The refrigerator died.
When we bought it in 2005, the guys at COOL IT (I know, great name for a fridge/freezer store, right?) said it was a “renter’s refrigerator.”
We were renters. We needed a refrigerator. Seemed like fate was smiling upon us, so we bought it.
It was more like bad karma laughing its ass off.
We went to bed that night secure in the knowledge that we would no longer be living on take-out food, since COOL IT would deliver our fridge the next day.
The following morning dawned with sunshine and birdcroak (they don’t sing in Arizona—way too hot). Stij and I lingered over our coffees and planned what to shop for after the fridge was installed and running.
“Gee, it’s already ten o’clock,” Stij said, glancing at his watch. “Didn’t they say they’d be here by eight?”
“Oh, it is that late already? Yeah, they did. Want me to call them?”
“Yep. I’ve got to get to work. I’m glazing doors and drawer fronts for Nowlin’s kitchen today, and I’ll need to set up in the driveway.”
I spoke to an associate.
I hung up.
“I don’t know—he said they delivered it at six this morning. So I asked him to read me the delivery address and he had the right one.”
“Oh, don’t tell me…”
We dashed to the door and opened it to find the fridge, standing like a sentry, at the end of the driveway.
“Honey, remember your blood pressure…”
“I’m remembering it, and you will too, when blood started shooting out my eyes, which is going to happen any minute now! Phone, please.”
I handed it to him and closed the door behind him to allow privacy while he screamed at the associate.
The transaction was beginning to remind me of my Office Max farrago (see archived Weekly Rants). I walked to the end of the driveway to check for damage on our ‘new to us’ appliance. The crazy way it was tilting made me fear that it had been a drive-by delivery, having been edged off the truck as it slowed to 10 mph.
But no, they had just left it leaning precariously on the edge of the curb…and the street facing side was now covered with spray-painted graffiti. All my life, I’ve wanted a refrigerator that says, ‘FOCK YOU’ in rainbow colors, and now it was mine.
I should mention here that we don’t live in a great neighborhood…or an educated one, for that matter.
Stij returned from his eruption with a little magma still dribbling from the corners of his mouth.
“Should I ask how it went?”
“They are coming here now to pick it up. They are bringing a refund check with them.”
“They were foolhardy enough to tell me that they only deliver and do not install—something they failed to mention when we bought it.”
“Uh, there’s been a further development,” I said.
I took his hand, which was already beginning to clench, and showed him.
He was surprisingly calm.
This is always a bad sign. This happens just before the top of his head shoots off and goes into orbit around Mars.
At that moment, in a absolute miracle of bad timing, the truck from COOL IT arrived.
They disembarked, took one look at the fridge and said, “What the hell did you do this for? It’s defaced. We can’t take it back now. ”
I just shook my head and stepped out of the way…two streets out of the way.
By the time the dust settled, the fridge was loaded and Stij had his check in hand, with the promise of a replacement fridge to be delivered and installed the following day, COD. We watched the truck lumber off down the street.
“I was too far away to hear clearly—how did you get them to take it back with all that spray-paint on it?”
“While we were arguing, their truck got a dose of what the fridge did—watch when it turns the corner.”
Well, at least with the fridge as evidence, the ‘UP YER’S’ painted in eight-foot rainbow-colored letters will be easier to explain.