Yesterday I planned to shampoo the family room carpet. It had not been cleaned in you don’t want to know how long. A year ago we were putting newborn grandbabies on sterile blankets to protect them from the floor. This year I needed a sterilizer to clean the floor from the spitting, scooting, toddling grandbabies.

Daughters used to inherit vacuum cleaners.  Don't tell me this machine is obsolete.

Daughters used to inherit vacuum cleaners. Don’t tell me this machine is obsolete.

The first step was to locate the shampooer– or hot water dirt extractor, to be precise. In my attempt to create an actual guest room, it had been relocated from a bedroom closet…where I always knew where it was and where it stayed wonderfully new looking. Somehow it ended up in one of the dusty dungeons of death in the depths of the man cave. Covered in a layer of sawdust.

And missing one little part.

A small plastic part of the return water receptacle. The part that creates the suction to pull the dirty water into the container.

After a fruitless search of logical places where I might have stashed it and total despair at the thought of entering the dusty dungeon of death, I did an internet search for replacement parts. I was fully aware that I would have to replace the entire return water receptacle in order to get a new little plastic thingy.

My search informed me that the plastic receptacles for my rug shampooer are obsolete. Obsolete! How can a plastic container become obsolete?

According to Dictionary.com, obsolete means “fallen into disuse.” Ok, I admit that I haven’t been using the rug cleaner much lately, but it was still in perfectly good working condition.

Another definition says, “effaced by wearing away.” It was not worn away. I lost it.

Here is where my rant takes off. “To make obsolete by replacing with something newer or better.” My shampooer parts are obsolete because the manufacturer just decided to stop making them. The manufacturer would prefer that I buy a whole new machine.

There is nothing wrong with the one I have! Well, except that it is missing this little obsolete part that happens to be crucial for the effective operation of the machine.

That made me fighting mad. I do not want to buy a whole new machine. Why do I have to replace a gently used ten year old rug cleaner while my husband is still “farming” with a 1952 tractor? But, ah, there lies my glimmer of hope. When battling planned obsolescence, there is no one better to turn to than a man-cave dweller. And a roll of duct tape.

It’s not pretty, but it worked.


Duct tape will never become obsolete.

Thank you, Man-cave Dweller!

Thank you, Man-cave Dweller!



3 thoughts on “Obsolete

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