I wasn't the least bit surprised this morning when I ambled into the garage to start the snowblower for the first time this season. I poured in some year-old gas, pushed the primer button a few times and pulled the cord -- about 20 times.
Before I even walked out the door, I said to my wife, "Wanna take bets on whether the snowblower starts?" She politely declined.
As I spent the next hour shoveling like a sucker, I pondered the reasons the old Toro failed me in my time of need:
- I didn't completely empty the tank last spring.
- I didn't so much as check the spark plugs.
- I didn't buy new gas for the season.
- I didn't try to start it before my neighborhood got hit with a bunch of snow.
So I totally had it coming. But wait, I have an excuse!
I actually have three, yes three, snowblowers in my garage. My father-in-law gave them to me a few years ago: one good one, one crappy one and one for parts.
The "good" one worked perfectly when he demonstrated it to me. Then, the day I fired it up for the first time, it worked for about 30 seconds, then died. And never started again. The most impressive thing I could get it to do was to shoot a blue flame out the side (yes, I know it's probably a carburetor issue).
I even changed the spark plug, which turned into an empowering but useless venture. Finally, I stuffed the "good" snowblower into the corner and began using the crappy one.
The crappy one has been fickle but generally useful. It seems to start when it feels like it, and usually refuses to work during heavy snowstorms.
That's why, last Saturday, I finally took the "good" snowblower to Ace Hardware to get it fixed.
And, like the rest of Milwaukee, I'll probably wait till July to have it ready.
So no, I wasn't surprised when the crappy snowblower didn't start, and I admit that it's probably my fault. But somehow that didn't make me feel any better during my morning shoveling.
Next call: Ace, to get an update on that repair ...
NinaMarie.....if that is your photo on your page...you should have the guys lining up to shovel your walk for you.....very cute....
That's pretty funny. I don't have a snow-blower, but I did spy an 80lb bag of salt that the old tenants left in my garage. I'm about to head out there and unleash that baby all over my driveway, hoping it melts something.
I too have a Simplicity older than every other powered peice of equipment in my garage. Heavy, metal, and dangerous in every sense. I aso have a "Snow Pup" given by my father-in-law for my wife to use if needed. Let's face it the older one is to heavy even for me to use if it is slippery. Yet the snow pup sat there like an old dog, didn't even start. My Simplicity started like a charm and my only worry is when I need to stick the broom handle down the shoot to unclog it.
It is the envy of the block for it's massive size and ability to do even the largest piles left by the city in front of my driveway.
TosaJimBob--my Simplicity snowblower (37) is older than I am (34). It also still works like a champ.
5 comments about this article.
Post your comment/review now
Disclaimer: Please note that Facebook comments are posted through Facebook and cannot be approved, edited or declined by OnMilwaukee.com. The opinions expressed in Facebook comments do not necessarily reflect those of OnMilwaukee.com or its staff.
Recent Articles & Blogs by Andy Tarnoff
Published Jan. 6, 2015
I remember back in college, I came to the realization that several different versions existed of me. Those different versions of me continue to this day, but nowhere are they more pronounced than on social media. I embraced Twitter long before Facebook and Instagram, but now active on all three, you'll experience a totally different Andy Tarnoff if you only look in one place.
Published Dec. 30, 2014
These year-end lists are always fun to write, because they are so open-ended. So bear with me if I skip the regular categories and think outside the box a little for this one.
Published Dec. 29, 2014
As you can imagine, it's not easy being a four-season bike shop in a state where it's possible to see snow on the ground for eight months out of the year. But Steve Whitford, co-owner of South Shore Cyclery in Cudahy, says he knows no other way.
Published Dec. 22, 2014
I remember vividly how hard school was. Not just the homework, but the routine of waking up early, navigating its social intricacies. Granted, my daughter is only in K5, but still, she works hard - so I like to reward her with plenty of family fun when seasonal school vacations come around.
Published Dec. 17, 2014
Yesterday, I walked around Packard Avenue in Cudahy for the first time in a long time. I mean, I drive through or around Cudahy all the time, but yesterday was different. I stopped to smell the roses. Every real Milwaukeeans should pay a visit to downtown Cudahy every now and then. It's like a window into our past, and it's still alive and kicking today.
Published Dec. 11, 2014
We all had a good laugh when the word spilled that Scott Walker substituted "Molotov" for "Mazel Tov" in his Hanukkah letter to Frank Gimbel. But you know that Gov. Walker didn't write that letter, right? He didn't even sign it.
Published Dec. 2, 2014
Black Friday and Cyber Monday were good fun, but Giving Tuesday is all about giving back to our community. It's a relatively new concept, but several Milwaukee nonprofits participate, including Discovery World, UPAF and Pathfinders. One local organization, Penfield Children's Center, is making Giving Tuesday work through crowdsourcing.
Published Dec. 1, 2014
I'm going to beat the Milwaukee winter. I will not be cold again. I will laugh in the face of Snowmageddon. I will be toasty warm when the temperatures drop well below zero. Here's how.
Published Nov. 18, 2014
Take it for what its worth, but Playboy Magazine has Blue's Egg as one of its 101 best breakfasts in America (don't worry, the link is reasonably safe for work). The restaurant at 317 N. 76th St. came in 21st place out of 23 Midwest selections, just behind Mickie's Dairy Bar in Madison.
Published Nov. 11, 2014
Can you imagine how social media would've melted down exactly 101 years ago? Nov. 11, 2013 was the end of the "Big Blow," the "Freshwater Fury" or the "White Hurricane," a hurricane-force blizzard that killed more than 250 people and and destroyed 19 ships.