So on Saturday, thousands of years after the original visit by Stove-dick, I get a mysterious and rambling phone message. Ed and I both listen to it repeatedly and end up deducing that Stove-Dick is calling to say that the part he needed to make my oven work again has come in. We make an appointment for him to come by on Monday.
He arrived, whistling and carrying a big red drill, and began removing the backing from the stove. I had noticed something that gave his theory about the control panel being the defective part a little more credence: the cook timer had stopped working. I told him so, and he literally puffed up, loudly citing it as proof that this must be what was wrong. He installed the clock. We turned it on. The broil worked. On bake...the lower element did not come on.
Me: "It's still not coming on."
Me: "The lower element is still not working." I touched it.
Him: "Um. Well, on some stoves the upper element won't come on during bake --"
Me: "Yes, but this one did. You looked at the circuit, remember?"
He looked at the circuit again. He also started looking very nervous. He borrowed our phone and called the manufacturer.
Him: "They're saying that they've changed the clo- the control panels, and that now when you put this oven on bake it will only use the bottom element."
Me: "So what has been fixed?"
Him: "...the cook timer is working now."
I would LIVE WITHOUT THE COOK TIMER. I would not have CALLED him about a cook timer. I am CONCERNED about being able to BAKE EVER AGAIN.
Ed and I both express a great deal of worry about the viability of the stove as it is, as fixed looks an awful lot like broken to us. We call his supervisor, who tells me that it is entirely possible that Kenmore changed the way the control panels work for this stove, or that Stove-Dick read the circuit wrong. Both of them convince us to try and bake something in the stove, and if it is still broken, they'll both return to fix it, as the work is guaranteed. We reluctantly agree.
One final bit of annoyance: while he was here, Stove-dick was going to fix the drawer at the bottom of the oven, which had fallen off the track, and the bearing needed to be replaced. He ntoed, when he first saw it, the hole for the bearing was stripped. He came over today with new skid, a new bearing, began to fix it --
Him: "The bearing won't fit."
Him: "You've been fiddling with it since it broke, see, so the hole is stripped --"
Me: "We know. You saw this last time. You said you were going to order a larger bearing to compensate."
Me: "You knew that and were going to fix it."
Him: "Oh. Well, I could order the part again --"
It was around then that Ed and I gave up and politely kicked him out of the apartment.
There is a happy little epilogue to this saga. After Stove-dick's departure, I tried to bake some cookies. They came out beautifully. It seems that, despite his best efforts, Stove-dick may have fixed the problem. We're keeping an eye on it (translation: I am going to do a lot of baking in the next little while) and we'll see what happens.
In other news, there is no hot water in the shower. The hot water tap, which had been leaking a bit, finally gave up the ghost on Sunday. It's wobbly, loose, leaky, and won't turn on. All the water we have available to us the the shower is the gelid, just-above-freezing temperature of the showers in prison or hell.
So, yesterday, I loaded a little tote up with a towel, shampoo and conditioner, shower gel, and a bath puff, and went to the girl's locker room in the fitness centre. Their showers are...very open concept, which is a little nerve-wracking, but the water works. It required rigging up an elaborate towel-and-tote throw and sidewaysing myself into a disturbingly open stall, then getting my sadals wet because I couldn't bear to touch the dubouis tile with skin, but I bathed and felt human again. It was a harrowing experience but well worth the price to be clean, soft, and smelling of ginger and lime again.
There is a very nice plumber currently in his shirtsleeves, poking at the faucets and hopefully returning the blessed gift of hot water to our household. If not, I have my mobile-shower-tote at the ready.