I did it again and I don’t know why.
As I left the garage, I instinctively flipped the light switch.
Like I said, I don’t know why I did it. All I know is that nothing good can come of it. One would think that a light switch would control lights but ours doesn’t.
We have several such switches in our house. Each a mystery.
We have no idea what the one in the garage does but we are sure it does something. The one in the entryway does something too – but we are not sure why it does the things it does. Not so the one in the kitchen. That one is completely predictable – sometimes.
This mystery began about a year ago when lights suddenly stopped working and dead outlets just as suddenly sprung to life. The appliances got in on the action too – blinking in and out of consciousness – all because some switch somewhere had been flipped.
We suspect much of this was caused by the crazy old handyman who wired our place years before we bought it. We have tried to undo his chaos by taking careful notes and systematically rewiring his obvious errors but all we got for the effort was more riddles in our walls.
In a rational world, one might simply disconnect the mystery switches. We did that – but over the normal course of flipping lights on and off, we slowly and surely shut down our household. To save ourselves we reconnected them.
Over the years, we have called several local electricians but once they realized who we were they never called back. We tried hiring professionals from out of the area only to watch them speed away after confronting our beehive of wires, so after I set off a fresh round of chaos by flipping the garage light switch, I called my buddy Stan.
He can fix anything.
He poked around a bit then sighed that heavy sigh of his and said, “I don’t do magic.”
“Too complex for you, huh?”
“Not at all,” he said, “when something is complex, you know there is an explanation for what you don’t know. When magic is involved, you know the explanation is beyond reason.”
“And what you have is beyond even that.”
“What should I do?” I asked.
“Have you tried superstition?”
“Yes,” I told him.
“Try harder,” he said.
Just then my dog barked.
Scooter has never made the connection between the food in his dish and my daily trips to fill it. He blames his dish for being empty and bats it about his kennel as punishment.
So we went to the shed to take care of Scooter.
“You need to get him a feeder,” Stan said, “a big one, and a water dish big enough so he cannot and spill it. If you do that, I predict the dark lord of electricity will reward you.”
“Trust magic,” he said.
So I did – and Stan was right, it worked.
As soon as I got Scooter his new water dish, the switch in the garage became utterly reliable, the one in the entryway became downright dependable and the kitchen light performed predictably.
I called Stan.
“What the heck?” I said and described what happened.
“I figured so,” he said, “when Scooter knocks over his water dish, he grounds out an outlet and since your supply is routed through the shed, it scrambles your grid. You need to get that line and the breaker box replaced.”