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2020-08-01 | Journal | A Tale of Dishwashers: A Decade of Musty Water

Two days ago, Sean pointed out that the dishwasher wasn't working. I pushed the cancel button, and I could hear the motor trying to drain the water and then stop. There was something familiar about the way it sounded, but I couldn't place it. This was dishwasher #2. Dishwasher #1 was only a couple years old when Yvette and I bought the house in 2007. I continued to fiddle with #2's buttons: start, cancel, bzzzt, click, start, cancel, bzzzzz, click. I started to get a form of muscle memory and flashback of something horrible, a crushing anxiety draped over me, making me want to hunch over and protect myself. It was late. I gave up on fixing it for the night. Sean and I went to bed, leaving a brownish-orange colored water in the bottom that smelled like dirty dishes soup.

Sean didn't sleep well that night, as the dishwasher heater kept activating. She opened the door so it wouldn't keep cycling. The next morning, I got up to make coffee for myself and Sean. I usually make instant coffee for us, but Bobo was up, and wanted to make coffee in the french press. I helped him find it. It was under a pile of dishes in the sink. It is fragile, and one breaks every six months or so. I have a back-stock of replacements in the closet. I couldn't find clean cups to make coffee in. I tried to find the stopper for the garbage disposal so I could fill the sink and wash dishes, but I couldn't find it. I clogged the sink with a bag and washed some cups, but the dishes were piling up fast, as Bobo brought in his nightly stash from his room. The household needs clean dishes and coffee, certainly. The household was broken. It was unraveling.

I tried to drain the dishwasher again, hoping that the restful orange soup had loosed up something. I could hear the motor struggling and then stopping. It acted like the washer pump was broken as well, because the start cycle didn't work. I realized it was probably just because the dishwasher was full of water already. This all seemed so familiar, but I couldn't remember exactly when I had been through this before. Had I fixed this for #2 or #1?

I concluded that there was something wrong with the drain pump. I started to disassemble the dishwasher, but the counter was covered with dishes and grime. I couldn't find the usual spray bottle that I use to clean with. It has this human-safe soap that works well and smells like lavender. It sounds a bit silly, but I really like it, and it is much better than regular soap and water because it wipes up without leaving much soap behind. The feeling of things getting out of control continued to build. To make matters worse, I shared my grumpiness with Sean, complaining that I couldn't find anything and the french press was under a pile of dishes, and I blamed her for it. That did not go over well. The day was going downhill quickly.

Dishwasher #2 doesn't have an accessible filter. It has never really cleaned the dishes well, at least in recent memory. The dishes almost always have a musty smell. I have developed some voodoo procedures over the years to compensate. The best combination of buttons included "power wash", "heated dry", and "auto sense". I marked the correct button combination on #2 in black sharpie, so that it was easy to remember the correct settings. No tall cups could go on the top shelf; even 14 oz glasses were off limits. With these rules, the dishes came out OK, but not great. For as long as I can remember, I have smelled something off on the dishes. I figured it was because the dishes sat in the dishwasher for awhile with the door closed.

Because there is no accessible filter, every six months or so I have had to take #2 apart to clean the large bits of bone, glass, and plastic that clog up the water grate. It is a long process, as I have to remove both racks, the upper and lower spray arms, the power wash back-plate, the connection tubing, and disassemble the filter assembly. It takes about an hour, and each time I think that I can only do this so many times before the plastic holes start to strip out from repeatedly securing the water tubes to the back of the washer.

Considering the general inability of #2 to fulfill its primary purpose well, and the added problem of no easily removable filter, I decided to purchase a new dishwasher. It was surprisingly difficult to find any place that had them in stock. I found one place, a hardware store, and they had one in stock, so I ordered it online. Six hours later, I still had not heard back. I figured it would be easy. How long can it take to pull the stock from the back and put a receipt on it? I found out later that the same place said it could take 3-7 days. I tried to call multiple times, but no answer. I decided to cancel the order, figuring I would take another run at fixing it, because the best I could find was a shipped dishwasher that wouldn't arrive until next week.

After work, I pulled the dishwasher from the cabinet. I'm not particularly proud about the execution, here, but this is how things unfolded. I tried to hold the drain hose up, and attempted to drain properly, but during this, I got all excited about seeing if the drain pump was working when it was exposed, and so I tilted #2 on its side to look. Water rushed out. I mopped up spilled musty water from the floor of the kitchen with bath towels from the laundry, forgetting that I often pull bath towels from the laundry to clean the bathroom. I had ten or so sopping wet bath towels, and even at that, I didn't get all of the water mopped up. I had to use some paper towels. A mop is too slow to mop up water when it is flowing out onto the hardwood floors.

I dragged #2 out onto the patio, where I hosed out the internal passageways and grates. I filled up the bottom with water, and it seemed like the pump worked. It spit out water. I poked a piece of cardboard into the bottom of the pump, and the impeller slapped against it, brrrrrrrr. I was excited, figuring it worked. This seemed familiar too. I had done this at another time, taken the dishwasher apart to look at the pump. I still couldn't remember if it was #2 or #1, though.

I dragged #2 back into the house and hooked it up, bragging to Sean that I think I had it fixed, but I still needed to test it. I hooked up the water, power, and drain hose, and while it did sound better, it still wouldn't drain properly. I picked up the drain hose and tried to blow through it to see if it was clogged, and I was able to blow some air through, so I figured the drain hose was fine. Sean came into the kitchen and told me that I should just face the fact that the dishwasher was dead, and it wasn't coming back. I reluctantly agreed, disconnected it, created another minor flood from my test water, and put the dishwasher on the back patio. I was covered in sweat and organic sludge from crawling around under the sink, disconnecting and reconnecting hoses, and sloshing musty brown-orange water around. Sean helped mop while I put away my tools and parts that were spread around the floor and counter.

I pulled out some paper plates, cups, and plastic forks. We were in it for the long haul. The kitchen, now, had mounds of dishes. One mound had a rack of dishes from the dishwasher on top of it, the failed load from the orange water. The dining room table had the other rack, also full of dishes. Sean and I went to sleep. I woke up early yesterday morning, and hunted around for a dishwasher online. I didn't really want to wait for another week. I wanted to pick one up. When did not having a dishwasher become such a big deal? In the past, I often didn't have a dishwasher, and would wash the dishes by hand; however, the flow of dishes seems difficult to deal with now. It seems like a required first world accessory. I could get all mud-hut later. For now, I needed to find a working dishwasher. I ended up finding one, the last dishwasher at Fry's, and ordered it online. Fry's said they would send me confirmation I could pick it up within an hour after they opened.

Later that morning I got an email from my bank, asking if I could confirm a transaction for Fry's. I noticed that they said that the transaction was denied. I confirmed that it was valid, but since it said it was denied, I called Fry's. I waited on hold, got transferred, but eventually I got a hold of the person who had tried to process the transaction. Sure enough, my bank had outright denied it. I told him that I had confirmed the transaction, so it should be good now. He was doubtful, but he ran it through again. He was noticeably happy on the phone, surprised that it worked. I got another email from my bank asking me to confirm the transaction again, but this time they said they approved it, but would lock my card if I didn't confirm the transaction. I let my work know that I would be taking a long lunch, and drove to Fry's mid-day.

Because of c~19, they can only allow 25% capacity, so the store had almost nobody there, because people didn't want to stand outside to wait. I only saw four customers in the entire store, and they were a group of four men purchasing something. I stood near the entrance at the pick-up counter, holding my paper like a big ticket. Eventually one of the clerks in the check-out line came over partway, asked me if I was there to pick up, and said I needed to come over to the main check-out. Fry's is quite big, and these distances are significant. It is probably a good 100 feet from the entrance to where the open registers were. When the store is full, it all seems reasonable, but it is quite weird when the store is empty.

I finished up the transaction, and the clerk asked me if I wanted help out. For the first time in my life, I said yes. Usually I just grab a cart and hoist it into the truck, but this time I was a bit wiser about it, partly because Sean is encouraging me to stop my solo ways on these things, and partly because I can feel the stress on my body more these days. I held #3 down with a strap:

It turns out that the sound-proofing on the back isn't held down well, just by some kitchen string wrapped around some small metal studs. I watched it flap more and more in my rear-view mirror on the way home. I also should have done a better job of holding it down, because a mile from my house it started sliding around. I got it home safe, though. Bobo helped me up the steps to the house and into the kitchen, also a first. He is strong, now, and able to help.

I started hooking up #3, and realized that the drain hose was long enough to reach the side of the garbage disposal without an extension. I pulled the end of the old hose off, and looked down and saw it was clogged with all kinds of sludge and this white gristly bulge at the end. Apparently my test by blowing into the other end of the hose was not valid. I hooked up #3 and started a load of dishes. All was starting to come into place.

I looked at #2 on the patio, and it started to make sense. I think I had fixed #2 once by taking it apart and attaching it, but instead of really fixing it, the operation just loosed up enough of the sludge to get things moving again. At the same time, though, I had a vague memory of #1 having a similar problem. Had I purchased #2 in error? Then, I looked at the back of #2:

Oh! That date. I must have replaced #1 in 2010. All of the feelings made sense, now, the feeling of everything crushing me as my world unraveled. 2010 was not a good year at all. Not quite as bad as 2009, but not a good year. I figure that #2 is actually working, it was just a clogged. It might also be that #1 worked as well. On the off chance that #3 kicks the bucket early, I figured I'd wrap #2 in plastic and stick it in back of the workshop, next to the fence. Orange tape seems appropriate:

Today I ran 4 loads of dishes. The kitchen is almost back to normal as I write this. I still have to cut out the side of the wall to properly mount the dishwasher so it doesn't tilt, and level it, but that should be relatively easy.

Comments:

2020-08-01 :

I sat down to write the tale, and realized that the images for my journal were often over 5 megs in size. It used to be that the pictures on your camera were reasonable for web, as they were low-resolution. Nowadays, though, the size is relatively big. I went off on a bit of a tangent as I figured out how to resize all of the existing images on MHC. One challenge is that I don't want to shrink images that are already small. The results are here. I also did a search for when, exactly, I bought dishwasher #2. All-in-all, it took me two hours after I first sat down to write, before I started writing the actual tale.

2020-08-01 :

It is enjoyable to write a real entry today. I suppose that all entries are real, but journal entries are a bit rarer, particularly the longer ones. Usuallly subject entries fall into urgent ramblings about collapse of industrial civilization and the horrors, and have most of my focus. Sure, there are exceptions, but mostly socio-political-ecological stuff has overwhelmed my journal since 2012. Usually I'll post the rant on social media and then pull it over into my journal. I think a large part of this is the mistaken idea that I can make people understand with enough words, enough writing, so I continue on with the subject entries. There is a problem of audience with that. Who am I writing for?

On the tech side, at my job, most people don't get what I'm saying. There are roughly five people that understand the idea of knowledge domains and data flow in an org, that I know personally. There are zero people that are interested enough to follow along and run some Python to generate the models. More and more, as time goes on, I'm getting better at letting this go. There are some wins. My current boss is a fan of the CB ideas, so he is starting to evangelize a bit around architecture, generally. He doesn't completely understand the domain or AI stuff, but he likes the combination of visualization and documentation. It is getting to be a wider and wider divide as I bring in religion. I have an odd mix.

Even with current events, I have troubles. The prevailing approach to political discussion is somewhat binary: "Don't you know? There are clear ways to look at current events!!!" Whenever I try and engage on one of these conversations, I quickly become alienated and alienating. Backing most of my beliefs around the current issues, is an overall analysis and understanding of the global supply chain and how it relates to population and ecological destruction. While I can see some of my ideas intersecting the beliefs of some people I know, similar to my work ideas, there are few people that fully follow the flow of thought, likely because it ends up being fairly futile. Even those I have been supposedly having intellectual discussions with about the issues, when I get a bit deeper with them, I realize that my main core ideas are something they have not really understood fully. All are just correlations with keywords of agreements, a form of confirmation bias.

I do share pretty much everything on the web. That is a change for me in the last couple years. I used to segment most of my personal stuff, and it rarely stayed posted for longer than a few months without a password. The web provides an outlet for my ideas. David S is probably closest, actually... so not entirely alone there, I guess, but he is a bit remote right now, not sure why. Sean is one of the most flexible and broadest thinkers I know. She has followed along, challenged, and made me think, but it is a bit different with her, because we are lovers, so we share everything. I do cherish her mind, certainly. And I have back and forth conversations via email with some people as well, that I value. Overall, though, I feel fairly isolated as far as the application and growth of the ideas. It is getting to be a wider and wider divide as I bring in religion. I have an odd mix.

The thing that is the most difficult is attempting to share what is beautiful to me. As I was writing this morning, looking at all of the particular bits of design that went in to my current journal software, I realized that as fabulous, as perfect as the current UI is to me, it is unlikely that I will ever know anybody that will run this particular bit of 400 lines of Python to create an entry in a journal. I find it so odd to have spent thousands upon thousands of hours on refining my journal software, yet not knowing anybody that runs it. This is consistent with almost everything I do now. To be fair, I wouldn't wish the current version of software on anybody except for a GNU/Linux geek. I'm replicating the entries two-way with Unison, so I can write anywhere at anytime. It is all open source. Perhaps somebody sometime will use some of it. It is mine. I love the way it looks: :

All of this has caused a bit of my back and forth with social media, as I realize again and again, that real engagement on any of my ideas is rare. Few people really looked at my social media profile while I was on there. I get frustrated, and swear off social media altogether. Social media is really about attention, not knowledge. I am supposed to post something personal that adds to attention, part of the stream. This isn't so much about a face page anymore, a place with details and status on a person. Sure, that is one application, but for most people, it is just a stream, a feed vying for attention. In the very beginning, as I understand, a face book wall was something that showed when other people tagged you in events or they wrote on your wall directly. Now it has become a way to lobby for an identity.

yvette c~19 sean bobo

Articles tagged with yvette on Aggie Codrust:

2020-01-19: Two Trips
2019-11-27: Source of Anger

Articles tagged with yvette on O.R.N.G.:

2019-07-20: Bricklan
2019-04-22: Four People
2019-04-10: Floppy
2019-02-14: Fish Sticks
2018-11-10: Interim Sun
2018-10-20: What is O.R.N.G.?
2018-07-27: Toy Rambler
2018-07-21: Gathering Journal Items
2018-07-19: Bob and Connie
2018-07-10: Incredibles
2018-06-30: Basement Punish
2017-12-23: Orion
2017-12-20: Chili
2017-11-29: so_what
2017-11-14: cycles_of_trees
2017-09-08: With or Without Me
2017-08-12: Walking, House, Chairs
2017-01-14: The Mud That Caused Thy Fall
2016-12-24: Early Pies
2016-12-03: Happy in Her Outfit
2016-11-24: Back of the Train
2015-06-25: Honey Badger Cat
2015-03-18: hand-in-hand
2014-12-19: White Album Letter to Sean
2014-12-17: Back and Forth Emails
2014-11-12: medusa
2014-10-30: Back in
2014-10-29: sculpture fire
2014-10-25: What Bobo Read at Funeral
2014-10-24: Horse and Crow
2014-10-20: yugurt ramp
2014-10-12: cat time
2014-10-11: Yvette's Memorial
2014-10-06: Yvette, Bobo, and Memorial
2014-10-06: Wash of love and asdf
2014-09-22: Divine Web
2014-09-22: Who To Write To
2014-09-20: No More Treatments
2014-09-18: Ramp
2014-08-22: pancreas
2014-07-30: Not as strong
2014-03-30: Bobo Hug
2013-05-06: Time Flash
2013-05-04: Throwing Good Money After Bad
2013-04-21: Red Tiny House
2013-03-16: Wrong Eric
2013-02-05: NT 4 Boot and Good Times
2012-11-21: The Hostess Entries
2012-09-24: Vacation and Crying
2012-07-08: Amputation
2012-06-07: quantum entanglement
2012-06-07: Missed Birthday
2012-06-05: Yellow Lung Fluid
2012-06-03: Guard Rails and Perm Field Techs
2012-06-01: My own filth
2012-05-23: Dawn
2012-03-23: Found RedNotebook
2012-03-22: No Compromise
2012-02-12: His Great Coat
2012-01-15: Colored Seaweed
2012-01-05: Bus Doesn't Pick Up There
2011-08-31: White Rabbit
2011-08-28: Lost in Charlie's Clothes
2011-03-01: 2nd day of work at New Job
2010-12-04: Ice Ship
2010-10-26: My Corner
2010-10-12: Anniversary Truck Colors
2010-10-04: Rhett Bourbon
2010-10-03: Sigg Doorways
2010-10-02: Crow Flying and Yellow Truck
2010-08-30: Seemann
2010-08-30: Bobo Nightmares and Sleepovers
2010-08-28: Five Easy Pieces (at last)
2010-08-21: Marmaduke
2010-08-12: Whistlestar
2010-08-07: The War of Art : Not Like
2010-08-06: Id Climb
2010-07-09: Easy Breath
2010-07-02: I told you so!
2010-06-08: Sharp Grey Rocks
2010-05-26: A Song and a Movie
2010-05-22: MCJ, NoNIC, etc.
2010-05-21: Attack
2010-05-20: Good Day
2010-04-30: Stirring Sugar
2010-04-29: A Normal Day
2010-04-28: Yvette's Health and Internal Landscapes
2010-03-31: Doing Much Better Scott
2010-03-18: Goth Woman Advice
2010-03-17: Carved Scorecard and Hotdogs
2010-03-08: Trout Sauce
2010-02-27: New Internal Landscapes
2010-01-25: The Terminator Kitty is Not your Friend
2010-01-01: Beans
2009-12-06: Forest Fires
2009-11-21: Nerd Fantastic Sacred
2009-10-10: Yellow Truck
2009-10-07: Small Rental With Heat Lamp
2009-09-28: Top of the Church
2009-09-27: Tarp Walls
2009-09-11: A New Dryer Timer - Part 1
2009-09-02: Green Carpet with No Molding
2009-08-30: Death Machine
2009-08-24: Dock Boats and Go-Live
2009-08-12: Taos Houses
2009-08-04: Eye to Eye
2009-07-31: Bobo Nightmares and Peaceful Visions
2009-06-28: An Innocent Computer Move - Sunday
2009-06-27: An Innocent Computer Move - Saturday
2009-06-26: An Innocent Computer Move - Friday
2009-04-19: Completing the Call Dream
2009-01-02: Shepherd's Pie
2008-11-23: Rustc Credentials Dream
2008-08-09: Old House and Fire Pit Dream
2008-05-31: MCJ Road Trip
2008-05-28: Mountain Climbing Metaphor - May Revisit
2008-02-12: Dead Rabbit Vision
2007-09-13: Goodbye Romeo
2007-05-16: Nana's Funeral
2006-12-31: Shed Cleanup
2006-08-16: Tuna Fish Sandwich with Nana
2006-03-28: Car Pit Dream
2005-09-15: Cowboy Coffee
2004-07-31: Purchasing Our Rambler
2002-08-09: 8048 Puzzle Box
1995-01-01: The Number 9 Period: 1995-2000
1994-12-15: Laundro Mat on Cherry
1994-02-14: Crowley's Confessions
1993-02-14: Plans for Life After Graduation/Property
1993-02-13: Barney Problems
1993-02-01: Information Underground
1993-02-01: Mesa, Mountain, Clearing
1992-11-30: Port and Divine
1992-11-13: Solar Quest
1992-11-08: Math Analysis
1992-08-04: Purchasing Barney
1992-06-20: Hot Dusty Dirt
1992-05-15: The Reuben Sandwich Period: 1992-1994
1991-01-15: Siouxsie Vid
1991-01-14: Marc Unloading Truck
1990-12-13: Strawberry Pig Dream
1990-01-19: Interview with writer Yvette Demetz, January, 1990
1987-10-11: The Spiegel Catalog
1987-03-14: 55 GMC With Butterfly Wings
1986-11-20: Moped Rides to the French Quarter
1986-10-10: First Night Yvette
1986-10-03: Had it in the Ear Before
1986-07-01: Honda CB200 Twin: Adventures in Plumbing
1986-06-06: Give a Man a Coat
1986-05-30: The Hawg Burger Period: 1986-1992

Articles tagged with sean on Aggie Codrust:

2019-11-27: Source of Anger
2019-10-30: Outside Bathroom
2019-10-03: Standing in the Way of Control
2019-09-20: Seattle at last

Articles tagged with sean on O.R.N.G.:

2019-02-19: Who'll Stop the Rain?
2019-02-14: Fish Sticks
2018-11-10: Interim Sun
2018-10-20: What is O.R.N.G.?
2018-10-13: Where Do We Stop?
2018-09-18: Mr. Lucky's
2018-07-21: Gathering Journal Items
2018-06-30: Basement Punish
2018-06-21: Cookie Crush
2018-06-16: Outraged Southern Grandma
2018-06-15: Best Two Beers
2018-06-09: Red Rope
2018-06-02: Kantors
2018-06-02: Two Layers Down
2018-05-12: Knee Bubble
2018-03-03: Her Smile
2017-11-19: face_words
2017-11-09: dragon_and_rose
2017-07-16: Knight and Maiden
2017-05-28: Interesting
2017-05-24: Luscious
2017-02-22: ignition switch
2016-02-28: three legged goat
2016-02-04: Sean's Dad's Grave
2015-08-06: Boxes of Beads
2015-07-23: Dental Gulag
2015-04-06: Big Ford and Torn Fences
2015-03-19: Sean's Arms
2015-03-18: hand-in-hand
2014-12-19: White Album Letter to Sean
2014-12-17: Back and Forth Emails
2009-10-19: Yay Pick Sweep!
1980-10-31: Musical Chairs
1979-10-13: The Beatles and the Annex

Articles tagged with bobo on Aggie Codrust:

2020-03-02: Bene Gesserit
2019-12-30: Attorney
2019-11-27: Source of Anger
2019-10-19: Leaving Las Vegas and Song
2019-09-09: Elton John Again

Articles tagged with bobo on O.R.N.G.:

2019-05-19: Bobo and Coffee
2019-04-12: Bobo Alum
2019-02-14: Fish Sticks
2018-12-10: Bobo Pies
2018-10-20: What is O.R.N.G.?
2018-07-27: Toy Rambler
2018-06-24: DataOps
2018-06-21: Cookie Crush
2018-06-16: Outraged Southern Grandma
2018-06-15: Best Two Beers
2017-09-09: Own Mind
2017-06-17: Magic
2017-06-05: No Man's Land
2017-03-08: Turtle Soup
2017-01-24: slow dance
2017-01-08: card tournament
2015-10-16: Thanks, I guess
2015-09-27: Diamond Hoe
2015-05-20: I feel happy
2015-05-19: Wild Horses
2014-12-04: Bobo's Dream Loch Ness
2014-10-25: What Bobo Read at Funeral
2014-03-30: Bobo Hug
2013-03-13: Rebuilding Grandpa's Chainsaw - Revisit
2012-09-24: Vacation and Crying
2012-03-22: No Compromise
2011-11-01: Rebuilding Grandpa's Chainsaw - Part 4
2011-10-31: Rebuilding Grandpa's Chainsaw - Part 3
2011-10-30: Rebuilding Grandpa's Chainsaw - Part 2
2011-10-29: Rebuilding Grandpa's Chainsaw - Part 1
2011-08-01: Out and In Burger
2010-08-30: Bobo Nightmares and Sleepovers
2010-08-30: Imagining Without Wine
2010-03-17: Carved Scorecard and Hotdogs
2010-03-08: Trout Sauce
2010-03-02: Time and Climbing
2010-01-25: The Terminator Kitty is Not your Friend
2009-09-22: Google That for Me
2009-09-21: Three Minds and IT Rootball
2009-09-18: Steep Mountain
2009-07-31: Bobo Nightmares and Peaceful Visions
2009-07-31: Hands and Lemon Sun
2009-03-16: Creature Create
2009-01-02: Shepherd's Pie
2008-08-09: Old House and Fire Pit Dream
2008-05-31: MCJ Road Trip
2008-04-22: Hot Rods, Earth Day, Nash Ramblers, and Timothy Leary
2008-04-04: Bobo's TV Device
2007-03-06: Bobo Dream Safeway and Robots
2006-12-31: Shed Cleanup
2006-04-20: No more school for Bobo
2006-04-13: The Cost of Eating Pandas
2006-04-06: Bobo's First day of School
2006-03-28: Car Pit Dream
2006-03-25: Big Boy Bed Lessons
2006-03-05: Engine All Installed
2006-02-17: Ugliest Dinner Ever!
2006-02-08: Cabbage and Pork
2006-01-19: Goldfish Diversion
2006-01-16: Whole Wheat Kids Cookies
2005-11-16: Tofu and Hamburger Meatloaf
2005-09-15: Cowboy Coffee
2005-09-05: Project Gutenberg - Surprising Stories
1996-03-27: Jumanji