Major Appliance Decision at 91
January 23, 2017
Previously posted on post-gazette.com. Written by Joan Morse Gordon.
So. Having reached the age of 91½, still reading without glasses, hearing without an aid, keeping the little gray cells nimble with Osher classes and bridge, and the “bod” a little flexible with water aerobics and Xi Gong (the knees are another matter), I ponder my future with a big question mark.
How much longer?
When I look around at my current environment, my apartment, I’m comforted with evidence and memories of my life. Furniture, accessories and artwork that I inherited and collected with warm anecdotes attached; photographs of family and friends. All to the good. And then there’s the clutter of paper and miscellanea that should be gotten rid of; that’s not so good.
Then I look at my old things: Carpets fraying, upholstery wearing thin, fading; chipping paint.
And the question arises. Is it worth the cost for the time I have left? There really is no status quo.
With these thoughts in mind, a decisive moment came during a recent visit from Ann, my loving, concerned and fiscally responsible daughter.
You know how we get to deal with our own appliances? They can be quirky, requiring a push here, a tap there. Well Ann, unaware of its intricacies, pulled open my refrigerator door … and a shelf fell off! I assured her that a softer entry would have avoided the accident. I told her that the veggie drawer also required special maneuvering and the freezer top was an unknown quantity.
Meaning well, she immediately found the make and serial numbers and called the manufacturer to order replacement parts. I demurred.
My super, Bill, who happened by at the time, confirmed that the fridge was not new when I moved in 16 years ago. That made it at least 18 years old. Ann, in the meantime, had the estimates for a few hundred dollars.
Momentarily emboldened, I took a stand. The parts would be new but it was the same old mess. It was time to bite the bullet and get a new refrigerator. Ann, dutifully, reminded me of the financial considerations. No! I’d take the plunge.
After an online search to determine style and price, I wound up at a Sears outlet and, for half price, because of a few dents on its door, I now have a new refrigerator. I’ll overlook the details of emptying the old, including the archeological dig into the depths of the freezer.
I can’t tell you how exhilarating it is. For the first time in years I know what it contains. There’s this narrow drawer that contains my cheeses. I can see them all at a glance. The bottom pullout freezer drawer makes all my frozen goods visible and accessible. And it dings a soft ding when the door is not properly closed.
So. For the moment, I can see beyond into the future.
Joan Morse Gordon (firstname.lastname@example.org) lives in Oakland. She is the author of “The Road Taken: A Journey in Time Down Pennsylvania Route 45” (Local History Co.).