Tag Archives: complaints

The Perversity of Inanimate Objects

I re-posted an earlier topic entitled Fix it; Break it. Naturally, as soon as I did it, the inevitable happened.  The inanimate objects in my house revolted and struck with perverse and unerring timing.  Here’s the follow-on post which, once again, applies.

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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….

Fix it; Break it

I had to get one of the many and never ending house repairs done the other day.  It demonstrated one of the immutable laws of nature – the fix it, break it phenomenon also known as the conservation of repairs.  Newton’s third law states that for every action there is an equal but opposite reaction.  Inanimate objects follow this law with a perverse vengeance.    If you are foolish enough to attempt your own electrical, mechanical or plumbing repairs and succeed in saving a hundred bucks, the objects in your house will rise up en masse, failing in rapid succession until you have spent ten times that amount on repairs and repairmen.

I unwittingly fixed a leaking toilet one day only to find a nearly flooded basement two weeks later because my ejector pump broke.  After a panicked call, my plumber, Fast Eddy, shows up, explains how bad the problem is, fixes it and relieves me of enough cash so that I can stop worrying about my next car, my next vacation or newer underwear.  In fact, Fast Eddy said that he had a similar problem in one of his houses.  One of his houses?  My plumber has more houses than I do!  I fully expect him to show up the next time in a repair van that is a combination Hummer and pimpmobile wearing thousand-dollar Max Armani coveralls.

I am, suffice it to say, not mechanically inclined.  The chances of me successfully conducting a major repair to my house are about as great as a dog reading a book.  I feel that, if scientists can believe in black holes, dark matter and exploding galaxies, I can believe in the self-curative powers of inanimate objects by constant incantations, prayers and, in extreme circumstances, human sacrifice.  Is it too much to ask them to break down during weekday hours when repairmen cost less?  To wait until after all the guests at a party have departed?  To agree upon a breakdown schedule that will not drain me of my life’s savings or require a second mortgage?

If only it were so.  Inanimate objects have their own laws:

Newton

Inanimate Object

   
1 An object at rest stays at rest and an object in motion stays in motion. An object at rest breaks when you put it in motion; an object in motion breaks anyway.
2 The acceleration of an object is directly proportional to the magnitude of the net force. The acceleration of an object’s break is directly proportional to your inability to pay for it.
3 For every action, there is an equal and opposite reaction. For every fix, there is at least one break.

So Donald Trump Walks into a Bar…

 

(With a nod to idiotprufs and List of X).

so-donald

So Donald Trump walks into a bar…

  1. and denies he ever walked into a bar.
  2. orders a drink from the bartender and tells her she would not look like a pig if she lost 20 pounds.
  3. says he knows how to drink and drinks only the best drinks.
  4. doesn’t want to be braggadocious but he likes his drinks bigly.
  5. demands that everyone except the white guys be stopped and frisked.
  6. blames Hillary Clinton for the spilled liquor and the crushed peanut shells on the floor.
  7. says that his entrance into the bar was the best entrance ever. Ever, ever, ever.
  8. requests that all Mexicans leave the bar and then re-enter it legally.
  9. runs up a tab and says that he will pay it once the audit of the tab is complete.
  10. not sure that he will pay the tab anyway because he didn’t get the service he expected.

 

Advice [with commentary]

advice

People cannot resist giving advice. Most of it is unwanted, unwarranted or useless.  Shakespeare’s Polonius, he of “Neither a borrower nor a lender be,” was full of advice and was also a deceitful old fool.  Hamlet rewarded Polonius for this advice by stabbing him: He should have stabbed him sooner.

While I am not planning to stab anyone, I am going to add my own curmudgeonly commentary to some advice and comments that I received recently.

 

Your shoes are the first thing people subconsciously notice about you. Wear nice shoes.  [Wear more if it’s cold unless you are auditioning for a job as a stripper.]

If you sit for more than 11 hours a day, there’s a fifty percent chance you’ll die within the next three years.  [So move around every 10 hours and 59 minutes.]

There are at least 6 people in the world who look exactly like you. There is a 9% chance that you’ll meet one of them in your lifetime.  [None of these people will look like Brad Pitt or Angelina Jolie.]

Sleeping without a pillow reduces back pain and keeps your spine stronger.  [Sleeping without a bed does not.]

A person’s height is determined by their father and their weight is determined by their mother.  [It’s always your parents’ fault.]

If a part of your body “falls asleep,” you can almost always “wake it up” by shaking your head.  [If your head falls asleep, you’re probably dead.]

There are three things the human brain cannot resist noticing – food, attractive people and danger.  [For men, this is defined as beer, large breasts and “honey do” lists.]

Putting dry tea bags in gym bags or smelly shoes will absorb the unpleasant odor.  [Using the tea bag afterwards will not.]

According to Albert Einstein, if honey bees were to disappear from earth, humans would be dead within 4 years. [Sooner if preceded by nuclear holocaust.]

There are so many kinds of apples that if you ate a new one every day, it would take over 20 years to try them all.  [Also true for micro-breweries.]

People who laugh a lot are healthier than those who don’t. [Unless you laugh at a Hell’s Angel.]

Our brain uses the same amount of power as a 10-watt bulb.  [Which is why we see people who have a bright idea with a 10 watt bulb over their heads.]

Our body gives off enough heat in 30 minutes to boil 1.5 liters of water.  [So if you sit in a bathtub long enough, will you heat it up?]

Stomach acid (HCl) is strong enough to dissolve razor blades.  [Be environmentally sound by swallowing razor blades after using them.]

Take a 10 to 30 minute walk every day and while you walk, smile. It is the ultimate antidepressant.  [Not true. When I take a 30 minute walk, I grimace.]

Sit in silence for at least 10 minutes each day.  [For a teenager, make it 10 hours instead of 10 minutes.]

Life is too short to waste time hating anyone. Forgive them for everything. [But don’t forget their names.]

Frame every so-called disaster with these words: “In five years, will this matter?”  [If yes, then elevate “so-called” to “cataclysmic.”]

Taking our Health for Granted

Carrie Rubin recently wrote a post – It’s Easy to Take Our Health for Granted until It’s Taken from Us – describing her mother’s unfortunate ongoing health issues.  Unlike me, Carrie’s mom has retained a sense of humor through all this adversity.  In comparison, I would bitch, moan and complain about every insignificant problem – ingrown toenail, flea bite, that zit that always arises at the end of my nose – in the vain hope that it would ward off more serious problems.

As Carrie points out “Many ailments like [her] mother’s aren’t due to our poor behaviors, and many of our poor behaviors aren’t due to a lack of willpower. Our health is such a priceless commodity […] and yet we humans purposely do things we know aren’t good for us.”

So why do we systematically take our health for granted?

Faulty logic – Many of us don’t like going to the doctor. We argue (I argue) that the results are the same:  Either the doctor tells us that we are fine in which case we did not need to go or the doctor tells us that we have a problem in which case we wish we had not gone.

Avoidance part 1 – We avoid the obvious, men in particular. The fact that we can no longer stand up straight or bend our knees or that we donate blood whenever going to the bathroom is of no significance.  If a man loses his arm, he will still not want to go to the emergency room saying “It’s okay; it will grow back.”

Avoidance parts 2 – Studies have shown that daily exercise increases longevity by three years. Of course, most of that extra longevity was spent exercising.  Take out the extra time exercising and you only increase your longevity by three days.  In the words of www.despair.com , “Hard work often pays off after time, but laziness always pays off now.”

Pleasure seeking part 1 – I was touring Yosemite National Park a number of years ago and watched what I thought were bugs crawling up the side of El Capitan, the granite monolith extending about 3000 feet from base to summit. With strong binoculars, I realized that there were several teams of climbers scaling a shear face of rock.  It was far easier for me to watch than to participate.  Thrill seeking activities come with the risk of injury, sometimes fatal injury.  On the other hand, if you are going to die of something, make it something you like. ***

Pleasure seeking part 2 – Why do we consume in excess items that are injurious to us like cigarettes, alcohol or drugs? Because, we argue, they make us feel good.  If one of these is good, then two, three or forty-nine of these must be better.  Besides, they create jobs for the Bureau of Alcohol, Firearms, Tobacco and Explosives and the Drug Enforcement Administration as well as stimulate the economy.  If we collectively stopped consuming these items that are bad for us, we would send the financial system in a tailspin.

So, put up your feet, sit back on your fat butt, take a swig of rotgut, a drag on your cigarette, and watch endless reruns on the TV knowing that you are doing your part for the health of the economy.  Sacrificing your own health was never easier.

Taking health2

 

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***Registered trademark, watermark, patent and copyright of Curmudgeon-at-Large. If you use this phrase without my permission and without sending me big bucks, a million fleas will infect your armpits.  I point out that it is not easy to train a million fleas to attack and infect armpits.