Monday, September 15, 2014

Trouble brewing (coffee version)

Calamity struck our household last night -- our coffee grinder stopped working.
A very clean, but newly dysfunctional, coffee grinder, 
Of course, this is not really calamity, but the way my husband and I reeled from the blow, you'd think we'd have just discovered our car totaled by the side of the road, or the roof blown off the house.   Immediate action was required.  "Do we go out and buy a new one right now?  on a Sunday night?"   "Can we find some pre-ground coffee somewhere to tide us over?"  

My own head was racing with methods for what I call "preventative shopping"  -- that is, ways to buy a grinder on the cheap so my un-frugal husband wouldn't go to Starbucks or the Mall to get a high-end grinder at full price.  Stalling tactics were in order, so I could buy time instead of buying expensive machinery.

It's worse than I've described so far, though, because it wasn't just that the grinder stopped working all by itself.  Oh, no.  It's that I broke it.    I'd decided it was too dirty, and so I cleaned it with baking soda and toothbrushes and scrubbers, and then I rinsed it off under a running faucet.  And the water bath was just too much.  Cleaning had been over-kill, literally.

How miserably embarrassing.

My husband was nice enough not to actively blame me, even though we really were both in that tense let's-not-panic mode that could easily have led to finger-pointing.  But of course I knew this was all my fault.  So we came up with a plan, of sorts.
Stage 1: We found pre-ground coffee on our shelves, enough to last us a few days. Phew!
Stage 2: I got out the screwdriver and took the contraption apart in hopes of . . . what?  A coffee miracle?  I wasn't sure.
Stage 3: I immersed the dis-assembled coffee grinder in a bag of rice. I figured, if this works for some cell phones, maybe it works for coffee grinders, too.
The next morning I woke up, went for my usual Monday morning run, and then waited for my husband to leave the house so that if my "repair" didn't work, at least I could fail without an audience.  I shook the rice out of the grinder area, reassembled the grinder and . . .

Yay!   Grounds for Celebration!
A clean AND functional grinder!  yay!


  1. Marvelous! Just this morning I repaired a window fan; the blade had fallen off the spindle. I unscrewed the cover, pushed the blade back on, replaced the cover and we had a working exhaust fan in the bathroom again. Keep up the good work!

  2. DH has been having fun with solder recently. His headphones broke, so he cut out the bad part, soldered the wires back together, and covered them with Sugru.

    Of course, you have to have all of those items on hand already or it costs a lot more to fix a pair of headphones than to just buy a new pair.