The Refrigerator and The Skunk


I teased you just a bit with a hint of what was to come but unfortunately the story seems to have come to a stall.  The beginning of it is funny, and the ending has some great potential as well, it’s just . . . well, it’s dad.

You see, I was on the back porch of my parent’s house around 8:30 last night and my mother yelled out the window.  “Eric, get your father, something is wrong with the refrigerator!”

I yelled back up, ” . . . and you’re looking to make it worse?!”

“I’m serious, tell him to come up here!”

“So am I.” I said mostly to myself as I walked around the house to, yep, you guessed it, “The Cave”.  You’ve all seen it now.  The doors were all open now and all the lights were on and I just yelled in through the screen.

“Yo!  Mom said come upstairs.  Something is wrong with the refrigerator!”

I hear the volume on the TV come down to something that wouldn’t drown out the earthquake yesterday.  “What?!”

“Something is wrong with the refrigerator and mom wants you upstairs!”

“Awwwww SHIT!  What now?!”

I’m starting to get the hang of this exchange now and know exactly where it’s going and as I walk across the porch to enter the house and go upstairs, I’ve got a grin on my face and I’m thinking “BLOG POST INCOMING!”.  I head up the stairs and I find mom in the kitchen and she’s got all the lights turned off.  She’s got a french door type refrigerator, with one of those really skinny freezers on the left and the only slightly larger fridge on the right and the freezer door stands open.  The contents of the bottom half of the freezer are on the kitchen table and as I look into the freezer, there is a bright, orange glow coming from the back at the bottom.  An ominous sizzling sound can be heard coming from the source of the glow.

I stood back on the other side of the table and looked at it and using my vast knowledge of all shit mechanical, I said, “That’s pretty much not so good.”

Dad finally makes it to the top of the stairs, completely out of breath, which pretty much started around the time he said “Aww SHIT!”.  Of course we’re all idiots for standing in the dark looking into the freezer so he turns on every light within 3 blocks grumbling about “not being able to see what the hell you’re talking about. I don’t see anything glowing!”

Unable to contain my glee at this comment, I spat out “That’s funny, because when the lights were off you could see the gates to hell back there, and besides that, shut up and LISTEN!”

I was going to start this sentence with “He glares at me”, but I think we all know that is pretty much a given at this point.  He puts his head to the freezer to see if he can hear the noise of which we speak, which doesn’t sound too far off from the grill at Waffle House on Sunday morning.  As he does, the motor on the ice maker starts to whir quietly as the little arm lifts up . . . and THIS, ladies and gentleman, is the noise he chooses to hear.  “Oh, that’s the ice maker.  I guess the ice maker has gone bad.”  He pulls the ice tray out (the full ice tray, you know, because the ice maker is WORKING) and puts his ear up against the motor.  I’m standing there looking at the arm lift up, getting ready to dump out another supply of ice into the tray that is no longer there and PRAYING it will sling a cube at full speed into his ear.  “Yeah, that’s the ice maker.”

Ordinarily I would give up and let things go at this point but I found myself unwilling to allow my mother’s house to burn to the ground despite the incentive that he’d be in it at the time.  So I turned the lights back off and pointed at the bottom of the freezer.  “LOOK at what the hell we were trying to tell you about!”  Finally coming to the conclusion that perhaps this is bad, he lies down on the floor and looks up to the coil or tube (it was hard to tell, because, well, it was GLOWING and SIZZLING and all) and peers at it for a moment.

At this point I’m not sure what he was thinking, because he reached up (did I mention GLOWING and SIZZLING?) and he grabbed it.  His hand extracted very quickly from the freezer, along with a long string of expletives.

I had to turn to face the other way and I was biting my lip so hard I thought it was going to bleed.  Not a sound escaped my mouth, but I stood trembling in the corner now, tears pouring down my face.  I look over at my mother who is standing out of my father’s view and she is . . .


She’s got a big grin on her face and she is dancing in place, arms waving in the air and not making a sound.  I bolted out the door because I couldn’t contain my laughter any more.

I don’t care that it’s dark and I don’t give a shit how many skunks are waiting out there.  They would be laughing too.

I’ll explain my mother’s behavior by saying this, while watching my father do something so incredibly stupid does in fact bring us endless hours of entertainment, there is something a little bit more to it.  She has had this refrigerator for 15 years.  She has HATED it for 18 years, so the “I’m getting a new refrigerator” window has opened and she is overjoyed.

By the time I come back in the house, mom has started to empty the contents of the refrigerator onto the kitchen table and dad has pulled it away from the wall to unplug it.  There is another, smaller refrigerator downstairs as well as a deep freezer, so she and I start to fill up the drawers from the refrigerator with food and carry it downstairs.  My father stood in the kitchen and started obsessing about “we used to have a big blue cooler” and “wouldn’t it be easier to put everything in the big blue cooler to carry it down”.

“You shutting up about the ‘big blue cooler’ and HELPING would also be easier.” fell on deaf ears and after about 4 trips we had already moved everything.  He had brought down a half a gallon of milk after it was over and was still bitching about the big blue cooler.

A short while later I heard my father ask my mother if she was working tomorrow to which she replied that she was.  His reply was “Well you know you HAVE to go with me to find a refrigerator tomorrow”!  Because, much like the stove incident, her opinion was going to matter very little, but he’s got to make it look good.  Also, he had a long day of sitting in The Cave doing nothing he had to get done, so it was necessary they get it done as early as possible.

(Now that you folks have seen “The Cave”, you’ll never look at it the same again, will you?)

Enter this morning . . .

Somehow, somewhere, apparently secretly in the middle of the night, the refrigerator is plugged back in and running.  “There’s nothing wrong with the refrigerator.” dad announces.  “It had a build up of ice so it couldn’t work properly and leaving it unplugged during the night cleared it up and it’s fine now.”

Mom is disappointed.  Dad thinks not only is it fixed but that his brilliance alone has caused it to simply “be fixed”.  Things return to precisely where they were before.  Dad is overly thrilled at his genius and the rest of us shake our heads in amazement.  I remain skeptical and fear for my mother’s house.

Because, and this may be just me, in my experience, GLOWING and SIZZLING tend to indicate that ice is MELTING.  So for now, we, meaning my mother, myself and all of you . . . we wait for the rest of this chapter to play out.


I’m going to step out of this story just a little bit and show you why I think the greatest people in my life can all be found on this little glowing screen in front of me and why I turn to them so much more than the actual “in person” people I have around me.

After my post yesterday about the skunks that mercilessly stalk me, I received some comments that let me know that I really do have some actual “stalkers”, and I mean this in the actual great way it was intended.  So for those of you that read and don’t comment, I know you’re there and I see the page hits and I appreciate your coming by and please keep coming back.

There are those of you that do comment and send me messages on Facebook and I love it and keep doing it.

I also wanted to show you the link I clicked on to Christina’s blog at Talking In Circles and found this awesome post that she had written after reading my post yesterday about the skunks.  The image she put together is hilarious and I found the entire post to be funny and incredibly flattering.  So to Christina I’d just like to say thank you so much for not being a skunk and I really appreciate your reading and passing around Opticynicism to your friends and readers.  Please check out her blog, leave her some comments and pass her around as well!

My readers, fans, friends and stalkers are the BEST!

Oh, and you also suck.  I have no Facebook post of the day today because you were all entirely unfunny.  Work on it.

9 thoughts on “The Refrigerator and The Skunk

  1. Dude, that happens when coolant is leaking from those little coolant, pipe, coil parts or whatever in the back. Its going to shit the bed. Keep an eye on it. It really is a fire hazard. If all else fails sabotage that bitch and hook your mom on with a new fridge. Also, shit in his big blue cooler.

  2. Can’t wait to read the conclusion of the refrigerator story. When it comes to purchasing a new one I wonder what one your dad will tell your mom she wants.

    And thanks for passing me around. I kind of feel like a hooker that doesn’t get paid. Which actually would make me a slut but honestly Slut doesn’t look as good on a résumé.

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