July 26, 2006

Gimme a Break!

I have a friend at church who claims every couple should get a shower every ten years. Why? Because by then all the stuff they got has started to wear out. We're a little ahead of schedule, because our ninth anniversary is coming up in December and we've already replaced almost everything in the last few years.

Of course, the crystal vases are fine and we're still using some of the towels, though they've been relegated to the upstairs, less used bathroom for some time. The iced tea maker and the Black & Decker Mini-chopper are still going strong. The Good Housekeeping Cookbook I got isn't one I use heavily now, but it is still a great reference and I pull it out more often than you'd think.

Other things just haven't survived. Our crockpot lost a handle a long time ago and finally started acting up a year or two later. The toaster oven caught fire (not from any bread crumbs in it, but from a bad heating element). We've replaced all those things over time and I've briefly been a bit sad for the loss of the wedding loot as I pitched out the broken items.

The one item I both longed to have die and also dreaded dying the most was our vacuum cleaner. As one of our wedding presents, we were given what should have been (judging by the price) a very nice upright Hoover. However, ever since the first time I used it in our very first apartment and it slipped a belt causing it to emit funny odors and stop sucking stuff up, I haven't exactly been fond of it. Over the years, it has travelled the country with us and I've spent a lot of time putting the &#*@) belt back on.

When we moved into our current house, even the movers made fun of our upright vacuum in a house with no carpets, but I have continued to drag it out for all the area rugs and to sweep and dust mop everything else. But I have hated that vacuum all along and while I hated it, my husband managed to think even less of it (even if his relationship with it was less close than mine).

A year or so, I accidently (really, I didn't mean it) ran over the cord and the vacuum, thinking that it was a lawn mower started eating the cord. Although I didn't really want to spend the money on a new one, I was some what hopeful. Had I killed it? Was the day of liberation from the Hoover finally at hand. Sadly, a bit of electrical tape and the thing kept right on going -- slipping belts here and there, but never offering to spark or act dangerous.

I finally out lasted the thing though. Two weeks ago, it stopped picking much of anything up. The bag wasn't full, the belt hadn't (for once) slipped out of place, and not only had the suction ceased being up to par, it was making a huge internal racket, as if it had started canniblizing its insides.

This time, I wasn't about to pay for a repair man to look at it. I started researching canister vacuums before the corpse was even out of the closet. I found what I wanted. I found an even better price with cheaper shipping for the same thing new on eBay, and I snapped it up. It arrived in three days and while I can't say I love vacuuming, I must say that I do have a great affection for the new little Bosch in the closet. Let's hear it for the Germans (but don't mention the war)!


About a year ago we broke down and bought an expensive Oreck vacuum and we love it! It has a 25 year warranty that we fully intend to take advantage of if it breaks! Sometimes you just have to buy the best or you end up repeatedly buying the same thing over and over at Walmart!

Posted by: Randi at July 26, 2006 08:18 AM

This church "friend" sounds like the kind of person who thinks there should be MORE hallmark holidays, like Step-parents Day or something. Come to think of it, a marriage surviving ten years can seem like a milestone considering the divorce rates.

After dealing with puny canister vacuums, about 15 years ago we got a used Rainbow vacuum (the one that uses water to catch the crud) and it worked out well. About 3 years ago that died, so we splurged on a Dyson (English engineering!).

Lady Spud has not been too thrilled with it lately. Two days ago I disassembled the wand and was able to poke out a smooth stone (originally found at the beach) with a diameter close to that of the hose. Hopefully her results will be better the next go-around.

[I sometimes wish we had gone with the Oreck, but oh well.]

Posted by: MarcV at July 26, 2006 10:38 AM

Whew! That was one bad-a$$ vacuum cleaner, because I did not know you even knew a word like &@S*


Good news, though, about the vases. After looking through the registry of some bright young things who have a lot of school in their immediate future, my eyes lit on a rose bowl they -- the bride, I imagine ;-) -- wanted, and that's what I sprung for. I'm delighted to have this consumer report on wedding presents ;-)

Posted by: Patricia at July 26, 2006 07:09 PM

This post was so funny, I swallowed my spit. uhm. Wait a minute. I guess I'm supposed to do that. I have been drooling for so long now, I forgot. Okay.. now that i made an ass outa myself...

I'm so glad to know that I wasn't missing anything when I didn't have a wedding shower. Not only did we not recieve any "silver" or "fill-in-the-blank-ware" We didn't even own a set of sheets when we married. Which is good, because whatever we owned would have been thoroughly peed and pooped upon by now. I have wasted many a cheap sheet because of some irreparable damage done. Ach Vel... Congrats on the new vacuum. But don't come crying to me when the darned thing breaks and you can't find a part, cause we have a Beemer (made by Bosch) sitting out front that is rusting away from lack of available parts. This was a case of Better quality biting us in the butt with expensive parts.

Posted by: Laundry Woman at July 29, 2006 05:13 PM

I'm convinced those Black and Decker mini-choppers are invincible. I've had mine for five years and even after being used on a daily basis and dropped at least once a week, it's still going strong.

Posted by: Chez at July 31, 2006 03:42 PM