The day the dishwasher died | HumorOutcasts

The day the dishwasher died

March 20, 2017

If you are old enough, you remember where you were the day of the Kennedy assassination, or when you heard the news that Elvis Presley died.

I’ve added a new date to my list of traumatic events: the day the dishwasher died.

Our Kenmore Elite was 13 years old, so I should have seen it coming. Patrick resuscitated it several times over its faithful years of service, utilizing his engineering skills and collection of Craftsman’s.

Despite its age and a few warning signs, I was still shocked when I walked through the door to the news of its demise.

Photo courtesy depositphotos/used with permission

It plunged me into the stages of losing-a-major-appliance grief.

  1. Denial. Does this mean dishwashing by hand? NO! Say it isn’t so? Couldn’t I still load it, and hose dishes with the sink sprayer?
  2. Anger. Who is to blame? Is it possible I clogged the motor with broken glass? Should I have scraped paper labels off marinara jars used for my ‘homemade’ sauce? Doesn’t the God of appliances know how much I suck at washing dishes?
  3. Bargaining. After Patrick determined the fix was beyond his skills and there wasn’t a YouTube with anything to offer, he called the repairman. I began a chant about how I would do better. I promised not to break any more dishes, would remove large food particles, and be alert to dental floss curled in the bottom my milk glass. I promised to use name brand detergent instead of generic. I vowed to buy jet dry.
  4. Depression. The repairman rendered his $60 diagnosis. The cost of repair was prohibitive considering the age of the dishwasher. Dashed was my dream of a new pump or motor whirring this beauty back into life. I lacked motivation to research Consumer Reports, or go shopping. I cried as I envisioned my next paycheck washed away with the grey water. I made a feeble attempt to keep the dirty dishes from overtaking the kitchen.
  5. Acceptance. A calmness rinsed over me. I accepted the inevitable. We bought a new dishwasher, reinforcing Dave Ramsey’s rule that one should always have a $1000 emergency fund. The old dishwasher is on its way to an unmarked appliance gravesite.

Now that I have endured this ebb and flow of emotions, I find myself in the midst of gratitude.

I am thankful we could afford a new dishwasher. I am happy to live in a world where I don’t have to go to the river, break a hole in the ice and wash dishes on the frigid shore. Or plunge chapped hands into hot, soapy water, to hand wash dishes mostly clean, depending on the dish wiper to finish the job.

As my mother’s life expectancy waned, when she bought a new appliance, she reasoned, “This one should last for the rest of my life.” It reminds me that I outlived this dishwasher, and I will not take life for granted. I’m prepared to celebrate when my new one wears out as a badge of longevity (mine, not the dishwashers). Right after I go through the five stages of grief.

When was the last time you had to replace a major appliance? Did you accept its demise with grace or fight it knife and fork, like I did?

For more of my humor go HERE.

Molly Stevens

Molly Stevens blogs at where she shares lighthearted writings about things that (mostly) don’t matter. She writes about a variety of topics, from her love affair with white potatoes, to why she saves user manuals. She tries to appeal to all ages, but since she looks through eyes that are 60 plus years old, her viewpoint is naturally clouded….by budding cataracts. She races to keep up with her younger husband, her son, daughter-in-law and two perfect grandsons. She pays the bills by working as a registered nurse, but fantasizes about a second career as a writer.

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9 Responses to The day the dishwasher died

  1. March 21, 2017 at 12:07 pm

    I live in a co-op, and we are not allowed to have dishwashers or washing machines in our apartments, for obvious reasons.

    My personal preference is to let dishes accumulate in the sink until there is no more room for anything, then wash just enough of them to make some room. Eventually, I will get sick of the mess, wash everything and scour out the sink. I then repeat the whole process.

    Come to think of it, I really shouldn’t be confessing this, should I!

    • March 25, 2017 at 2:14 pm

      Well, if the rubber glove fits…..Haha!

  2. March 21, 2017 at 10:13 am

    Last month my friend turned on her dishwasher and went to bed. The next 7 hours water was pumping furiously into her kitchen. She had 25 Thousand Dollars worth of damage to her entire first floor, and into her basement. So I think your emergency fund was well spent! The stages of grief do wane to acceptance and you seem to have washed your hands of the whole matter!

    • March 25, 2017 at 2:16 pm

      We have adjusted to the diminished bank account and the convenience of the new dishwasher. It is quieter than the old one but still causes the same size bruise when I bump into it, so some things never change. What a disaster your friend endured!

  3. March 21, 2017 at 5:37 am

    Boy, I hope our dishwasher never dies.

    ‘Cause I’m the dishwasher.

    • March 21, 2017 at 12:02 pm

      I was going to post something to this effect, but you beat me to it!

    • March 25, 2017 at 2:16 pm

      Hahahaha! I hope not too, Mark and Kathy. That would be more expensive than replacing a kitchen appliance.

  4. March 20, 2017 at 10:06 am

    I have gone through these stages of dishwasher grief. Alas, I fear my fridge will be the next casualty!

    • March 25, 2017 at 2:18 pm

      Oh no! Not the fridge! You better start shopping now because that gap in coverage is not pretty. Or appetite enhancing.

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