Not Even the Junk Guy Would Take it

barry currin, beaverdamusa.com(Note: Barry Currin’s “Dam Thoughts” is now called “Stories of a World Gone Mad.” Same stuff, different name.)

The extra refrigerator door is now gone, but it didn’t go like I thought it would go.

A few weeks back, I wrote about the appliance delivery company sending us a replacement refrigerator door we did not need. I explained how I refused to face the humiliation of trying to return it. That’s a different story, but if you want to reference it for background, you can do so, here.

Over the past couple of months, this monstrosity of a thing — and the box it rode in on — became a festering wound as it sat in the garage. On the other hand, it came in handy for setting things on I was too lazy to put back where they went.

I thought about listing a for sale ad, but come on. The person would have to be in need of a freezer door for a certain model of Amana side-by-side refrigerator, in black no less. It was a milion-to-one shot. Not worth the effort.

My most devious idea was to take it under the cover of night to an appliance store and leave it on their stoop. I even had one in mind. I just couldn’t bring myself to do it, though. I’m too empathetic for my own good, and I couldn’t bear to be the cause of the poor appliance guy losing his mind trying to figure out why this mystery door showed up on his doorstep.

I even thought some enterprising person could use it for something neat for the ol’ man cave. But, nobody wanted it. Did I mention it has in-door water, ice and a light?

So, last Saturday, I finally did it: I put it by the road for one of our local junk collectors to take.

Have you ever thrown a piece of bread into a pond full of bluegill and watch them devour it in 3 seconds? That’s how I figured this would be. I dragged it down the driveway to the road, and went back to the house and waited for the show to start. I thought I might get rid of it, plus see a good fight in the process.

A minute passed. Nothing. Then 5 minutes passed, then 5 hours, then 5 days.

There it still sat — rain drenched, bulky — and all-the-while killing a coffin-sized piece of grass in the yard.

The whole time I wondered what is wrong with these people who will scoop up a blown toaster oven or a mangled lawn chair, but ignore something brand new. The box even said “Authorized Whirlpool Factory Parts” on the side. Who wouldn’t be curious enough to peek inside?

Once, my garbage can was so heavy, I wrote “Sorry” on a sticky note and stuck it to the lid along with a $5 bill. But I just couldn’t pay someone to take it off when I knew the Public Works Department would snatch it on their next run.

And that’s just what happened. Earlier today, here came the big, loud Public Works truck with its mechanical arm and the rusty claw of death.

Yes, it is finished, it is gone. And, yes, I feel badly about it. But, I learned a junk man needs an extra refrigerator door about as badly as I need a broken-down lawn chair.

Buying a Refrigerator? Then Get Your Crowbar

dam thoughts, barry currin, beaverdamusa.comAfter 20 years, our old refrigerator died a few weeks ago. I would like to say that it was trouble free, but it wasn’t. I had replaced most of the original parts over that time. When it was too much for me to handle, we would “call the man.”

But we knew “the man” couldn’t do anything this time, so we measured our space and reluctantly went shopping.

We needed a fridge that would fit in a 67-inch x 36 inch hole.

Won’t they all?

Nope.

Well, will any of them?

“I can order one,” the sales people kept saying.

One dufus said, “We have these that fit in a dorm room.”

Thanks, dufus. Call me back when you’re even old enough to live in a dorm room.

So now we’ve supersized the height of refrigerators in the last 20 years. Let’s see, Americans are eating our more and cooking less than ever before, but for some reason, we have to make refrigerators taller than the spaces which are built to fit them. How many pizza boxes must a refrigerator hold at once, people?

Finally, we found one here in town at one of those huge national chain stores.

We’ll take it. “When can you deliver it?”

“We can’t deliver this one,” the sales person said. “It was a customer return.”

“Well how do I get it home?”

You would’ve thought I asked him if he knew the atomic bomb launch codes.

“We can go over here and order you one online,” he said.

Let me get this straight. We can order one from a warehouse somewhere, and you will deliver it free. But you can’t take this one 7 tenths of a mile to my house…

So we went home, and we ordered it online. It would be here in a week.

Just so you’ll know, we do have a small spare refrigerator in the garage, which we were making do with during the hunt. It really made me appreciate having cold food in the house. I am considering using the concept, though, as a way to raise awareness for obesity. I think my “Hiking for Cheese” event could be bigger than the Relay for Life.

A week later, here came the delivery truck. I was expecting two 300-pound guys with my refrigerator. Instead I got Skinny Pete with a tape measure.

“We’ve got a small problem,” he said.

Yes, I know we do. You’re carrying a tape measure instead of my fridge.

He pointed to one of our interior doors. “This door facing is going to have to come off.”

“Do you mean to tell me that I had to search the world over for one that would fit vertically, and now you’re telling me that they’re making refrigerators bigger than the door that leads to the kitchen?”

I’d been Hiking for Cheese for 3 weeks. I wasn’t about to let Skinny Pete drive off with our fridge on his truck.

“Wait here. I’ll get the crowbar.”

“I can’t be in the home when any demolition is going on,” he said. “Company policy. And when we get it in there, I won’t be able to hook up your ice maker or that will void your warranty.”

So Pete instructed me to rip off the door facing, and call his company back when we were ready for them.

So we did. And after about another couple dozen Hikes for Cheese they showed up again. I managed to complete the task of screwing in the ice maker hose; and I am fairly certain our new wider-than-a-door but shorter-than-the-space fridge has an un-voided warranty.

I miss the pre-internet days of going to the store and actually buying something; but having to open an account and creating yet another username and password still beats Hiking for Cheese.

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