Sunday, September 13, 2009

Toasters and Horses

This is a post that has to do with toasters, not horses. Several years ago, we got struck by lightening, and it fried many of the appliances in our house. One of the dearly departed was a reliable old toaster oven that I’d owned for about 20 years. When I went to Target to purchase another one, a shiny red Oster model captured my fancy. It was kind of retro-styled and quite elegant, with a convection oven as well as a regular toaster oven.

I think it was only a couple of slices of bread later that the trouble began. My husband turned on the timer and when it went off, the pieces weren’t toasted yet. So, he twisted the knob and tried to give it a few more minutes. He made the mistake of walking away. When the bell dinged, he came back to his charred bread and began to howl. I should have just returned it then and there. But life was busy, the receipt got misplaced, the toaster looked so good in our kitchen, etc., etc. Now, over four years later, we’re still wrestling with this stupid appliance.

It has a will of its own. I can put in a piece of bread and stand watching it for ten minutes. Yes, it takes FOREVER to toast. Then, the phone rings, my daughter wants me to help her with her hair, I have some momentary distraction. As soon as I turn my back, this toaster seizes the opportunity and blackens the toast. It happens almost every third time, since it takes me about two painfully long sessions of watching bread brown to make me forget and walk away long enough to burn something again.

Now that I describe it, maybe there is a connection here to horses. How many of us have experienced annoying behavior from our horses and just learned to ignore it, get around it or put up with it? I’ve tried over the years not to fall into this trap of not wanting an argument or not admitting there’s a problem. In the beginning, with Silk, I made excuses for her and for myself. It was only when I accepted what was wrong and worked it out with my horse that I was able to lose that nagging feeling of dread and anxiety. The only time I feel that way now is when I’m about to brown a piece of bread.

So, maybe my horses do have something to teach me about dealing with toasters.

8 comments:

the7msn said...

A perfect observation. I was watching Unforgiven last night for the umpteenth time, and Clint Eastwood's horse was still walking off on him when he tried to mount. Even iconic cowboys put up with annoying and dangerous behavior from their horses - although in this case, it provided for some much need comic relief. The question is, how much longer will your family put up with that toaster?

Nuzzling Muzzles said...

I enjoyed this post. You wouldn't believe how many new items I've just tossed in the trash because they had some annoying problem and I didn't have the time to drive all the way back into the city to return them. Sometimes I think that manufacturers count on consumers being too busy to hassle with returning goods that don't work. Correlating that with horses is perfect. There really are too many things competing for our attention, and we can only solve so many problems at once.

deejbrown said...

Free yourselves from toaster anxiety. Life is too short to waste waiting for a browned (or blackened) slice of bread. Get a a regular toaster (my toaster oven always failed at bread) and spend those minutes outside with your horses!

John and Regina Zdravich said...

Sounds like your toaster is possessed -- like something out of a Stephen King novel..........

Callie said...

LMAO! My daughter forced me to retire my Mother's old toaster she ahd gotten for a wedding present. She was married in the early 1940's. I put it under the cabinet and the new one to be brought in. It's ok, does the job, but apparently I was the only one who could understand the quirks of the old one and get it just right, LOL!

Anonymous said...

I can beat that. Our barn well has slowed water flow over the years. Finally this past weekend we put in a new well. Now it takes 2 hours to do what was taking 19 hours. Procrastinate? Us?
Oh. My. God.

Lisa said...

Lovely observations. I so enjoyed reading this post. I'm sure I have several 'toasters' laying around that I should be dealing with. :-)

Thanks

Horseartist said...

I'm just now starting to ride my 3 year old. And I am determined not to let him become a toaster... I WILL work on the dancey feet and the other potentially annoying issues before just riding away.

Thanks. Perfect Lesson from your toaster.