If you’re a current subscriber, log in below. If you would like to subscribe, please click the subscribe tab above.
Username and Password Help
Water heater for insomniacs
If insomnia strikes, look online to learn how to make an electric water heater, whether you need one or not.
Yes, there are YouTubes for DIY water heaters – just like for everything else. I watched one but didn’t turn up the volume, not wanting to wake my non-insomniac husband. I ended up thinking there’s much to be said for third-world knowhow.
Yes again, I simply assumed as I watched the video that it was created in a country where people have to know how to make do and regularly do so. That’s my definition of a third-word country. Which one? Who knows? All I could see was the skin color of the craftsman – golden tan.
A circa-two-foot two-by-two or a similar piece of wood, a couple of nails, some coiled nichrome wire, some insulated copper wiring, a bucket of water. The nichrome wire in the video looked like an old screen door spring. I know it was nichrome because it looked like the stuff one of my high school classmates used in her nifty science project. (Yes, Barbara, I’m referring to that calorie-measuring device.)
It was a sad-looking piece of wood, broken on one end. Why spend money on the wood when you’ve still got to buy the nichrome? The insulated wire looked like it had been scrounged from somewhere. It was all blue.
When your wires are all the same color, you don’t have to worry about which colors signify ground, neutral and positive. Or, if you’re the worrying kind, it’s time to worry.
Tip: If you have electrical tape in various colors, it comes in handy for coding wires correctly, just in case you want to fulfill your need for some semblance of orderliness.
Need? It’s my theory that deep in our psyches we all would like to be up to code. When I worked at the mental hospital, two different patients had the delusion that they were safety officers. Karl Jung wrote about shared hallucinations. Maybe delusions too. As I recall, he came up with a theory as to why drunk humans universally see elephants. (Some pink, some not.) Shared delusions, shared hallucinations. It’s all quite fascinating.
Back to the handy water heater.
The most impressive item in the YouTube was the tool used for everything – a pair of pliers that doubled as a hammer for those two nails. Poor guy probably doesn’t have a hammer, and I’m guessing he found those hefty pliers lying in the road when he was riding his bicycle.
Why would I think that? Ask anyone who rides a bicycle, and they’ll tell you the best tools fall off work trucks. Ask me.
Some of the snobbier sorts who commented on the water heater video told him to get a hammer, not to mention a nicer piece of wood.
Such mockers lack self-esteem. Criticizing the water heater guy boosts their egos. Unfazed, he’s no doubt moved on to his next make-do project.
I do hope he finds a hammer.