I have a love/hate relationship with a household appliance.
I blame it on a 1960’s salesman who might have caused the demise of my parents’ marriage.
The Kirby vacuum cleaner has been produced since 1934, and even today, can only be purchased from direct door to door sales.
My mother was a perfect target, a lonely, isolated stay-at-home mother of 6.
The lively demonstration went down while my father was at work.
She was sold.
The shiny silver machine with endless boxes of mostly useless attachments came at a price of hundreds of dollars, money the family could ill afford.
This was long before “buyers remorse” policies that would protect her, for at least a day or so, from an impulsive purchase.
Many days of arguments, blame, guilt, worry were to follow. But in the end, we lugged that monster machine over 3 floors of carpet; all 50 pounds of it, or so it seemed at the time.
It sucked. In so many memorable ways.
In my life, I’ve never found a vacuum cleaner that I liked. I have threatened to tear up carpet and replace all of it with hardwood flooring.
It is an active threat. And it might be based on that Kirby.
I spotted one yesterday at a flea market. I didn’t stop to ask the price.