Wednesday, December 06, 2023


I call it our small appliance fiasco.  My years old Black and Decker one cup coffee maker had been acting up as of late and I began making some disparaging remarks about it.  Noticing my bluster, Kelly said she saw in a recent Canadian Tire Store flyer that they had Keurig one-cup coffee makers on sale.  It was the kind that used coffee pods and could also be used to make coffee the standard way using bagged coffee.  I thought to myself, maybe it was about time to get myself up to speed with this newer pod way of making coffee.  Well, newer to me that is.  Also, in that same Canadian Tire Flyer Kelly noticed they had Cuisinart toaster ovens on sale.  We've heard lots of good things about toaster ovens as of late and it was something we had talked about a few times before over the last half dozen years.  So, one morning last week it was off to the Canadian Tire Store in Goderich we went.  As per usual, Kelly went in to make the purchase while Pheebs and I waited in the car watching for her to come out whereupon we swoop in right up to the door and load things up.  A store employee behind Kelly had the Keurig in a shopping cart with the Cusinart atop the cart.  Hmmmm, I thought, that Cusinart looks kinda big.  With our haul labouriously loaded into the car it was off for home we went.  I don't know how it happened but when I opened the hatch in our driveway it sure looked to me like that Cusinart had grown.  Wait a minute, I thought it was a toaster oven we bought and not a refrigerator.  No matter, I hoisted the big box out and with sore hip and all made my way up the steps and lumbered into the house with it.  I  plopped the box onto the kitchen counter where we had planned to put it.  I noticed right away it was big enough to totally block the toaster, my coffee maker, and our micro-wave oven.  'Oh-Oh' Houston, we have a problem!!  As soon as Kelly came in she confirmed the problem and we knew immediately we had made a big mistake by not paying attention to the counter-top measurements and the toaster oven's measurements.  We never even opened the box.  Next came the Keurig one-cup coffee maker.  I carefully opened the box and removed our next mistake.  It was a color of green that almost made turned my stomach on end.  Not a good start.  Well, hey I thought, I've got some paint in the shed, scratch that idea.  But that was only strike one against the Keurig.  It was at this point that Kelly took over and tried to figure out how it works.  Strike two.  We also noticed it seemed kind of cheaply built.  Strike three your out and the game was over.  Back into the box it went  and back to the Canadian Tire Store we went the next morning with our returns.  Not giving up on a one cup coffee maker, Kelly next decided on a Nespresso machine and this time coming out the Canadian Tire Store door she wasn't accompanied by an employee with a shopping cart.  In fact, she carried it to the car by a little suitcase like handle on top.  Home again, I opened the Subaru's hatch and noticed the box looked a little worn.  It wasn't until a few minutes later in the house when I went to open the box that I quickly concluded this box had obviously shaken loose in the hold of an old tramp steamer plowing through heavy storm tossed seas around Africa's Cape of Good Hope.  Despite that, I opened the tattered looking box and set it on the kitchen counter.  There were a couple of things I didn't like about it right off the bat but thought I'd let Kelly wrestle with figuring out how it worked.  Minutes later while comforabley enscounced in my sunroom recliner, I thought somebody had started up an old Massey-Ferguson tractor in the direction of our kitchen.  A bit exaggerated on my part of course but I guess I didn't realize those types of pod machines have a motor or something in them to make the coffee.  Now, noise and me don't get along!!  Not even a little bit, so needless to say I am still contentedley brewing coffee in my years old blustery Black and Decker one cup coffee maker:))

I stepped out on our back deck late Tuesday night and looked skywards in hopes of seeing a star or two.  I did, so I knew we might have some sunshine this morning.  We did, and with that, Pheebs and I were soon out the door and headed east into the countryside for a country road Jeep cruise.  Even managed a few pics with some blue sky in them.

I just finished my latest book called, The Adventures of Joey by Ron Anderson.  I liked this simply written true story about a young boy being growing up on a farm back in the 30s and early 40s.  What made this book especially interesting for me is the fact it takes place in Southern Ontario in and around the towns of  Hagersville, Waterford, Villa Nova, and Simcoe.  Although this fellow was about 10 years older than me at the time of this story, there were so many, many, things he mentioned about his childhood and the way things were back then that I could identify with him.  For me in the 50's it was a one-room schoolhouse, living on a farm, in a small village, walking a mile to school and back carrying a lunch pail, girls, cars, and hanging out with other kids, just to name a few.  This book had me chuckling and brought back memories of things I had completely forgotten about.  My next book is 'Canadian History Stories' by Ahoy Publications......I bailed out on two other books.  'The Alien Inquiry' by Steven D. McIntire bogged me down and I just couldn't seem to plow through it.  In the book, 'The Place Between Here and There' by Stephen Weber I was doing okay until the author brought in a hard-nosed religious viewpoint. I don't have any patience or tolerance for people who proclaim, "Their particular religious way is the only way and everybody else is wrong!!!!"  I did not finish the book. 

Al's Music Box:)) The Fool On The Hill   is a song by the English rock band the Beatles from their 1967 EP and album Magical Mystery Tour. It was written and sung by Paul McCartney and credited to the Lennon-McCartney partnership. According to McCartney, the song possibly relates to a character such as Maharishi Mahesh Yogi, the Beatles' meditation teacher: I think I was writing about someone like Maharishi. His detractors called him a fool. Because of his giggle, he wasn't taken too seriously. It was this idea of a fool on the hill, a guru in a cave, I was attracted to ... I was sitting at the piano at my father's house in Liverpool hitting a D 6th chord, and I made up "Fool on the Hill".  McCartney played the song for John Lennon during a writing session for "With a Little Help from My Friends" in March 1967.  At this point, McCartney had the melody but the lyrics remained incomplete until September. Lennon told him to write it down; McCartney said he did not need to, because he was sure he would not forget it. In his 1980 interview with Playboy magazine, Lennon said, "Now that's Paul. Another good lyric. Shows he's capable of writing complete songs."

GROANER'S CORNER:(( For Christmas, I would like an oil change, a utility bill paid, a gift card for groceries, my vehicle cleaned, four new tires, a chocolate milkshake, and gas money. 

One thing no one ever talks about when it comes to being an older adult is how much time we devote to keeping a cardboard box because it is, you know, a really good box.

I can't believe I forgot to go to the gym today. That's seven years in a row now.

I'm in an abusive relationship with the cost of living!!

I like to make lists. I also like to leave them lying on the kitchen counter, and then guess what's on the list when I am at the store.

I just read a book about marriage that says treat your wife like you treated her on your first date. So tonight after dinner I'm dropping her off at her parent's house.




  1. The humorous way you wrote about the appliances disasters had me laughing as much as your groaners corner did,
    Thanks 😊 Mary

  2. I like that spot of turquoise in your blue sky today. Thanks, Al.

  3. I suggest the black Bunn coffee maker. Not sure of the model but it is simple, no noise and around $110 USD. I measure out grounds and pour in exactly two cups of water from the cup I drink to get the right amount. Might be an option. I have used this model for over 20 years. One the first one wore out Bunn sent me a new one around ten years after I bought it.

  4. I've been around the Keurigs and was never thrilled. I like the cheap Mr. Coffee's. And mine last at least 10 years. (I never use the keep warm setting though, just turn it off and warm coffee in the microwave, which I hear from coffee purists is the worst ever thing to do.) And my toaster oven was a cheap Black and Decker and small and just kind of started being a bit slow on the heating, so I got a new Presto or something. The cheap ones lasts just as long as the pricey ones (well, so far) and I use them a lot, as I am cooking only for one. A friend got a huge Cusinart as a gift, and it works well, but sure does take up a lot of room!!

  5. Geez I wrote a lot. Well, fascinating topic I guess. haha

  6. Nespresso is a very niche market coffee. If you have never tried it, you may not really like it and they don't easily accomodate an insert to use your own coffee. I thought I really wanted one and got one, but eventually had to admit it wasn't my bag, and left it to my husband. I do own the Keurig and was able to purchase an insert on Amazon which allowed me to get away from the pods. Pods are expensive, especially Nespresso and generally a pain. Just my two cents.