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Sunday, June 16, 2024

Real Life – Just Ask


Home equipment malfunctions have tried my patience lately, but in the “tell me some good news” department, it’s also presented a creative opportunity to think outside the box.

For example, our one-year-old kitchen faucet commenced spraying water wildly whenever it was turned on. It could have been infuriating! A faucet repair seemed in the DIY realm, however, so I kept trying to fix it, with mixed results.

But when our complex furnace also started acting up — powered by natural gas, with a flame, fan, and boiler — there were not enough YouTube videos on the planet to induce me to tackle that job!

The upside of owning a tricky furnace is one develops a convivial relationship not only with the company dispatcher, but with the repair technician as well.

Based on that connection, when the technician came up from the basement, I felt 80% comfortable asking for advice on fixing the faucet, too. Luckily he took my request seriously, and in about two seconds the problem was solved. 

I felt sheepish about my plumbing ineptitude, but I also learned something. 

Reinforced by this experience, when the painter arrived to power-wash our house the other day, I unabashedly inquired whether he might mind dislodging a broken branch that was dangling 30 feet above us. 

He expansively described the array of equipment he carried on his truck, and graciously consented to execute this off-label maneuver, and seemed quite pleased to assist.

Less humorous was this week’s challenge: the demise of the microwave, which by the smell of things was threatening to catch fire. 

I called the manufacturer, and after a very long time, reached an actual human employee, albeit in the wrong department. Since these sagas seem ordinary these days, we had a good laugh.

She helped me anyway.

Awash in newscasts highlighting conflict, harmony is also possible.

Need help?

It doesn’t hurt to ask. (c)

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Patti Koltes
Patti Koltes
Real Life © by Patti Koltes. Contact her at pkoltes@gmail.com.