Roda Grubb

Have you ever wanted to get rid of something but it just didn’t seem likely that would ever happen? That’s the dilemma I had when our old Sears Coldspot freezer gave up the ghost on us. It had given us a good run, however, since we bought it used for $25 twelve years ago.

I had smelled something unusual in the garage and thought the odor was coming from a few grapefruit sitting in a box on the garage floor. Every time I went into the garage I would smell this sickening sweet smell and kept reminding hubby that he really did need to get rid of those smelly ole grapefruit. Returning home from a weekend retreat, after reminding hubby while I was gone to please dispose of those grapefruit, I was glad to know when I returned that the deed would be done.

Fully expecting the garage now would emit a fresh odor, I was now in for a surprise. It still reeked of that sickening sweet, rancid smell. Looking around and sniffing, no culprit could be found.

A few weeks later some friends came over to watch basketball. One headed to the freezer to put in her ice cream. The next thing I knew she was standing before us, her hand moving quickly across her face, fanning frantically. I looked curiously at her, wondering what in the world she was doing still gripping her half gallon of ice cream and fanning herself.

“Have you looked into your freezer lately?” she inquired.

“No,” I innocently replied.

“Well, it’s not working,” she said, rapidly fanning herself, trying to blow away some mysterious, invisible attacker.

Reluctantly I headed for the garage. Did hubby follow? Oh, no, the game was too important. Opening the door to the freezer I reeled backwards as the aroma of rotting buffalo slammed me in the face. All the white ice that had been clinging to the walls and top of the freezer had melted and gathered at the bottom, becoming a soup of a disgusting rancid, black liquid swirling just below the bags of nuts that had been in there since 1995.

It was dead, there was no doubt about that. Deader than a doornail. Deader than a gnat swatted by an elephant’s tail. Yep, we had a problem and hubby didn’t seem to care!

I drug out a heavy duty lawn bag, and dispensed with all the rotting food within our defunct machine. Gone was the promise of a tender buffalo roast, a bit of vegetable soup or sugar free candy. Gone were the possibilities of making life easier by eating the frozen meals that had waited expectantly for us to choose them.

Now it was all just a mess of icky, fuzzy globs of dreams lost. Into the black bag it all went - all except those bags and bags of nuts. Surely, they couldn’t be rancid too!

My next step would be to clean up the mess - wipe down the walls of the freezer and clean out that malodorous soup. Well, I figured, it had waited this long, it could wait a few more days. Four days later I again arrived at the door of the turquoise box, spots of black mold adorning it. Armed with a plastic glove, a bucket and an empty plastic margarine container, I attacked. Now, however, I found on top of the black soup was a repulsive, repugnant grey colored moldy looking mass, as if coating the uneatable broth with some kind of topping!

Holding my breath and delicately scooping with my handy, dandy margarine container, I scooped and scooped until I had it all scooped out. The foul glob was too nasty to dump down a drain or pour out in the yard so I walked to the back of the subdivision and poured it out on the other side of the fence behind the yard of a yet to be built home. Satisfied I had done a good deed in not putting the disgusting stuff in our sewer system, I went back to finish cleaning out the rest of the freezer. And yes, the nuts went in the garbage too.

The next step was trying to dispose of the dead beast. It was a big, heavy upright box, not easily moved. Foolishly thinking it would be a matter of calling one or two appliance repair persons to find the best way to extricate our home from this monster I spent the next few weeks calling and waiting for replies. I even thought I had hit the jackpot when I found good ole “Tony” who told me he was going to pick it up that day, then the next day, then the next day. It finally dawned upon me that “Tony” wasn’t going to be picking anything up!

One day I decided this was the day to solve the problem. I hit the phone book again, calling every appliance repair, junk yard dealer and metal recycle business in the book. The city had told me they would pick it up on their monthly large item run but I had to have the door and Freon removed and the freezer tagged with a notice that the Freon had indeed been disposed of. I found two repair persons that would do that for $69.95 or $87, plus tax, of course.

At long last I found Edinburg Iron and Metal, that glorious company who answered most of my prayers. If I could get my monster there, they would gladly accept it, warts and all! They would deal with the Freon and if my monster weighed in at 250 pounds or more, they would actually pay me for it!

Calling our trusty Friend with Truck, he gladly accepted the request. All I would have to do is call on the chosen day and remind him of his accepted task and he would gladly comply. Ah, yes, the end was in sight. At last, the old geezer would be gone!

Disposal day arose all bright and sunny. No weather would be stopping Freezer Eradication Day! The reminder call was made and I eagerly awaited the removal of this dead bulk from its prominent spot in the garage. Hubby returned home with the Friend with Truck and another friend and promptly assumed the roll of sidewalk supervisor. In a matter of minutes it was loaded and Friend with Truck and I were on our way.

He drove carefully so as not to lose the magnificent beast lying on its side on the truck bed. He knew exactly where we were going and in a short time we were on the scales being weighed in and directed to the back junk yard.

Friend with Truck and the Man from the Crane shoved and pushed and shortly, old geezer was standing at the base of the mountain of metal, his mold spotted, turquoise blue coat standing out against the black, grey and rust of the gigantic pile of worn out steel.

It occurred to me as I looked back at old geezer that he had been a good and faithful servant in his time and a bit of melancholy washed over me. “Thank you, old friend! You did a great job and served us well!” I whispered, hoping he would hear. It had taken a few months but the job was done. I guess the lesson learned here is: If you’re determined and set your mind to your task, anything is possible here in the Valley! Oh, yes, by the way, the old geezer brought me $5, payment for a job well done!