Slaying the dragon

When something goes wrong or life does not fit into the neat pattern that I like, I saddle up my trusty steed Entropy and gallop off into the nearest forest, where I slay the first dragon that I see (it would be best to slay the dragon of chaos, but he is always distant). It doesn’t necessarily resolve the offending problem, but it does make me feel better.

After I have returned and taken off my armour, I then focus on the problem at hand. In this case a niggling little problem, very trivial. Our new TV in the bedroom and the new electronic box require extra electrical plugs. The problem is that the plug on the TV has a hard plastic connection from the electrical cable that makes the direction of the prongs at right angles to the cable. There is an electrical socket conveniently at the back of the chest of drawers, but while plugs with soft or linear connections go into it, the TV plug will not, there is not enough clearance. So I used a multi-point adaptor plugged in, but this is especially a problem since the end of the TV plug forces the whole adapter upwards and causes a bad connection and sometimes a short and everything goes off. What a miserable trivial problem.

There are several ways to fix this problem, one is cutting off the TV plug and replacing it with another convenient one. But, that is too easy and also is somewhat destructive (remember the handyman’s oath, first do no harm). Another is to use a multi-point extension cord. But, unfortunately the exension cord that I have, with four sockets, also has an identical hard plastic connector which is at right angles to the prongs, so that doesn’t go in and the problem remains. After studying the problem for a short time (I have been known to exaggerate) and after sleeping on it, I came up with an ideal solution. First, I turned off the electricity to that room and I checked by making sure the light plugged into that socket went out (this part is best done in the absence of the wife). Then I unscrewed the cover off the wall socket, unscrewed the two side screws that tighten the socket into its hole, and then turned the socket manually upside down! Then I simply retightened the side screws and replaced the cover and viola! (is that Spanish?) I could then plug the extension cord (or the TV plug) into the socket and then attach the four items (TV, box, light, fan) into the extension cord. When I turned the electricity back on everything worked fine. Problem solved! Who says that a bit of collateral damage isn’t good for the system.

This could have been an entry in my putative book “Husbandry” where everything practical would be explained.


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