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Dead Fridge Walking Part 3 – All hail Lazarus

Welcome back to the Dead Fridge Walking trilogy, otherwise known as the autumn when I simultaneously considered committing suicide and murder. You might want to consult Part One and Part Two to get up to speed on the matter, or maybe just to share my pain.

So two weeks go by. Our clueless repairman and his trusty electric drill/screwdriver comes back. This time he has the last piece of hardware he thinks could fix our problems and make our life a vortex of sunshine and rainbows. He gets to work changing this circuit board in the back of the fridge. Would you be terribly surprised if I told you it still wasn’t working?

“I’ll be really honest with you, sir,” he starts. “I’ve reached the limit of my knowledge. My recommendation to you is to call SmitchenAid and request a new technician.”

He reached the limit of his knowledge??? Understatement of the century, buddy!

So we contact SmitchenAid the next morning — because they need to have received his paperwork from the service call before proceeding. But of course they still haven’t received anything from our clueless repairman and his trusty electric drill/screwdriver. It takes another couple of days of back-and-forth for the paperwork to come out clean. By Friday, they tell us a new company will come over soon.

On Monday, basically a week after the last guy’s visit, they send a new guy from another company. As soon as he walks through the door it’s obvious he already is more knowledgable than our jolly old fat guy. This is easily detectable, if nothing else, by the fact that he has more than one tool in his hands. We shoot the breeze a little, explain how the fridge has been acting up. In the process, we tell him everything that our clueless repairman and his trusty electric drill/screwdriver has done up to this point.

This new repairman, Daniel, he’s just floored. He can’t believe how unprofessional the guy was. He asks what company he works for and when we tell him he confirms that there are stories going around involving this guy. Apparently, he’s fond of dirty stories in inappropriate settings while botching repair jobs. At this point, if I’d at least heard one of these dirty stories I might have felt as if I’d come out ahead. But no dice.

So Daniel gets to work. He pulls out his toolbox (toolbox!!!) and goes about checking the entire electrical system. He’s looking for voltage levels, faulty connections. Right off the bat I feel a smidge more confident in his skills.

Then, he replaces one of the circuit boards our previous dude had changed. The thing was, this part couldn’t just be replaced; it needs to be reprogrammed as well. So he gets on it. All in all, he spent almost three hours at my place trying to find the root of the problem. Remember, my fridge is freezing where it shouldn’t freeze and the water/ice dispenser isn’t working.

In the end, he just can’t find what the deal is. He however promises to spend the night asking around, determined to fix this thing once and for all. At this point, Daniel is just as interested in the puzzle aspect as he is in making us refrigeratingly happy.

The next day, we get a call from Daniel’s colleague at his company. He’ll be at my place in the afternoon. He’s a short Frenchman, kind of young but balding. He also shows up with his tools. I never thought I’d ever get a hard-on from looking at tools. [Insert your own gay joke here]

We have to start from the beginning explaining our problems which go back to the glorious days of late August. He had spoken with Daniel before and had pondered the situation overnight but being here was like starting all over again. Then he had an idea. To him, it sounded like the fridge was stuck in “showroom mode”.

So for the next 30 minutes he went about fiddling with the nifty control panel. Have I told you how nifty it is? You can put up pictures of your favorite Playmates, you can get a metric system conversion table, you can program the water dispenser to pour out predetermined quantities of water. Nifty as fuck. So he plays with the buttons like it’s a Nintendo for half an hour. In the end? Nothing changes.

What the H E double hockey sticks?!?

Still baffled, the new repairman dug into his knowledge base, made some mental calculations that had to include quadratic equations and quantum physics. You could literally see the gears moving inside his brain. He opened the fridge door and instead of focusing on electronics and circuit boards, he took a closer look at the mechanical parts. He removed the integrated ice bucket.

You should’ve seen his eyes light up!

He discovered that a half-inch plastic flap wasn’t in the appropriate position. This obstructed the optical sensor monitoring the amount of ice in the bucket. Because of this, the system locked down the water and ice dispenser and made the thermostat go haywire trying to compensate for the loss of temperature it thought had occurred.

He fixed the problem and two seconds later water was flowing again. Very long story short, my fridge is now up and running! All hail Lazarus 🙂

I may have rebuked SmitchenAid a little too harshly, I’m afraid. Their only fault, aside from allowing some lazy nerd to engineer a plastic flap easily displaced, was to send us a subcontracting repairman who didn’t have two brain cells to rub together. When they did send us competent people, the problem actually got fixed.

So, this time without any sarcasm whatsoever: Thank you, SmitchenAid!


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