Monday, October 6, 2008


We shopped for a new dishwasher this weekend. I don't know the precise reasons, but our dishwashers, bought at the scratch and dent store, keep dying. It's either the drain or us or the washers, but we decided to buy a better quality dishwasher and use a warranty this time. We'll see. I don't know if it's going to save water in the long run over hand washing, although it probably depends on who is hand washing, but it should save my sanity. There's a lot of dishes generated here.

While shopping, I had my usual shopping meltdown. I just hate shopping, unless it's grocery shopping. Love that; hate clothes or appliance or shoes or car or bicycle or building materials (although I enjoy noodling around Urban Ore) shopping. I'm like a toddler, needing to be jollied along and provided with snacks. So I hung out and talked through the first round of dishwasher comparison, and then sat down.

Eric asked about it, and I said, "Well, if I can't have what I want, it doesn't matter what I get." That sparked an interesting discussion.

And this morning, on my first run in a week, since I got the cold, I was thinking about it again. Is this really how I make decisions? What does this mean?

As far as the dishwasher goes, short of having Someone Else do the dishes, I'd rather have an industrial dishwasher. Seems appropriate for our house and the kind of cooking I do. Can't have that. Then there's really expensive dishwashers. Well, can't have that, or won't spend the money on that. So when it comes to the ones we can afford, the differences between them seem unimportant. I don't really care about rack layout or adjustability. Just buy one -- don't care about color, button placement, etc. Just want something to wash dishes.

But does this mean that I follow this "If I can't have what I want, I'm taking my marbles and going home" philosophy elsewhere? Well, since I was having this mental process while running only two and a half miles or so, I thought probably not. I want to be able to run and run and run without effort, but I also wanted to get over the nasty cold. So I didn't run. And as I dressed this morning, I realized that I wasn't going to get the run I wanted. But it would be too easy to just say, "Well, can't have what I want, so I won't run." And that leads to not needing to buy new Levis that fit, and maybe not having the kind of physical life I want in the long run.

One data point against.

And I want a lush garden, but I've neglected it for a couple of years. Dig, or pout? I'm choosing dig now. Okay, another data point. Generally I think of myself as somewhat impatient but in big things able to take a more geological time perspective. I can wait, and see what will be, while making tiny choices along the way.

But it's there, inside my head, and I'm looking for it now. Maybe it really was just low blood sugar shopping. And the run was doable, while not a thing of beauty, but a week off doesn't mean quitting, and not caring what dishwasher we get doesn't mean a complete character meltdown.

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