All of our major appliances, oven, cook-top, dishwasher, washer and dryer, are approaching a decade in hard service and in need of replacement. The last time we performed this ritual of domesticity, after nearly two weeks of shopping and comparing every major and minor brand name in existence my wife, with the enthusiastic assistance of a salesman working on full commission, chose the $tainless $teel whiz-bang premium brands, had them installed, and then spent the next ten years complaining what pieces of crap they were. And they are.
Within six months of purchase, the indicator decals on the control knobs of the sleek, expensive range and stove disappeared during a cleaning, settling the issue once and for all in this instance of the necessity of form over function or vice versa as these appliances, while still beautiful to the eye, now function exclusively in the realm of trial and error. The fridge drawers have parts with the fragility of DDT affected egg shells and must be opened and closed with a precision normally reserved for advanced micro surgery. The German dishwasher with the space-age lines was inexplicably designed to be loaded efficiently with anything other than dishes or silverware, all of which infuriatingly require a thorough hand washing before being run through what has essentially become a twelve hundred dollar sterilizer. Don’t even get me started on the washer and dryer. The washer door latch has ceased to work properly, and I have to wedge a large cast iron camp griddle against it and the laundry room door jamb in order for a wash cycle to complete itself without the door popping open and spilling a soaking wet load on the filthy concrete floor. It works about half the time. Two rocks and a stream bed would be less hassle.
Sigh…. Time to break out the check book and once again do my part in stimulating the major appliance sector of the economy.