Sunday, August 8, 2010

Up's and Down's: How to Fix a Garage Door in Less Than One Year

For over a year our garage door has not worked. You know, the big overhead door that opens allowing one to pull the car into the garage and park. I guess technically it worked. I mean, it opened. But only manually. Man-u-ally. Meaning "Man, you really have to put forth some physical effort to make this thing work." And you all know how I feel about physical effort.

Throughout my entire pregnancy, throughout the entire winter, throughout all kinds of terrible weather, I had to pull in the driveway, put the car in park, get out of the car, walk to the garage, lean down, heft the sucker up (sucker being the big overhead garage door), walk back to the car, get back into the car, put the car in drive, drive forward, and park. You see how utterly exhausting that can be. Especially being forced to do it day in and day out, several times a day.

I come from the old school where the Man should naturally possess knowledge as to (1) why the door isn't opening when I click the little button on the remote and (2) how to fix it. Note: it is assumed that the Man  also possesses the self discipline and determination to "make it happen" and fix the darn thing. Note #2: Big V did not come from the old school.

Me: Why doesn't the door work?

Big V: I don't know.

Me: Can you fix it?

Big V: I don't know.

Me: Can you try?

Big V: I don't know.

Me: Is there someone else who can fix it?

Big V: I don't know.

And so it was that more than 365 days passed where the overhead garage door could only be opened or closed manually. Arguments ensued.

Me: What are you doing?!

Big V: We're going to the store - you said we're going to the store!

Me: We can't just leave - pull back in the driveway!

Big V: Why? What's wrong?

Me: The garage door is still open.

Big V: We're running to the store. We'll be gone less than an hour.

Me: Less than an hour? Do you know what can happen in less than an hour? Criminals could steal the lawn mower and the grill and the quick-set pool we only used one summer because it's really not very quick to put up at all! And they could hide in the garage and jump out and stab us with knives and then we'll bleed out and die. And I don't want to die on the garage floor - no matter how many times you sweep it, it's still filthy!

Big V: You're overreacting.

Me: No I'm not. I don't want criminals in our garage. Pull back into the driveway... I'll shut the door - since you're too lazy.

Big V: I'm not lazy. It's just easier to leave it open so we can see the killers from the car before we get out. If you have to get out and open the garage door you're at a disadvantage because you're bent over and they could club you over the head before you even realized they were there.

Fast forward to this weekend when Joe Schmoe stopped by to chit-chat (read: have a few beers with Big V in our garage because he felt compelled to escape his own home life) and the two of them started planning Ultimate Garage Improvements, which included air conditioning and state of the art lighting. "You could start with getting the door to go up and down on command," I tossed out sarcastically.

Joe: The door doesn't open?

Me: No, we don't know what's wrong with it.

Big V: Yeah, I looked at it, and we're gonna have to get a professional in here. The guy we bought the house from put it in himself and had no clue what he was doing. It's all messed up.
Joe: Got the manual?

And that's how seven minutes later I had a door that opened and closed whenever I pushed the little button on the remote.


Becca said...

A functioning garage door is not negotiable in this house. It's like a water heater. Or oxygen.


AAAARRRRGGGGGHHHHH! I am TOTALLY feeling your pain on that one. I'm pissed for you! You had an infant! You practically live in the tundra! (Practically because I live in the tundra and you are 5 hours south of it) I will not even look at a house that does not have an attached garage with working garage door opener. We didn't have a dish washer until O was 4 months old. Almost killed me! But a garage door opener!? That's ... well, that's almost as bad as that dog. You are a good woman. Better than I.