OK, for anyone out there who still thinks I’m smart, despite my regular protests to the contrary, here’s something that’s certain to clear up any and all confusion on that topic.
Herself bounds in from the garage the other day to announce that the overhead lights are not coming on when she pulls into her side of the two-car garage. Now, mind you, this is a brand-spankin’-new garage-door system, freshly installed back in May, and it does everything for you save park the car, open the driver’s-side door, and fetch in the groceries.
The hardware includes motion sensors and heat detectors, thermometers and clocks, the works. It’ll even text your smartphone to let you know if a garage door opens without your permission in case you’re worried about evildoers making off with your potting soil.
No more darkness, no more night.
But now the damn’ lights don’t come on. I don’t remember them ever coming on, truth be told, but I rarely drive, and when I do it’s always during daylight hours.
So I go out there and punch a few buttons on the control panel, like a curious hominid casually swatting a few rocks with a thigh bone, and nothing happens.
Next I start thumbing through the owner’s manual, which like most owner’s manuals is stupendously useless.
Finally I go online to find that the customer-support side of the company’s website is even more useless than the owner’s manual.
By this point I’m working up a pretty stout sense of having been poked in the peaches, and so I grab my smartphone and dial the handy 800 number, thinking I might ameliorate the swelling pain in my ass by sharing it with an unsuspecting technical-support representative.
Ho, ho, etc.
After 10 minutes on hold I’m at full boil. Steam is fountaining out of my ears. Herself has retreated to her office with an adult beverage, and the other critters have all scrambled to safety under various large pieces of furniture.
“Fuck this shit!” I announce to the nobody who is listening, hang up, grab a flashlight, and march back out into the now-totally-dark garage to see if I can break something.
Both cars are parked inside, naturally, it being nighttime, so I open the passenger door in my Subaru and use the rocker panel as an impromptu stepladder in order to get a closer look at my garage-door opener.
Neither the owner’s manual nor the customer-support site tells you how to crack the door-opener’s case to inspect its innards for bum sockets or failed logic boards, and I don’t see any screws to unscrew or clips to unclip, so I’m looking around for a fucking thigh bone or a goddamn rock with which to get prehistoric on the sonofabitch when through the ventilation slots I spot … what appears to be a light socket with no bulb in it.
Ditto for the other side.
And for the two sockets on the other opener.
Four 60-watt bulbs later the garage lights come on, just like when you open the door to a Samsung refrigerator and it catches fire.
Now repeat after me: I will never be smart.