My Washing Machine Tried to Kill Us

Pictured below is the monster currently on trial for attempted murder. Don’t let its cool exterior fool you. It is deadly and ruthless. And it’s probably going to get away with it too. Because its white. And we have a lot of dirty clothes.

When will we be free of the tyranny of white appliances?

When will we be free of the tyranny of white appliances?

Recently my parents and I moved into a new home. (Don’t worry, I have a job. It’s totally not lame.) We’ve spent the last few weeks getting settled in and making it pretty much the most ballin’ house I’ve ever lived in. The only problem was that for two or three weeks we did not have a washer or a dryer.

The clothes piled up. I gave the pile a name; Frank. We kept putting off getting the washer. “Oh we don’t need to buy a new one.” “Oh it’s too rainy to go pick it up.” “Oh there’s a re-run of Gilmore Girls on.”

I mean, I get it. You stop most things  when Lauren Graham is on TV.

I mean, I get it. You stop most things when Lauren Graham is on TV.

I went to friends’ houses to do laundry but I felt weird invading their space with my dirty underwear. When I ran out of dry towels, I just bought more towels.

Finally, Sunday was the day. My dad and I loaded into his Tundra and made our way to pick up our new washer/dryer combo from a shipping container in the middle of the woods. Loading it in was easy enough. Drive up to where it’s stored. Tip it into the back of the truck. Drive home.

Once we got it home we then faced the problem of getting it up two flights of stairs into the master bedroom. We got it in the grass easy enough. Then my dad started looking around for ways to prolong getting it inside. He suggested we might need backup. Maybe he could run to Walmart and find magical moving straps that made things super easy to carry. But I was defiant, cocky and in desperate need of clean socks.

I forced him to move on, thinking that my superhero shirts have granted me powers. I said things like, “Dude, we’re strong men. I bench press now. Read my blog.”

It took us 20 minutes to get it inside and onto the initial landing of the stairs.

Now, I’ve never climbed a mountain. I’m pretty afraid of heights, but I hear, it’s hard. That day 12 rickety ass steps became my Everest.

Totally applicable analogy.

Totally applicable analogy.

We assumed that it would be easier to lay it down on a blanket and simply slide it up the stairs. I climbed the stairs, guiding it over each step as my dad pushed. The first three were great. He was pushing, I was lifting, it was sliding along like gangbusters. Father/son bonding acquired.

Then the sweat kicked in. Then the blanket refused to move along with washer. Our grips slipped, his foot tripped and our delightful father/son day became a terrifying action thriller.

The first sign of serious trouble was when my dad put his foot through the wall.

Dad: "Good thing I know how to do sheet-rock."

Dad: “Good thing I know how to do sheet-rock.”

We forced the washer up a couple more stairs. There was no good place to grab a hold of this thing, so when my fat little finger started getting oiled up with man-sweat, I couldn’t really lift it that well anymore.

Then I lost my shoe. And never in my life have been more scared to lose a shoe.

I threw it to the side initially, because deep down I still believed I was Superman. “Screw it, I’ll move this bitch in my socks. Who cares?” I think my dad might have cared a little bit. Because now I could lift the washer at all. It clanked uselessly against the wooden step as my foot slipped and slid, robbing me of precious leverage.

I tried again and again in vain to lift the washer over a stupid inch of wood, but I couldn’t get it. Sweat poured down our faces and the washer started to slide down the stairs.

Now, I’ve never seen what it looks like the moment before a man dies, but if the look in my dad’s eyes was any indication, it’s freaking terrifying. I wanted to cry on the spot. Just throw my hands up. “Oops, I killed my dad. I thought I was strong, but I am weak and I let a washer/dryer combo crush him.”

Luckily, he’s super strong too and was able to hold the thing while I cried like a little baby at the top of the steps. He gathered the blanket and through it off the steps. I went back to trying to lift it. I sat down on the top step because I couldn’t stand without my stupid shoe.

Finally, through stiffled panic and tears, I told my dad that I was going to get my shoe. Cue heroic music.

Thank you Mr. Williams.

Thank you Mr. Williams.

I grabbed the shoe, slid it on my foot and rediscovered the gift of leverage. I lifted the washer up, sort of like the way mother’s lift cars to rescue their babies.

With a few more struggled pushes and pulls, we got the washer up to the landing and called for reinforcements to get it into the room.

It looks like it should have been so much easier than it was.

It looks like it should have been so much easier than it was.

Ultimately I’m proud what my father and I were able to accomplish. It was a large and stupid task, but we met it head on and showed that we are, in fact, a couple of big strong men. I’m also super happy to have pants again. So there’s that. Was it worth almost dying for? No. But at least there’s clean pants.


Maybe An Apocalypse Sounds Good After All

The more people ask me what I’m going to do now that I’ve graduated college, the more I realize just how much I was banking on that whole 2012 apocalypse thing.I don’t think I did the best planning for life after turning 20.

I’m not saying that I believed in the whole Mayan prophecy thing, but part of me totally believed the whole Mayan prophecy. This was not the rational or even coherent part of me. This was the part of me that also often battles the fear of ghosts and enjoys watching “Pawn Stars.”

I'm not sure which creeps me out  more: ghosts or those chins.

I’m not sure which creeps me out more: ghosts, the end of the world, or those chins. I think they’re all connected, to be honest.

When I was in high school, I would laugh at the doomsday prophets, but deep down I was doing the math. I’d be cleaning the bathroom when I would get that glazy eyed thousand yard stare and wonder, “If the world really does end in 2012, how old will I be?” 20 years old. So I started planning for what I could accomplish by the time I turned twenty and subconsciously forgetting that, “hey, maybe you should figure out what’s going to happen when you turn 21 or 25. Because you know, the world was not going to end you dumbass.”

Even on December 20, 2012 I kept walking around thinking, “The world might end today.” I wasn’t quaking in my boots or anything. I was stocking up my End of Days bunker although I did happen to have a ton of cans of tuna at home. Just in case. I kind of felt like I should do the whole “Last day on Earth” hoopla. Carpe that diem. Do all the things I’d always wanted to do. You know, just in case. But I looked around my room and realized that I did have a bitchin’ Buffy the Vampire Slayer collection so I felt accomplished enough to take a nap.

I was a little surprised to wake up on December 21. The new year came and it felt weird to see dates that said 2013. I mean, John Cusak made a movie about how I was going to die. It takes some time to recover from that. But after a day or two the shock of living in this world that shouldn’t exist wore off and I went on being a normal person who wasn’t crazy. And it was refreshing.

Damn you, Cusack! Didn't you hurt me enough with "Must Love Dogs?"

Damn you, Cusack! Didn’t you hurt me enough with “Must Love Dogs?”

Until I graduated college and realized that those decisions I made when I thought I was gonna die at twenty had to carry to being an adult. I mean, it’s not like I went on some crazy meth bender or robbed seventeen banks in Missouri. To be honest, for someone who kind of thought the world was ending, I lived a remarkably boring life. I ate a lot of pizza. Probably should have done a few more push-ups.But now it seems that I have to make my little foray into art school actually payoff and that fact has a tendency to stop me in my tracks.

Every once in a while I’ll just stare off into the distance as I do the dishes and think, “I spent how much money getting a writing degree?! Why would I do that?!”

It’s hard coming back home and being showered with questions like “So what are you going to do now?” and “What does one do with a writing degree?” I sit at home and read Aquaman comic books. That’s what I do with a writing degree.

Who needs a plan for the future when you can spend all day pretending to be the king of the ocean?

Who needs a plan for the future when you can spend all day pretending to be the king of the ocean?

I want to come up with grand, oddball plans when I get these questions. “Oh, I’m moving to Spain to become a bull fighter.” Or, “I’m going to reshoot the film ‘Free Willy’ on my iPhone with my neighbor’s cat.” But then I just feel bad in comparison when the real answer is much less exciting. “I’m just kind of seeing what comes my way. I tell people I’m writing a book but I’ve been stuck on chapter 16 since February.”

But the funny thing is that I haven’t stopped fearing the end of the world. I just think I’m living in it now. I keep worrying that my world is falling apart around me, because I don’t have a plan for what comes next. It’s not the end of the world, though, no matter how much easier that would make things. It’s the exact opposite actually. It’s just the start. And it’s time to no longer be content with just having a bitchin’ Buffy the Vampire Slayer collection.