Yes, my toaster. Toaster No 2 to be exact. Toaster No 2 is almost identical to Toaster No 1. A few minor, but significant differences, distinguish him.
Meet Toaster No 1.
Well, an artist's impression of … or rather an app's impression of … Toaster No 1. You see, Toaster No 1 has been returned to his place of birth and been superseded by Toaster No 2. And, no, obviously they aren't my first-ever and second-ever toasters, but they are significant because I paid a H.E.A.P. of money for them. More than I would normally pay for a toaster. And, surprisingly, I expected them to work. And to work very well.
Sadly though, Toaster No 1 failed to perform. Toaster No 1 would best be referred to as Burner No 1. Yep, Burner. He refused to comply with the concept of toasting. Burning was his speciality.
He was handsome. I'll give him that. Looked spectacular, I thought. A great part of the reason why I bought him. I wanted a matching kettle and toaster with retro smiles and I found what I wanted ... I thought. Except that Toaster didn't want to play nicely.
Kettle, now she was … is … lovely. Boils my water beautifully. Looks good. Nice retro smile. All I wanted and need. She's still working magnificently nearly three years on.
Here she is. Isn't she gorgeous?
Who wouldn't love her?
So, with the demise, dismissal of Toaster/Burner No 1, our kitchen was blessed with Toaster No 2, courtesy of The Good Guys who willingly provided him to me as a replacement after my sad, but compelling story of Toaster/Burner No 1.
Here he is making friends with kettle. Just friends. Nothing more.
Make a sweet couple, don't they?
Look good. Nice retro smiles … but lurking behind Toaster No 2's smile is a sneer, a snicker, a competitive sledge.
Yes, Toaster No 2 is in training for the toaster Olympic Discus team.
When he believes the toast is ready, he hurls the toast high into the crisp kitchen air, over the edge of the bench and onto the floor ... unless one is alert and is within catching distance.
But that is not his only secret.
He is the toasting BOSS. No sweet little retro "Toast Colour" dial is going to tell him what to do.
Oh, no. HE knows best. He KNOWS how you want your toast this morning.
No? Well, it doesn't matter to him. You'll get your toast the way HE wants to make it.
Don't worry about turning that little retro knob to how you'd like your toast done.
He knows what's best.
Oh, did you know that those numbers on the dial actually indicate the number of minutes your bread will be toasted for? I didn't. Well, not till very recently. I've had a protected life, obviously. But in our house it's irrelevant anyway … Toaster No 2 is the decision maker in that department.
Hence, whenever toast is required in our house I need the assistance of what is affectionately known, regardless of gender, as a "Toast Bitch". The role of Toast Bitch is a busy one. Watching, ejecting, catching, re-toasting … sometimes swearing … often binning toast and starting over.
And, yet, I have persisted with Toaster No 2 beyond his warranty date. Don't I hate that.
Why do I do that?
Am I too embarrassed to return yet another faulty toaster to the ever so compliant Good Guys?
Why should I be embarrassed? I bought the first toaster in good faith. Why do I feel guilty?
Anyway, this week I bit the bullet. I wrote an email to Toaster No 2's manufacturer explaining the sad, but compelling story of my relationship with my toaster. I made it clear that I knew Toaster No 2 was out of warranty and that I did not expect that they would be able to do anything but I JUST NEEDED THEM TO KNOW!!
Do I feel better?
Do I expect a reply?
You bet I do.
Is that all I want?
I need the cathartic experience of the manufacturer knowing, feeling my pain, hating my toaster just as much as I do.
So, with that now clearly off my chest, I'll keep you informed re email correspondence with said toaster manufacturer.
What do you think my chances are?
And, while we're on the topic, can you recommend a good toaster … one that toasts the bread the way you want it?