Tuesday, September 21, 2004

Things fall apart

Ok, that might be a little dramatic. Still, we are witnessing simultaneous mechanical failures around here that are making things a little interesting... and causing some Deep Thoughts on the conveniences they provide.

The dishwasher broke. This is a major bummer - not least because we found it was broken by noticing it was full, putting detergent in and attempting to turn it on. Nothing happened. My pal the Internet suggested checking to see if a circuit had blown. Easy, I thought - I can fix this myself. But a circuit hadn't blown. So the appliance repair guys are coming this afternoon. We don't know how old the dishwasher is - it was here when we bought the house - but it doesn't look all that new. Hoping this doesn't mean an exciting adventure in Dishwasher Price Comparison is in the cards...

And washing dishes - a lot of dishes, because did you know how many freakin' dishes that thing can hold? - by hand has really lost its charm. In just two days I've become much more aware of how many dishes I'm using, and figured out ways to conserve.

My car stereo broke. But only halfway: Weirdly, the tape player works, but the radio does not. This means that I can't listen to NPR or (one of my many secret vices) Howard Stern in the car on the way to work. But I can listen to a cassette of Patty Larkin, which I've gotta say puts me in a much better frame of mind. Even NPR can sometimes put a damper on a girl's outlook from time to time. Given the stereo's quirky habits, I'm guessing the radio will spontaneously start working again at some point. So I think I'm going to happily put up with music-only drives for the time being.

Also broken on Sunday night was my aforementioned pal, the Internet. My wacky browser wasn't allowing me access to any secure sites, despite all sorts of fiddling with security settings and antivirus mumbojumbo. This meant that online shopping of any kind was off limits - on a day when my to-do list included the items "order shirts" and "buy shoes." So that was also annoying, but instead I went to Marshall's and Bass and picked up a few things for less than I would have paid online.

Some other random, off-topic thoughts for this morning:
  • The Clerks 10th anniversary DVD is awesome. This is likely a generational thing, but Clerks was really meaningful to me when it came out. I grew up about 10 miles from where Kevin Smith did; he's two years older than I am, and the stories he tells about the Jersey Shore and the goofballs therein are really important to me. Silly, perhaps, and most definitely profane as hell, but I love 'em nonetheless. We even watched Jersey Girl a week or so ago; it's not as bad as it was made out to be, but it's not a surprise that Smith is backing off from the slick, mass-market flick to do Clerks 2 (allegedly titled Passion of the Clerks).
  • When is Alexi Murdoch's full-length CD going to come out? I've been loving the songs from the EP - particularly "Orange Sky," which I was reminded of last night when we watched The O.C.'s crappy pre-season special. Yes, The O.C. is another (very) guilty pleasure, but I loooove it. And I'll have you know that I first heard Murdoch's stuff on World Cafe, a highbrow public radio show. So there.
  • Grilled cheese on homemade bread is really fabulous. (Apparently someone here needs some nourishment and some coffee, in that order. This post is getting kinda ridiculous.) Last night we had super-duper gourmet grilled cheese. I'd made garlic French bread in the breadmaker over the weekend, and we had some really fabulous smoked cheddar from the great bakery/market down the street, plus a huge heirloom tomato from the farm. If that's not the recipe for a perfect grilled cheese sandwich, I don't know what is. The bread turned out really well - probably one of the best loaves I've made. It was nice and light, but with no bubbles and a really fine crumb. And just a hint of garlic aroma - enough to make yesterday's PB&J at lunch just a little odd, but perfect in the dinner sandwich. And, yes, I realize that I ate like a kindergartener yesterday.