Saturday, December 19, 2009

never surrender

Okay, i suppose i don't mean never surrender, but "don't give up until you have exhausted all of your options" doesn't have quite the same ring to it, now does it?
Did i mention how much i loved my toaster which recently went kerplooey in the middle of cooking my breakfast?
It didn't look easy to get into, but i figured that if it was already broken, what would it matter if i broke it more trying to get inside? So as i settled in to watch Season One of Bones i set up the coffee table as a work space to disassemble my toaster.
I find it easier to undertake such a task with a wee snack, hence the sliced Gala apple with warm chocolate-peanut butter dip. [1 handful of chocolate chips, 2 handfuls of peanut butter chips, microwave about 2 minutes, stirring every 45 seconds - YUM]
There were 2 small slide panels with screws that obviously held the plastic cover to the toaster innards.
Once they were removed, the cover wouldn't budge. Then i noticed a a wire cover. Now we're getting somewhere.
The cover would wiggle at the bottom, but wouldn't unclip from the right side.
hmmmmmm... Of course!
 That's were the darkness control knob was so i jimmied it off.
Now i could lift the cover almost all the way off and could see where i believed the broken part to be, but the toaster plunger-popper (you know: the lever you push down to get the bread to go down and start cooking; the one that pops up when your english muffin's nooks and crannies are golden brown - i don't know what it's really called, but you're with me, right?) wouldn't allow me to gain complete access inside.
Hmmmmmm... it wasn't as easy as the knob, but i got it off.
have you ever seen the inside of your toaster?
  So cool, but kind of crumby.
I was hoping that maybe there were crumbs interfering with some connection that i could just clean.
But alas, it looks like the clasp that catches the internal lever of the plunger-popper
(to the left of the blue cover above my finger) is not properly clasping.
It would couple correctly if i held the lever down, but released instantly.
Wait a second. This toaster has a feature where it you can't push down the toast if it isn't plugged in.
Hmmmmm... That means i need to test it with full electricity without the cover on.
Hmmmm... does that seem like a good idea?
Does that seem safe?
Would anyone find my body since i live alone? At least i don't have a cat that would start to eat my corpse to stave off starvation...
Okay, then.
I took it back into the kitchen, plugged it in and used a long wooden spoon to depress the metal lever and yikes! I was apparently a bit more nervous than i realized cause the spoon slipped when it hit bottom and there was an impressive blue-green spark from the back of the toaster.
CRAP Time for a little internal pep talk.
Knowledge is the difference between respect and fear, Niki. If you are gonna undertake anything experimental that is even remotely dangerous there are 3 rules:
1. Have an adult safety partner.
2. Be confident in your safety parameters.
3. DON'T FLINCH, you wuss.
Okay, now; let's check the situation against the rules: 1. I don't have an adult partner, but there is really nothing i can do about that now. The front door is unlocked so at least if i scream my neighbors can get in. 2. Yes, wall current can kill me. But all of the electrical components inside the toaster appear to be intact which means there shouldn't be any electricity in the lever. Plus, even if there is a short or an open arcing to it, the wood will insulate me. 3. Okay, i'm confident and need to try it again without being so tentative. Gotta commit. Okay.
I tried it 2 more times, but the latch was definitely faulty. Unfortunately it was made out of plastic so there was no way to repair it. Finding someone to fix it would certainly cost as much, if not more, than a new toaster. le sigh... I am resigned to parting with this toaster.
I found a new one that only costs $7. No matter what i get it will be a disappointment compared to my awesome old toaster so i may as well go with something cheap and crappy. Then when i replace that one -after getting my $7 worth out of it- the next toaster will HAVE to be better then it and i won't be so unhappy. Holy crap, i just bought a rebound toaster, didn't I?


Rea said...

But did you get a star for the effort?? All the good then!

Douglas said...

Did you try sticking a fork in it?

Christina said...

Silly! Use a RUBBER spoon/spatula. Breaks the current.

Anonymous said...

OK, catching up on life in the Nikiverse, I was pretty sure you didn't die or maim yourself too seriously, as you lived to post about it, and I've had a few texts from you since, but wow that made me nervous. I'm reading this like "No, Niki no! This can't be a good idea!" Glad you're OK and in the end, sorry it didn't work.