Egg Fry and a Gentle Breeze

In the middle of frying up egg sandwiches last evening, the stove presented
me with a loose knob and only two settings–(red) high and off–for the one decent
sized heating coil.  The other coil is too small to cook anything much
worth eating (it’s like a Weight Watchers burner); the other side of the stovetop is a griddle thing–fashionable in
the late seventies, I guess.  It would have worked for the egg fry, but it
takes a while to heat up, and the stove didn’t go on the fritz until after I’d
made D. and Ph.’s sandwiches.  No, really, you go ahead and eat; I’ll
fume over this crappy appliance and the life-threatening popping sounds it’s making (while my egg
hardens to the faint heat of a might-be-on-might-be-off burner.  

So I pulled it apart today, figuring a knob can’t be too hard to replace,
even on an old stove.  Trouble is none of the hardware mega-stores around
here carry appliance parts and the Maytag fix-it shop doesn’t open until 8:30
Monday morning.  I had the camera out to take a pic of the wires on the
switch I was removing, you know, to pixelate my memory because I would forget
where each of the five wires should be reconnected.  Then I took a couple
more pics–the ones you see here.  

Easy Bake Nest
Temperature settings matter.

With any amount of luck, this will be my final post in a growing
series about
up the house for market.  We’ve had several inquiries, given out five tours
of thePull the chain.
house ("Aw…notice the splendid view.") No offers yet. 
Twenty-three fliers have been pulled from the box hanging next to the sign stuck
in the front yard–in two weeks.

My only planned house-fix for the day was the tug-chain switch in the house
fan.  It’s old, irregular.  Sometimes you pull on it and the fan works,
other times you pull on it, nothing.  So I cut the power, started taking
out screws.  And what I found was deeply troubling.  The insulation on
the old-a*s fan wires were all cracked, revealing bare wires.  Plus,
working on a house fan is physically demanding: my head was crookt into a tight
space, the Sahara winds were drifting down from the attic space, the lighting
was poor, my step ladder was quivering. The electrical line from the house was
fine–that much was a relief.  So I chopped the power supply to the fan, grabbed some 18 gauge extensions, wrapped-spliced-routed, patched in
the cycle switch, and affirmed my faith that miracles happen.  It works.
From pure misery to pure joy, just like that.  Now, no more pictures or
blog entries about home repair.  Promise.


  1. The pics remind me of those an insurance adjuster would include in a report explaining “the cause of loss” on an insurance claim.

    Don’t some claims get denied due to improper maintenance being the cause of loss?


    PS How’s the roof holding up?

  2. Something smells like smoke. So you’re saying I should delete them because they incriminate me as a tamperer? I fixed the temp gauge on the stove today; it cost 36 bucks for the part.

    The roof is…well, let’s just say we’re under the cover of tornado warnings until 10 p.m., and I have two house-showings scheduled this evening. The trick will be to get the buyer to sign a contract before the roof tears off. So, if it’s wind; no problem. If it’s fire, I’ve already got the origin report graphed for the ins. co. Stick to the all risks, all perils plan, Dad. Except for Earth movement, it’ll restore your investment in a place to call home. Oh, and backups. Those are a sh*tty deal, too.

    Since I’ve promised _not_ to blog on house repairs any longer, I should rustle out some of those old claims photos. Best advice: Never tell the insured it’s denied while you are on the roof. Seems like Tim had stories about that when he was working from the Upper Peninsula.

  3. That reminds me, I need to call him.

    Maybe he’s got some similar stories as an attorney, ya think?

  4. I haven’t talked to him since he became a full blown lawyer. Law degrees? Uppity types? Don’t even know what sort of law he’s practicing. So if you call him, tell him your brother says he’s become The Man…and that’s no good.

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