Archive for the ‘Mishaps’ Category

Fridge Alarm

In our travels, we usually get hotel rooms with a mini refrigerator. A recent hotel room had a problem though. Here’s a photo of the arrangement:

image of mini refrigerator setup in hotel room

See the problem?

Here’s a shot of the thing on the wall, in case you need a little help:

image of mini refrigerator setup in hotel room

If you still need help, here’s a picture of the fridge with the door open:

image of mini refrigerator setup in hotel room

We were loading the fridge with stuff just after we arrived to the room. We heard beeping and figured it was the fridge letting us know the door was open too long. We have that feature on our full-size fridge at home, but weren’t expecting it on a mini-fridge.

So my wife shut the door for a second, then opened it again and the beeping resumed. She quickly realized it wasn’t the fridge. Rather, it was the carbon monoxide alarm. It is arranged such that the test button (that sounds the alarm) is pressed whenever the fridge door is opened wide.

Bad setup.

Of course, we left it that way for the next guests to discover.

Blow the horn in Gibeah, The trumpet in Ramah. Sound an alarm at Beth-aven: “Behind you, Benjamin!”

Hosea 5:8

Wrenching Tips

If you’re going to be doing anything significant with a socket set anytime soon, here is a tip for you:

All ratchets become torque wrenches at some point.

It’s just not calibrated.

In fact, one of my sockets – the actual socket, not the ratchet – broke while I was trying to remove one of the Buick’s calipers. The bolt wasn’t budging, so I tried the breaker bar and with much exertion, the bolt started to move. Or so I thought. The movement was that socket rotating because it was now larger than the bolt. The bolt, of course, was stubbornly not rotating.

And I had two other ratchets give up on me when I pushed them too hard. When the ratchet makes clicking noises in both directions, you have problems.

So now if you are going to deal kindly and truly with my master, tell me; and if not, let me know, that I may turn to the right hand or the left.

Genesis 24:49

Coil Problem

The worst part of a Slinky is when it gets twisted together. Once the coils get intertwined, I would much rather throw it away than try to get it untwisted. And in the rare case when it does come unstuck, the Slinky is never the same. There’s always a noticeable gap where the metal got bent and can never be put back to its original shape.

So you can imagine my disappointment when I ordered two coil springs for my Jeep and opened the box to find this:

image of coil springs stuck together

I was glad that it wasn’t as bad as it looked. Just a slight tug and they came apart.

and two chains of pure gold; you shall make them of twisted cordage work, and you shall put the corded chains on the filigree settings.

Exodus 28:14

Questionable Logo

There’s a company logo based on the Titanic. They won’t admit it, of course, but I found the connection.

First off, the Titanic:

image of the RMS Titanic sailing peacefully

Next, the Titanic as it is sinking (artist’s rendering):

image of the RMS Titanic sinking

Finally, the corporate logo:

image of the adidas logo

Looks about right, doesn’t it?

so they signaled to their partners in the other boat for them to come and help them. And they came and filled both of the boats, so that they began to sink.

Luke 5:7

Stud Finder

One of the joys of buying a home is finding all the things the previous owners did to it. I know I used my first house as a learning experience to know how to and how not to do certain repairs/improvements.

I am redoing one of the closets in our house. I pulled off the boards that held up the old shelf in the closet and found this:

image of holes drilled in a wall to find the stud

Apparently there was not a studfinder handy when he installed that shelf. And just in case you think it was an isolated case, here is the other wall of the closet:

image of holes drilled in a wall to find the stud

The board wasn’t that long, about 15″ maybe.

On the plus side, I now know where exactly the stud is and where it isn’t.

A little bit of spackling and paint, and no one will ever know. As long as they don’t read this post.

He passed through the hill country of Ephraim and passed through the land of Shalishah, but they did not find them. Then they passed through the land of Shaalim, but they were not there. Then he passed through the land of the Benjamites, but they did not find them.

1 Samuel 9:4

Pumpkin Vandals

Back around the beginning of November, we had pumpkins sitting on our front porch. The kids had carved them into jack-o-lanterns, so they were just sitting there looking nice.

One morning, however, I opened the door to find that someone had vandalized them during the night.

image of some smashed pumpkins

It was more than just a smashing, as they evidently took some time mashing them up..

It was disconcerting that someone had taken the time to find our secluded house solely for the sake of ruining our kids’ carvings, as I didn’t see anything else amiss.

But then I looked closer.

image of some smashed pumpkins

And I saw claw marks.

I revised my guess about what happened to include raccoons instead of teenaged humans. And it restored my faith in our little neighborhood.

And now all its carved work They smash with hatchet and hammers.

Psalm 74:6

Bulb Trouble

There are a number of fun things that happen when you drive a 15-year-old car. One of which is replacing light bulbs.

One headlight stopped working. Not knowing exactly how old the bulb was (worst case: 15 years), I stopped by the parts store and bought a pair of headlight bulbs.

After I got home, I opened the back of the headlight and started to replace the bulb. Once I finally unplugged the bulb from the connector, I was greeted by a lump of melted and burned plastic. The connector of the wiring harness was partially gone and the terminals were not making a solid connection. I put the new bulb on just for fun but it didn’t fare any better. So I adjusted the terminals on the connector and plugged the old bulb back in. Success! So I left the old bulbs in place.

Since I didn’t trust the connector (something is not right if plastic is melting and charring), I ordered a replacement wiring connector. The bulb stopped working a couple days later again, so I swapped out the old connector for the new connector and the bulb has been fine ever since.

Then a couple weeks later, the turn signal starting blinking rapidly. That usually means one of the bulbs burned out, so I went and bought replacement turn signal bulbs. However, the new bulb didn’t work either.


I put the old bulb back in and it didn’t work. I set the assembly down so I could figure out what was going on and the old bulb started working again. Turns out the wiring harness was a little flaky. The bulb stopped and started working a couple more times as I reinstalled the turn signal assembly. But I got it stable and everything was good.

For a couple days.

Then the turn signal started blinking rapidly again, telling me that the wiring harness flaked out again. So I ordered a replacement turn signal connector and wiring. And I drove for a few days with a bad turn signal while I waited for the equipment to come in the mail.

Finally, the connector arrived. I went out to the car and turned on the signal. I was surprised to see that the front turn signal was fine and the back turn signal was bad. Of course, the back turn signal uses a different bulb than the front. So now I had to stop at the parts store and get a new bulb.

I replaced the back bulb and everything was fine.

So now I have a spare set of headlights and a spare turn signal connector, so I’ll be prepared in case they ever go out.

Moral of the story: diagnose the problem before buying replacement parts, not after.

Behold this; we have investigated it, and so it is. Hear it, and know for yourself.

Job 5:27