The Perversity of Inanimate Objects

They’re at it again.  I wrote an earlier post on the unerring ability of all inanimate objects in and around your house/condominium/apartment to break on cue with a perverse spontaneity when you least expect it.

I had been overdue on giving a party for a group of party-going friends and finally, recognizing their raised eyebrows and scornful looks as I greedily sampled their food and drinks at their gatherings, I agreed to host one of my own.  Two days before the start of the party – too late to cancel or find a repairman – the refrigerator decided to stop working.

The refrigerator could have chosen any time it wanted to break; for example the start of a quiet week or a day AFTER the party when I didn’t need to fill it in preparation for the festivities.  But no, it knew my plans, recognized the instant of no return and – POW – just stopped working.  In reality, it had been sitting there patiently waiting for just the right moment to break down.  Let’s see – he’s made the invitations, he’s got all the groceries, bags and bags of ice and – NOW! – time to stop working.

I know that you think I’m anthropomorphizing, giving animate thought to a bunch of inanimate metal, wood and plastic.  I’m telling you that all these devices are evil incarnate.  I fully expect to wake one morning and find myself in an appliance nightmare.  I’ll be a cross between Mickey Mouse in The Sorcerer’s Apprentice and Bill Murray in Groundhog Day.  All the appliances, one by one, will rise up against me.

Suddenly, the alarm clock will wake me by ringing, then shouting and then scampering away on two little feet and smashing itself into the opposite wall.  The shower head will rise from its own hook, twist itself up like venomous viper and start spitting hot water at me.  The toaster will overheat and burn; the TV will spontaneously turn on, get brighter and brighter and explode.  The phone will ring non-stop and run away when I approach it. The dishwasher will overload with suds; the dryer will spin out of control; the coffee machine will grind itself to bits; the vacuum cleaner will chase me across the living room; the ceiling fan will spin at top speed until it pries itself loose from its mount.  In an act of desperation, I will cover my eyes and ears while cowering in the corner, whimpering to have them all stop until I’m met with dead silence.  Slowly and carefully, I open my eyes, scan the room and then close them again in relief.

Phew, it’s all been a bad dream.

Suddenly, the alarm clock will wake me by ringing, then shouting and then scampering away on two little feet and smashing itself into the opposite wall….

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21 responses to “The Perversity of Inanimate Objects

  1. My fridge did this to me after a major shopping expedition, one Summer day. I suspect it sensed my feelings of contentment and security at having a full ice box of all my favorite things. Can’t have that. So, it commited suicide and in doing so killed all the lovely steaks, dairy products and all more other favorite yummys. It is a skirmish in the rise of the machines.

  2. I had a Christmas uprising of appliances once; my stovetop, microwave, fridge and dishwasher all took leave on Christmas eve when I was hosting the next day. Thank got we’re Canadian and can just leave all the frozen food on the back porch.

  3. They always know.

    I’m leaving for another 1600-mile drive in a few days. My car has been performing faultlessly up to now. Wait for it…

  4. I had a vacuum cleaner attack me one time and not let go, but that was partly my fault. Laughing with you today. HF

  5. I can relate somewhat. As a child, whenever I entered a room I would tap all of the furniture with my hand. I was convinced that if I didn’t acknowledge every single piece, the ottoman would feel ostracized and later seek its revenge by entering my bedroom and… er, ottomizing me to death.

  6. Wait, you had a party? My blender and I weren’t even invited! Harumph.

  7. Are you familiar with the Woody Allen stand-up routine, Mechanical Objects?

  8. Genius!!! I love this because it confirms what I’ve always believed.
    Let’s just say I’ve had my suspicions. Similar to your situation, I’ve had my furnace stop working in the dead of winter, my TV cable will go out just minutes before the finale of my favorite show, and don’t even start me on power outages that coincide with the hottest days of summer. To be honest, I’m a little tired of these objects getting a laugh at my expense.

  9. Ahh Yes, A freezer Full of food just Two days after Two weeks of garden harvest and all the work that ensued. Night Mare!.I have to keep an eye on my shower head I think they are in cahoots…

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