I is for Idiot

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An Entry for the Blogging from A to Z Challenge in April

“This story is about a lot of things, but mostly about idiots. So it needs saying from the outset that it’s always very easy to declare that other people are idiots, but only if you forget how idiotically difficult being human is. Especially if you have other people you’re trying to be a reasonable good human being for.”

So Fredrick Backman introduces his Anxious People. If you liked his A Man Called Ove, you may like this book too.

I found it fun, like a “who’s on first, what’s on second” kind of mystery. One of my bookclubs this month didn’t know if reading it made us idiots, too, or just anxious. Read it and figure it out.

I was pondering the word idiot this morning as I was congratulating myself for not being foolish while solving yet another problem. Since my water softener geyser of last Monday, my TV hasn’t worked. I don’t watch a lot, so it was not a problem while I was (and still am) emerging from that fiasco.

But this morning I surveyed my furnace room that houses the TV equipment and, until this week, the water softener, and, of course, the furnace and hot water heater. Observing the situation, I decided to start analyzing the numerous cords dangling from the two pieces of stuff that have to do with the TV.

One skinny mini cord was dangling, not attached to anything. Could my plumbers of the week have dislodged it? One other time, my husband had called our cable provider to fix another cord like it. That turned out to be as simple as taping the end of the cord to the side of one piece of the equipment. I’d surely feel stupid if I called the cable company and the dangling cord now was just supposed to be dangling or could be fixed with a piece of tape.

But then I got a brilliant idea. The surge protector that had held the main electrical cord had been swimming in water after the geyser. What if I jimmied the cord loose (it was very snuggly wedded into its connection) and plugged it straight into the wall outlet?

Bingo! Apparently some part of the TV was on when the drowning occurred, because there I was standing in my furnace room when I heard folks talking in the living room! It was that part of the TV that shows up every once in a while when only sound comes with no picture. A few more punches on the remote produced both a picture and sound. Wow!

I saved myself a call to the cable company. And I never got anxious. Not only was I proud of myself, I think even Backman’s characters who were involved in a hostage situation would be proud of how I handled my latest crisis.

The original culprit. Can YOU identify all those wires and pipes and levers?