I remember reading an article somewhere, long back, that was titled "Shhh, the refrigerator is listening...".
In my home, recently, it has been like, my household appliances have suddenly realised that they are living in Kerala...working thanklessly for the last few years!! Let's have some hartals, they decided... with the refrigerator leading the way. The freezer stopped working, one fine day (of course, then the day turned out to be one hell of a day). You know what is worse than runnning to your neighbour's with your half thawed chicken and fish (which is bad enough...they will now actually see what we eat 😱)? It is calling up that blasted toll-free number.
After umpteen warnings about recording your call (yes, you may and please do listen to it when you are doing your morning ablutions!##$) you get an exceedingly polite guy (with a strange accent); who then proceeds to verify everything from your address to year of purchase (as if your failing refrigerator isn't bad enough, he has to remind you that your memory is in an even worse shape). Then the guy wanted to know the model number. I politely informed him that I was at work and although I thought his instructions to stand the refrigerator upside down and read the model number was very clear and helpful, there was no way I could do it at that time of the day! After much cluck-clucking, he settled for a general description of the appliance and proceeded to register my complaint with a cheery and firm assurance that the service fellow will call me within 24 hours...Of course the service guy had other fish to fry (or other fridges to frisk) and my chicken continued to languish in the neighbour's freezer for a few more days. When that one finally got sorted, the washing machine displayed some sort of an epileptic fit, jumping around and then went into a coma with some wet clothes locked in (which, immediately, turned out to be the most indispensable piece of clothing in everyone's wardrobe!), followed by the microwave turning the heat off (or should I say, the heat on) and the oven bursting a gasket!
The husband, meanwhile, was blissfully unaffected by this mass mutiny since the only electrical gadget he was interested in, was working fine...the television (what else!). So all the other 'gadgetary problems' could be borne with helpful 'hmmms' and sympathetic 'shhhs' while channel surfing to catch up with what the Supreme Court said that day (Suddenly, our apex court is so proactive,if you don't avidly follow the news, you could be decadent by decades!!).
Soon, my phone's 'recently called list' resembled a veritable "toll free directory" with LG to Samsung to Onida ...
Anyway, eventually, all these got sorted and I heaved a sigh of relief and told my household help,"Ok, I think they have all had their sick leaves, so we should be fine now", only to get an SOS call from her the next day..."Asha chechi, none of the burners of the gas stove are lighting up..how do I cook?".
Ah, yes, I forgot that the gas hob was listening...😥