weeds with their individual growing patterns and English daisies, once sentimentally cultivated in the interest of either literature or sustainability, now lost to time and an irritating factor whether the grass is tall or short. The Siberian iris must be cut back, but I know I will never be able to dig them up, not in a million years. The next best thing will be simply to cut off chunks with the space all the way round. Will that lead to rotting and decay?But why should I waste time thinking abut it.

I’m getting carried away by dreams for the morning that may not be be going anywhere.We are in the middle, at the peak of, an appliance crisis that is my responsibility. I don’t know exactly why that should be, but I do know exactly that I’m either going to have to fix it myself or admit that I MAY have MADE A MISTAKE. Last night at dinner, while Fiona described her triumph at the track meet (First in hurdles and second in long jump,) I found myself distracted by the bits and larger pieces of a new Bissel vacuum cleaner. This vacuum cleaner is said BY THEM to have magical properties that take up all the black curly dog hair, and fly away cat hair we find making a mat on my carpet, lying loosely on our clothes, gathering into delicate piles that can pick up and move at the slightest action of a passing shoe.

Jim says I am delusional about appliances, that I have no patience. But my own view is that if I’m going to have an appliance I want it to work, and the major difficulty for me in all this is that the vacuum cleaner is only one of the players in the appliance skirmish in which I play the part of an aggrieved mistress of ineffective mechanical servants. Have I said, or suggested, that this vacuum cleaner is newly created with many technological improvements that I am expected to understand. Were it only the vacuum cleaner.  But it isn’t; it is the camera too, and the new malfunctioning dishwasher, and the countertop convection oven. I want to do a quick reprise of all this, perhaps be able to arrive at a way of thinking that will cause the least mental pain.

The oven can come first because it isn’t my fault. It is the fault of Betsy’s father-in-law. He is of the opinion that if you want something bad enough you can buy it, with this caveat. You must buy the one that costs the most. That is how you make your choice. He did not like our old toaster. Well, neither did we, but experience had taught us that there is no toaster made since 1935 that will really work. However that was Betsy’s father-in-law surprised us one day with the new oven. It only toasts on one side.  I don’t think we can buy something else. It cost too much for one thing, and it would show how little we appreciate Betsy’s father-in-law’s gifts. I call that solved.

The dishwasher was part of a triumverate of appliances sold during the recession at an eye popping saving of four hundred dollars, if you bought all three. The dishwasher had quit ; the washing machine and dryer were threatening to do the same. My part in this transaction was to say, Okay, go ahead and buy it. Now the new and supposedly superior dishwasher works just fine, unless the directions on filling it are ignored. The engineers who create this stuff expect the purchaser to practically make a study of it. The upshot here is that we often have to run the dishes through the wash twice. The idea of trying to return one part of this three part value is something that not a single one of us is able to face. Problem solved. Use it as is and bad mouth the manufacturer.

Now we come to the camera. There was a time, stuck with wanting a new hobby to go with gardening,  when I took up photography. I made some progress with my dream, going so far as to shoot the passing hours and seasons from the deck of my daughter’s country house for a whole year. Over a period of several years I learned much useful knowledge on the subject. The problem I faced involved technology and my inability to handle it with any finesse. I broke three cameras, all good ones, the last being a recent birthday present from my husband. He watched as I focussed on a bee in a calendula blossom. My film ran out. The bees legs were fat with pollen. For just a moment the possibility that the bee might wait for me overtook good sense. I opened the camera, found the film still on the roller, grabbed at it in my frustration and forever ruined the mechanism. It was so embarrassing to wreck the new camera in front of my husband. I decided that was the end. I wasn’t fit for such a thing. And here I am with a new one. Digital. Why? Problem not solved. Resolution. WILL READ ALL THE DIRECTIONS and hope for the best.

Maybe I’ll put my pride in my pocket and ask Jim to help me out. I’ll bet he will. I would love to put some on my blog.


About dorothybloom

Well, I'm a bit on the elderly side , but I'm fighting the decline with my entry into the virtual world. I've been thinking for while that my situation is worth talking a, and for this reason. There is a tension between old and new. The old are intent upon keeping their authority and the young are intent on getting it for themselves. hereThis tension is as old as the Neanderthal and many of his four-legged cousins. And I want to explore that.
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2 Responses to

  1. Lillie Anderson says:

    Maybe the problem with the new dishwasher is not the appliance but the dish detergent. If there is a film on the dishes, or if they look as if they’d been scoured, it’s the detergent. Try a liquid or another brand.

    • dorothybloom says:

      I’d really go along with that if this had happened before with our other dishwasher. Thanks for the tip though. Lille, did I tell you how mch others liked my portrait? Good feedback.

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