washer & dryer; Reagan

This week reverted back to the non-post on wednesday, I would have let the fact be known on Tuesday had I known it anytime before about 4p.m. on Wednesday. Sorry for any inconvenience.

I have recently realized that there are only two types of people in the U.S.. Yes, I have broken down every single race, denomination and class into exactly two groups. Those two groups are 1) People who own matched washer/dryer sets, and 2) People who do their laundry at a central facility in an apartment complex, or, worse yet, have to take their laundry to some laundromat in a really bad area of town where fear of life becomes more important than the quality of cleaning. Now, this second group of people (like me) are the ones that are happy to find a used washer or dryer at a favorable price, brand names be damned! Having your own machines makes it an experience that is not quite so intolerable, as the machine is just running in the background while you are doing your normal routine. No special trip to the laundromat, no changing in dollars for quarters, no having to question why the one guy has seven garbage bags filled with bloody towels, etc..

I do understand that in some apartment complexes, and particularly in condos, they really don’t want you to have the machines. That is likely the reason that most apartments/condos do not even provide a hook-up for the devices. I understand also that the space in an apartment is pretty cramped but they have full washer/dryer stack things that are made to fit in the space of a small closet and have all of the features of normal machines, though not the same capacity. Imagine that your options were to do a few small loads of laundry a week, or drag it all down to the public laundry at the end of the week, I know which option I would choose, but, as previously stated, many apartments/condos do not have proper ventilation for the dryer.

That little digression aside, I was meaning to explain why washers and dryers can start out as pairs yet end up as singles. The reason for that is pretty simple; the washer just lasts longer than the dryer in about 90% of the pairs. The simple reasoning behind that is that the washer is a big tub that spins with a direct drive, while the dryer is an enormous drum that is belt-driven and relies on little wheels to keep it on course. The wheels on the dryer are likely to give out under a large load, that is, the bearings will begin to disentegrate and the dryer will sound like it is spinning a piece of lumber in it. When that happens, the people who own the matched set of laundry appliances will likely call a repairman. The dryer can be fixed for about Eight dollars retail in parts, anything above that is them being screwed by the manufacturer.

The dryer is the first casualty in most every case. While the dryer could be repaired for less than a week’s worth of quarters at the laundromat, it is very rare that a ‘set owner’ would actually call the man to repair it (since that would cost more than the value of the dryer in many cases) and so another dryer ends up on the street, soon to be picked up by a local “re-seller” of such items. Said ‘re-seller’ will pay the eight bucks for parts, fix the dryer, and then sell it for fifty. Hefty chunk of change for such a quick/easy repair, and having picked the dryer up from the side of the road, he had no investment into the machine.

The fate of the washer then goes into a kind of limbo. Some may sell the washer, some may gift it to a friend or relative in need of that appliance, it is just a bit strange that the washer never seems to hit the side of the road.

I have had to replace the wheels on a few dryers in my time, I don’t think I have ever had matching laundry appliances in that time either. Yet, when the washer starts to leak, I have no idea how to fix it. I am sure there is just a hose that is broken somewhere inside that porcelain machine, where it is I do not know. It is for exactly that reason that we will continue to use a Kenmore dryer once we get the Maytag washer. The old Gibson washer will be pushed to the curb, and likely someone will pick it up and throw a two dollar piece into it, then sell it along with a random dryer for 150 bucks for the set.

This one just goes to prove my point that while technology has advanced, if you do not know the exact type of technology necessary for said operation, you will pay whatever they ask.

• Random Thoughts on Reagan

I found out today that there is going to be a Federal Holiday (day of mourning) for the loss of ex-president Ronald Reagan, who passed away on Saturday. I was not old enough to understand a lot of the things that happened while he was president and I likely remember his successes more than his failures, even with that in mind, what did he really do?

The first thing, the one that comes immediately to my mind is the Iran Contra Scandal. Trading weapons for POW’s may seem like a good thing at the time, but in the end it is just wrong. Reagan introduced a tax cut that went across the board, low, medium, high class, the tax cut affected you immediately. Then he signed legislature to raise the same taxes many times over his presidency. It is not my intention to belittle him, but it is just so easy.

I am pretty liberal, very democratic, and I still think that Reagan was possibly the best negotiator that we have ever had when it comes to foreign policy. Some of his Kooky ideas, site “Star Wars” for example, were a bit over the edge, but he did preside at the time that communism was ending and for that I will respect him. Could the same thing have happened if there had been a different president at the time? I think the more relevant question is could it not have happened with another man in charge.

I suppose we will start calling this “Reagan Friday”. What is to stop the national rememberances from having a “Biggy Tuesday”? Biggy died for “gansta rap” and should be remembered…Where is his monument?

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