Thursday, November 4, 2010

Don't Take Your Cutlery For Granted

I am extremely pleased with myself today. Well, I was even more pleased with myself last night, but I’m still hanging on to this strange and tingly feeling. In my last post I told you about the “new” dishwasher M and I bought. We got it used on the internet, picked it up ourselves from someone’s dark garage, cash only, put it into M’s tiny little car and carried it up to our apartment, where it stood in the living room for days. We didn’t want to have to call anyone for help, so we stared at the thing for a while and finally figured out what we’d need to make it work. So, after a trip to the store to get a hose clamp and a nozzle adapter, another trip to the store to get a new nozzle adapter because M lost the gasket to the first, a third trip to the store to get detergent and rinse aid, and a an hour of scrubbing off the dirt, last night we had finally installed our very own dishwasher.

Fearlessly, I pressed “ON” and jumped behind the kitchen table to wait for the explosion. The explosion never came, and the dishwasher happily dishwashed for what seemed like two hours, but was probably closer to an hour and a half. Success!

Now we just have to work up the courage to run the dishwasher with actual dishes in it.

Although, I do feel a little bad for being so spoiled. Dishwasher, washing machine... Did you know that every fourth person in the third world doesn’t even own a separate salad fork and dessert fork? A real eye-opener isn’t it? Oh well, at least my salad fork will be clean as a whistle.

My tin whistles. They’re not very clean.


  1. My salad fork was mortally humiliated when I used it for dessert the other night. Thus it committed suicide. Now the spoon is the single remaining parent of the spork. I'm considering introducing her to a pair of chopsticks, but now that I think about it, that could get awkward. Especially considering her past with the butter knife (I have several teaspoons...)

  2. Cruella: Oh my lord, having cutlery is like having an entire soap opera in your kitchen drawer. Such drama! I'm really sorry about your salad fork, though. Take care of the spoon, those teaspoons need their mommy.

  3. Once, at a very fancy restaurant in England, a waiter slapped my hand for using the wrong fork with my salad. That has almost nothing to do with your excellent post about your experience with the new dishwasher, but it's the first thing that came to mind when I read it. The second thing that came to mind was a question: Why do you own so many tin whistles? Wouldn't one do? The third thing that came to mind was another question: Couldn't you put your dirty tin whistles in the dishwasher? The fourth thing: What's Ecotronic? Is that a Russian brand?

  4. MikeWJ: That was a very rude waiter. Then again, he was English, so he probably didn't think twice about being rude. I own so many tin whistles because they are all different. Different tone, different key, and most importantly, different color. Also, I was never allowed to buy several pianos while growing up, so I'm making up for it now. However, I don't think tin whistles would do very well in a dishwasher. And I have no idea what Ecotronic is. I've never seen it before. It's probably Romanian.

  5. Ziva, that dishwasher looks just fine to me. What's ugly about it! I'm so excited! No more dishpan hands for Ziva or M either! I can't wait to see how it works when you put dishes in it!

    Salad forks, desert forks, man! You are one sophisticated lady. I use a knife and fork for Alex and me. No salad forks, no desert forks, no fish knives, no teaspoons, no butter knives. But when we have company! I go all out! I pull out the old German sterling, and mix it with the old English sterling, and set a table that would confuse a diplomat! I even put out the salt spoons. I love confusing my guests!

  6. Linda: It's yellow! I want my dishwasher to be all white, or all off white, not yellow and white. Yuck, that's almost as bad as stirring your coffe with the salt spoon. I'm so looking forward to dinner at your house! I'll totally steal a butter knife as a souvenir. Unless you frown upon stealing, in which case I'll be extra careful to make sure you don't notice.

  7. Hey, I looked Ecotronic up on the Internet and here's what I found out about the company:

    Our unique and very popular range of Ecotronic toys was born out of a desire, as a company, to see the toy industry move towards being more environmentally friendly. Using dynamo technology, we have created a range of products which have all the benefits of electronic toys, but no traditional batteries – no replacement costs, no hunting round for screw drivers to undo the battery casing and no throwing old batteries onto land fill sites! The range includes products such as a rocket, a pull along duck, football radios, girly heart and butterfly radios – a tantalising buzz wire called Mr Robot Head and a fantastic range of wind up torches in a variety of animal designs.

    Turns out you and M bought a Barbie doll dishwasher. Cool!

  8. Life here in the third world is much more easier: you eat with you hands! :) (actually right hand)

  9. Darling Ziva, there is no need to steal anything unless it adds to your pleasure. Any old (or new) thing you want is yours. Those cute little butter knives will make your heart pound, I promise! And you must take at least 2. One for you and one for M. (Oh, maybe one for your sis too.)

  10. A separate salad fork and dessert fork? No wonder you need a dishwasher. You've got more cutlery than the third, fourth, and fifth worlds combined. Holy fork, woman.

  11. Putting the crockery in for the first time is a bit scary. Bit like letting your sirstborn go on her first school trip.

    But there are other fun things you can do with dishwashers:

    - Wash sweat baseball caps. Just roll them up and put them into the cutlery basket.

    - Cook salmon in them. This is quite true. Just wrap a salmon filet (or more than one, if you have company) making sure it is well sealed and wash at 65°C. Do not add detergent or rinse aid.

  12. I love your dishwasher practice run. Our dishwasher once leaked all over our kitchen floor while my husband was replacing a part. Our dream of one day owning a swimming pool had finally come to pass.

    In the third world, do you use your left hand for the salad and your right hand for the main course? Inquiring minds and all. I guess soup would pose a challenge.

    The cutlery drawer in my kitchen always clanks and rattles from constant bickering among the knives and forks. The spoons attempt to spoon against the opposing factions but are chastised for being wusses. Why can't we just all get along?

  13. MikeWJ: This explains everything! I was wondering why it came with a Stay-at-home-Mom Barbie, and why the moving parts didn't actually move. The dynamo is a hassle, though. M has to keep pedaling the bike for the entire time the dishwasher is on.

    BLOGitse: Over here it's considered rude to only eat with your right hand. You really should teach the Africans to eat with both hands.

    Linda: When I grow up I want to be just like you and have more than one butter knife. You're my hero.

    noname: Oh, the salad and dessert forks are nothing yet. Wait til I start telling you about the cutlery I own that's especially designed for shellfish, the little tiny forks used to get pickled herring out of the jar and those weird-looking pliers used for snails.

    Jon: You know, I've heard about the salmon thing before, but I assumed someone was making a joke. But it does sort of make sense, because often when I'm about to cook the salmon for dinner, the oven is busy washing my dishes.

    Lauren: I guess they have straws for soup? You're so lucky, finally getting that swimming pool. I'm going to have to talk to M about that.

    Now, cutlery drawer politics is serious stuff. I've learned that it's all in how you organize it. If you put the knives next to the forks, they will stab them in the back. But if you put the spoons next to the knives, it will end in a bloodbath. The only way of really dealing with the problem is to have three drawers for spoons, forks and knives respectively.

  14. Pickled herring? Oh, yeah, you guys are into that. We've got cutlery for lobster and clams. Sometimes it's amazing how hard one has to work to get at their food.

  15. Now oysters. There's something you really have to work hard at.

  16. YAY! I'm very impressed you two were able to hook up your new/used dishwasher without the help of a professional!

  17. I'm very afraid of the cutlery. Maybe I should not have left it in the dishwasher so long...

    I'm sorry your dishwasher is a strange color. That's what happens when you buy it from Guido on the street corner. ;-)

  18. noname: I've never had oysters. I'm not sure I would like it. It's no pickled herring, after all.

    meleah: I was extremely impressed too. I still flinch every time I press "ON". I'm pretty sure something will go wrong sooner or later.

    Reffie: Do not, I repeat, do NOT leave the cutlery in the dishwasher for too long. It will hunt you down and get you while you're sleeping.

  19. This is exactly why all our cutlery is plastic.

  20. Nicky: I thought is was plastic so Jepeto wouldn't hurt himself while using it.



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