Sunday, January 27, 2008

Whatever you do, Penfold... Don't say 'rock'!

Today was a tidying-up-loose-ends kind of day, a time for dispatching overdue projects.

First came the orange cake that I had meant to bake for Jól.  Instead of all-purpose wheat flour I substituted a 50/50 mixture of rice flour and tapioca flour to make the cake gluten-free. (Oh, and a quarter-teaspoon of xanthan gum to make it all stick together, too.)

Then... (cue ominous music) ...I tackled The Fishtank.

Among my housemates are Algernon the Chinese algae eater, two albino corydoras, and five black-skirt tetras all peacefully coexisting in a 20 gallon aquarium. About once a month I give the tank a partial water change, vacuum the gravel on the bottom, and scrub down the inside of the glass. Normally it takes about an hour to do that and get the new filter materials installed, the plants pruned, the new water dechlorinated, and the system switched back on.

Today, when I turned the electricity back on, the power filter just sat there.

I fussed with it. *poke poke*
And fussed with it some more. *click* *prime prime prime*
And yet again. *adjust* *click*

And contemplated praying to the Power Filter Gods, but they had the day off.

So, out came the filter, and I took it back to the kitchen sink for another look.

Then, finally, I saw The Rock. A tiny, tiny pebble stuck deep down in the almost-as-tiny impeller mechanism, preventing the rotor from spinning properly.

*SHAKE* *clunk*
*reinstall* *click* *whirrrrr*

I think this one is covered under my mandate as the Goddess of Random Equipment Malfunctions. (reads fine print on her contract while enjoying a slice of that wonderful orange cake)

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