Even though I don’t like to admit it, washers and dryers play a central role in my life. I’ve owned several through the years. Some have come included with the house purchase, some I admit, I have lovingly brought into my home after hours of deliberation over the yellow Energy Guide label and the carefully worded features brochure. It’s not as if I usually form an emotional attachment to household appliances, but with a family of four – sometimes 5, two dogs, and a pool, I sadly confess that I do some form of laundry every day. My relationship with my laundry partners is like people who become best friends after serving in a war together, a sort of a bonding through adversity. Which is why, when the dryer that came with our house developed a squeak, which turned into a squeal, which developed a clunk, and eventually evolved into a gravel grinding, smoke emitting rasp, we had to break down and buy a new one.
Given my limited financial situation, I could not afford to ponder long on the choosing of the now deceased dryers’ successor. I called around to find only the quickest delivery options on the cheapest models. Turns out, a new dryers’ delivery option, including the essential removal of the old one, is the key to dryer salesmen’s negotiations.
According to the final lucky salesman I spoke to, the choice is simple.
“…of course just because this dryer is on the low end of the price scale doesn’t mean it is not reliable. And of course, its quality is indistinguishable from those that happen to be higher priced. It’s just that those lower priced ones (which to the untrained eye look to be about the same as the higher priced ones) are so much smaller, and take so much longer to dry since the loads have to be so small. Oh, and will you be taking this home in your minivan?”
Silence ensued while I envisioned Downtown Dad and me lugging, hoisting, and heaving this new “small” dryer down the stairs and around the corner into the basement laundry room, and then dragging, pulling and hauling out the old one. Obviously lacking the muscle tone necessary for dryer delivery and removal, I was easy prey for the imminent up sell.
“… over here, for just a few dollars more, is the large capacity model. Would you like us to take away the old dryer when we deliver this one to your home tomorrow?”
True to his word, the dryer salesman dispatched two burley men to deliver my sparkling new dryer and gently maneuver it into place beside the steadfast if not lackluster washer. Then, with all the sensitivity of a highway worker scraping up road-kill, they carted off the old one and drove away, leaving me and the old washer and the mountainous pile of damp, smoky, mildew-y smelling clothes plenty of time to bond with the new guy.