Miller Time
A Tale of Two Refrigerators
By Grady Miller
Dec 23, 2007 - 4:37:07 PM

Moving to a small cottage in Hollywood, or as I prefer to call it, East West Hollywood, has created a few wrinkles.  With the place I inherited a side-by-side mammoth Frigidaire with space for 24 cubic feet of foodstuffs.  However you look at it, that's a lot of refrigerator when your kitchen is 15 cubic feet.

I believed there was a home for this fine specimen of food-storage equipment and purchased a modestly sized refrigerator to actually use.  Of course it meant the old refrigerator now took half of the kitchen and blocked the back door.

I turned to Craig's list, and in just a couple days I received a call from a certain Sheila who needed a fridge pronto.  The price was right, and we arranged a pick-up for Sunday morning.  The fellow came at the appointed hour, after picking up a headboard in the Valley. Parking was at a premium, and he ended up with his oversize pick-up on a side street.

Sheila wasn't with him, I noted.  "Even if she was, she would be much good," homeboy groused.

I quickly sized up that Sheila was not very muscular but persuasive when getting friends with pick-ups to move refrigerators.

Once we got inside the kitchen, he said, "How're we gonna get that thing out?"

I knew it was big, boxcar-big, and with foresight I had loosened the bolts to the doors.

In an abortive first attempt to get it out of the house, we pushed it toward the back door.  It soon became apparent that the location of the stove would not permit this exit strategy.

"How did they get it in here?" Archie asked.  "Don’t tell me they built the house around it."

We then concentrated our efforts on getting it through the door to the living room.  Thankfully, I had a tape measure handy and ascertained that, after removal of the twin doors, it would fit through the door to the living room and out the front door.  Just barely.

I got busy removing bolts off the top, and the right door slid off.  However, the left was umbilically attached by a water hose, and wouldn't come off.  We pushed the refrigerator back to the center of the kitchen, and Archie then lowered the one toward me, and lifted it from the bottom so we were both carrying it, meanwhile the door attached to the water hose was sort of folded on top.

Archie heaving from the kitchen and me ho-ing from the living room, we carried the thing gingerly so as not to shift the door balanced on top.  We were making headway, when two metal fittings at the bottom of the refrigerator butted up against the door frame.  Geeze.

It's the kind of stuff you can't rehearse for.   Homeboy made a call to a friend on his cell, "I'm gonna be longer here than expected.  This is the moving job from hell."

I got busy with the wrench and eased off the bolts, breathing easier as each one loosened off.   As I got the last bolt off, after some stubbornness, I called triumphantly to Archie: "I did it.  I've got the fittings off!"

I looked out into the living room.  Emptiness.  I looked in the courtyard walkway.  No Archie.  His oversize white pick-up wasn't on La Mirada, either.  He'd bailed. 

Not only had he bailed, he'd left a 24 cubic foot refrigerator on it's side, wedged in the only portal between my living room and kitchen.  To get to the kitchen I had to walk outside and around the perimeter of the house, or take a step ladder and tiptoe over the top.

        Wait, I thought, who needs leg lifts and a gym membership.  Have a refrigerator between your living room and kitchen.  It's a great way to get the legs lithe and limber.  What's more, it serves as a modern objet d'art and doubles as a dining room table.  Also, my daughter can tap-dance on it.  At first, it was upsetting to have the white enormity there on its side.  But now it's kind of grown on me.  This Christmas I've made peace with the Frigidaire. 

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