Last week, the seemingly inevitable happened in the Laundry Closet.  Our state-of-the-art 12-year-old “fancy” computer-driven Samsung dryer finally had enough.  Since 12 years ago was the first time I’d ever purchased a washer or dryer brand new, and they matched, I’d call them both fancy.

But we’d fixed this monster at least twice already, most notably when moving into our new house three years ago. I tried bouncing it down the stairs strapped to a two-wheel dolly one step at a time, only to discover I’d made a mess of the drum and belt with each thud that hit the since replaced thin shag carpet.  Fortunately, that repair was cheap enough to justify.  This time, not so lucky.

According to the same repairman who’d made two previous treks to the Laundry Closet for said Samsung, the part number (or numbers, not sure how many) was obsolete in a series of part numbers by at least four previous part numbers.  In 12 years?  C’mon!

My dad always said, the day everything in your house is run by computers, you’ve instantly created “built-in obsolescence” (paraphrased, obviously).  I say the same thing about every oversized golf driver that I purchase each time I send a ball into orbit two fairways over…obviously, the technology just isn’t there yet to keep me in the right fairway.

Speaking of technology, did you know October is Cybersecurity Awareness Month?  Perhaps you’ve already heard about the launch of GBQ’s Empower Hour podcast featuring my man Doug Davidson, sharing area leaders’ innovative stories where solid business principles intersect with digital transformation and conscious capitalism.  I promised him a plug in my blog, take a listen, you won’t be disappointed.

Anyway, buying a dryer during COVID, not insanely practical given supply shortages much less the expected delays in delivery time.  For four days we discussed our options, buying new vs. used, local ads vs. big-box retailers, etc.  Since my wife is literally the cream of the crop in all aspects of life, two guys dropped off a brand new (Samsung, of course) dryer in our driveway within 24 hours of making the decision to purchase through Lowes.  I’ll take it.  And to their credit, one look at me told them I wasn’t capable of wiring the giant electrical cord into the new machine correctly.  They not only carried the new beast down to the basement, but they also went ahead and reconnected the electric supply line for me.  Such gentlemen!

Then something I wouldn’t necessarily call inevitable happened…I was kicked out of the (my own) Laundry Room!

Fall is an active time in our house with two boys, both playing multiple sports each season, football being the one responsible for generating several piles of very dirty (and smelly) clothes over a four-day period, in much need of a fully functioning new appliance.  As a result, the remainder of Samsung 2.0’s first day on the job was filled with continuous tumbling and a series of dings every 55 minutes…in “my office”…from early morning to well past closing time.

Imagine the confusion on that morning’s SALT virtual meeting.  Very clearly, most of my team hadn’t seen me in the office that day.  So when I logged into the 10 am Microsoft Teams meeting seated somewhere other than the half cinderblock, half shiplap beauty of a Laundry Closet, my whereabouts dominated the first ten minutes of discussion.  “Go ahead and laugh it up,” I told them.  Who knew the island counter in our kitchen was so unworthy of being a part of the workday?  Everyone most certainly got a good chuckle out of the fact that I’d been banished from the Laundry Closet for one entire workday in order for the children to have fresh practice gear for football on a Thursday night.  How dare they not resemble the dirty, smelly, gross, and usually unshowered animals they are inside the walls of our house, when out of public view?!

Fortunately, every load of patiently piled laundry on the floor made it to the promised land that day and I was back in action in the Laundry Closet the following day.  It’ll be my luck the washer to my now unmatched set of appliances will last another 15 years or more!


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