In last month's column, I made the mistake of calling out my favorite appliance in my house: You may recall I said my Crock Pot was my "best friend forever."
At the time, that didn't feel like a mistake. After all, doesn't everyone regularly pit their small appliances against one another in a bid for their affections, and then publish the results in a newspaper, or is that just me?
I should have known better. No sooner had the AFN hit the driveway than our van blew something called a "head gasket," and then the van (wait, did I say "van?" I meant, "cherished, beloved, paid for automobile") required something called "the gross national product of Peru" to have all those gaskets replaced.
Then, in an effort to play one-upsmanship to its highest level, our washing machine checked out with a blown pump that made it sound like a helicopter was touching down in the laundry room every time we hit the spin cycle.
So, before I drown in unwashed clothing, I'm retracting my earlier statement, and now say that the van and the washing machine (did I say "washing machine?" I meant, "gracious dispenser of fluffy clean clothes") have actual Top Billing in my Appliance Hall of Fame and we all have matching bracelets saying as much (of course, we can now phone it in that the sedan and my iPad have now heard this latest declaration and are quietly plotting their revenge).
The catastrophic failure of the washing machine pump is, of course, a First World problem. Somewhere in the darkest Stone Age village there's a toothless old woman wearing a sarong, banging her clothes against a rock, who would be amazed and grateful to just have running water, forget about the automatic bleach dispenser and the lavender-scented rinse.
Even so, I'm jealous of her because she has a better chance of having clean underwear tomorrow.
The repairman hasn't come yet (if he shows up soon he can be my new BFF, too), but when he does I'm laying odds that he'll find that something has inexplicably worked its way out of some teen-aged boy's pockets and has gotten lodged in the skunkworks, so to speak. This is a safe bet, because I've pried these "somethings" out from under the agitator before, the major categories of which include Electronics (iPods, cell phones, Nintendo game chips), Scout Paraphernalia (camping knives, merit pins, metal belt loops), and Toys (even today, we're talking Legos, Star Wars Tie fighters, and little Army men).
Epilogue: The repairman (did I say "repairman?" I meant, "Brad, The Best Guy Ever!") did show and he notably did not find a headless Wookie jammed in the pump. As feared, the washer had performed the appliance equivalent of storming out the door in a snit when it heard that I was more in love with my slow cooker. So listen up, washing machine: When the choirs of angels sing, the cherubim and seraphim are accompanied by the most beautiful music in the world, which is of course your own sweet spin cycle.
I'm signing off now. Try not to be jealous: I'm gonna hang out with my new BFF and celebrate by running 12 loads of laundry and give it Downy shots and chase ‘em down with Oxi-Clean.
• Ahwatukee Foothills resident Elizabeth Evans can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org. Her column appears monthly.