First world problems: Our dishwasher stopped draining on Saturday. We pulled it out, looked at the stuff we could look at without disconnecting anything, and concluded it wasn’t likely anything we could fix. So I put out a request on Facebook for a recommendation for a repair service. A friend gave me the name of someone a neighbour had used for their own dishwasher problem. I looked at their Facebook page and Googled, and what I discovered that this was a single guy working out of his house with 30 years’ experience and a lot of very positive reviews, including several consumer awards.
Precisely the kind of guy I was looking for.
He came over a little past noon, donned a mask, hummed while he worked confirmed it wasn’t a blockage, and that the buzzing sound we were hearing was likely a broken water pump –again, what we were expecting based on a little Google diagnosis we’d done. He’ll be back tomorrow to put in the pump. Assuming he’s as good as his reviews have said, I think we’ll have gained an appliance repair guy.
He also mentioned in passing that the average dishwasher lasts about 8 years–which is sad. I remember the dishwasher at my house growing up lasting for at least twice that. The tendency now seems to be to replace the whole thing rather than repair–which is something I want to, as much as possible going forward, to actively fight against. I still remember when one of the parts on my mother’s old Kenmore sewing machine broke in the mid-90s, and the repair person told me the part wasn’t made any more and it would be easier to buy a new one. So I acquired a new machine and gave the old one back to my Dad–who promptly found a place to get it fixed. I now have that machine again, of course, and it hasn’t had an issue since. It’s solid metal, made in the 1970s, and was made to last–and it has, consistently outperforming my much newer machine.
Now that we’re seemingly moving into an era where frugality may be a greater virtue than conspicuous consumption, where skills like building gardens and sewing are suddenly gaining new prominence, I hope the trend of learning how to keep your existing stuff running rather than simply writing it off continues–whether that means hiring a local serviceperson or learning to fix it yourself. The latter had started to become more popular in the past four or five years, with various fix-it clinics for people interested in learning how to do it themselves had started popping up. Perhaps once I’m able, I’ll look to attend one of these and maybe learn some basic machine and home maintenance skills. I come by my DIY genes honestly from my dad, and I’ve always had a bit of a desire to learn more. In the meantime, I’ve hopefully got Windmill Bob to help.
Today in history in 1935, Track and field athlete Jesse Owens equaled or broke 4 world records in 45 minutes at a Big Ten meet at Ferry Field in Ann Arbor, Michigan. This is remembered as as “the greatest 45 minutes ever in sport”. Owens was an Ohio State athlete at the time, and there’s a memorial plaza devoted to him in front of Ohio Stadium (aka the ‘Shoe). There, a sculpture commemorates his more famous feat – the following year, he won four gold medals at the 1936 Olympics in Berlin, confounding Adolf Hitler. There’s also a new outdoor stadium at OSU named in Owens’ honour.