Sunday, October 24, 2004
weekend hoopla pt2
With my trusty new maul handle, I went out to chop wood. For hours upon hours. Now my pectorals hurt and my back aches. I am SOOOO out of shape. I worked hard enough that after the kids went down for a nap, I decided to take a nap as well. The Mrs was going to go out shopping, but not to be out done by the rest of the family, she crawled into bed and fell asleep in my arms. This was to be a short nap. The children have decided that 90 minutes in dream-land was more than enough and began to make a ruckus. We tumbled out of bed and freed the prince and princess from their detainment. Since the Mrs did not make it out shipping, we decided to take yet another family trip, this time to BJ's Wholesale Club. Fun times for daddy! I love that place. I can get a 55 gallon of olive oil or a pallet of beef jerky and not have to explain to the wife that it did not come in a smaller size. Even the shopping carts have enough space for 2 children. HUGE. Since the kids and Mrs were with me, I had to be a tad more restrained. For every 4 things I dropped in the cart, the Financially Conservative Wife put 3 back. I still win. I got my Trenton pork roll, double pack of Sopressata Sweet Sausage and GIANT 100lb SUMMER SAUSAGE ROLL. Heh ... Daddy is having meat tonight! I also snuck in a bag of pitted dates (3lb) and I found out that they now sell Pergo at BJ's ... sweet (in both cases). Did I mention I love shopping there? I still have my membership card from college ... back in 1990. And it's valid ... member of the green label inner circle. This is back when they only took cash and you had to be part of a non-profit organization. Now you can pay with a mastercard and such. How the times change. I can still get a quarter beef carcass though. MEAT!
The evening is not complete without me doing some feat of super-daddydom. The clothes washer that my Hero-Dad and Maven-Mom purchased for us when we moved in had become 'unhinged'. One of the 4 rubber tub stabilizers had snapped and whenever the spin cycle would kick in, the thing would bang and jump about. If you have ever looked inside at the guts of a washer, it is a giant tub with a big engine bolted to the bottom. The tub is suspended from 4 flexible steel rods and loosely held in place by 4 adjoining rubber bands. They look like something you would see on a Soloflex. As a matter of course, the one that was in the most inconvenient corner had snapped in two. It took a bit of inspection and deduction, but I eventually determined how to pop off the front cover. RTFM you say? Why certainly, if I was up to spending 35$ on the manual. You see, we got this at a scratch-n-dent store in Delaware and it was 'As-Is' which meant no manual. The online manual was of no help either ... the illustration shows the front panel magically floating away from the machine proper. I tried to invoke the force to float the panel away, but it just sat there. I blame my MS for not allowing me to use telekinesis. As it turns out, all you need to do is poke two clips with a flat-head screw driver and it begins to open up. There are a few pegs and tabs you need to work with, but that is just a matter of finessing the panel a bit and ... ta-da ... it comes right off. The next part was getting the top off which required me to remove the control panel. This was a bit irritating because I needed a star-screwdriver. I had one that I bought in 1994 to work on my car because the odometer needed replacing. I never used it since. This could have stopped me cold. God coming to the rescue again, telling me to get on with it and spend more time with the kids. With 50% of the thing in parts, I could now get one hand into the back of the frame and unscrew the last connector holding the fractured damper in place. You know what will happen, the screw heads where hex and I fortunately had a hex driver that my Big Little Brother left at the Manor (Insisting that it was mine to start with). Well, the screw and hex-nut driver come out and drop to the bottom of the washer. They both promptly roll out of sight. ARRRGHHH! I was on my belly, searching the uneven bottom for a glimmer of light to betray the location of the way-ward parts. Dragging my hand through machine-oil and years of lint, I was hoping to luck out and find them. I finally became frustrated and was going to tip it on an angle in hopes of hearing the tell-tail rattle of metal on metal when I spotted the wayward parts. They had rolled to the other side of the machine, probably attracted by the magnetic engine block ... how fortunate! In no time at all, I slid the new damper in place and put the hex-nut screws back in. Then the top, control panel and front panel. Super dad is on a roll! Damn I'm good.
To cap off the evening of victory, Jacob did his potty job again and had quite a bit of success. Seems that he knows that to make water, you have to push a bit. Next time, we will have to catch him before #2 and see what he thinks of that. Once we clear that hurdle, the $$$ that we throw away in the price of diapers can be used for more ... productive purposes. And no more stinking diaper pail. That is worth the effort in spades!