Wednesday, May 28, 2008

Appliances

Still snowing every day.

A friend offered me a new (very old) refrigerator. I called Matt, my personal chiropractor, to help me get the refrigerator which was perched on a dock directly across the lake from the cabin. Second to its beauty, the most distinguishing characteristic of this refrigerator is its extreme weight. It must weigh 100 pounds more than the one we already own. The water is still low which means that the inside of the boat is farther away from the surface of the dock than usual. We circled the beast a few times while we thought about how to get it from the dock and down into the boat. Eventually we got the thing on the dolly and started to lower it, with me in the boat to help ease it’s decent. Fortunately I realized it was too heavy and got out of the boat. We pondered what would happen if we let the wheels of the dolly hang over the edge of the dock. Pondering got us nowhere, so we simply let the wheels of the dolly hang over the edge of the dock. The refrigerator dropped, freely into the boat. For a brief moment I thought it was a successful drop - a happy accident if you will. Then it toppled over and landed on the outboard motor. At that moment I thought that perhaps I had just ruin both the refrigerator and the motor. We both got into the boat and water poured over the transom. We both got out of the boat. We gingerly got back in the boat and tried to move the giant appliance. If we moved it a few inches one direction it would have slipped and broken the handle (the throttle) off the motor. After many failed attempts, the chiropractor put boards under the monster fridge and we were able to slide it onto the front and middle seats of the 14 foot Gregor aluminum boat that leaks, without damaging the 15 horse power Evinrude, four stroke, outboard motor. We made it safely back to the cabin and even managed to get Moby Fridge (it’s white) out of the boat and into the cabin. This was very difficult but much easier with the help of the artist Alice Shaw. I hooked it to the gas (yes, a gas refrigerator) and it lit! But it did not draw which means it would not chill. I would have asked, "why can't you just chill?" if I didn't already know. I spent a few hours this fine, cold day cleaning out the flue, replacing the burner, and replacing the orifice – the tiny hole that allows just the right amount of gas to the burner. The good news (also the bad news): it works as well as it did before I "fixed" it. Not well. The other bad news is I ripped my thumbnail halfway off, from the side, and it hurt quite a bit. In spite of the unworky condition of the refrigerator, I put the fridge in place between the wall and stove with the help of Chicago based photographer Greg Stimac. It fit! But the door would not open. And so on…

You might want to take a break before part 2. I’ll wait.

The same night as the fridge delivery, Dr. Matt and I had also scheduled stove disposal. The stove seemed like a piece of cake (a huge piece of cast iron cake) after moving the leviathan. It went so smoothly in fact that I decided to throw in a last minute challenge. When we got to the end of the lake where Matt’s truck was waiting, I neglected to tie the bowline. When we lifted the stove and pushed it against the dock, naturally the boat drifted away. Eventually the gap was too big and the stove fell into the lake. Laughter ensued. Stove parts spilled into the lake. An oil slick emanated from the derelict appliance. Matt heroically entered the recently thawed lake and put the stove on the dolly. Fortunately for the (sort of) doc, we had (sort of) docked in a shallow location.

I think that’s enough for now.

The fridge below looks like Moby Fridge but Moby Fridge is cleaner and much bigger. I borrowed the photo from the Internet.






4 comments:

ty said...

I hope your thumb doesn't look too gross. That would be horrible.

Dennis R. Plummer said...

just me, or is there something funny about a chiropractor doing all of that back-breaking work?

becnken said...

You are my hero.
-Girl in a purple swim suit.

SA said...

You have confirmed my theory that if it weren't for heavy things most men would have no friends. In fact, I think the engineers - - men in the case of the 60+ yr old gas refer. made it extra heavy because he wanted men to bond over their shared experience of moving them. Also, our old gas stove, if one wanted to restore it, they are crazy popular now and worth a mint. Especially if your time is worth nothing in the restoring of it. And you can paint them mint to boot. As seen in this link: http://www.antiquegasstoves.com/pages/grnapt.html
If you want to pay them to restore it, well, that costs a lot of money.