By Hillel Aron
By Joseph Tsidulko
By Patrick Range McDonald
By David Futch
By Hillel Aron
By Dennis Romero
By Jill Stewart
By Dennis Romero
Illustration by Mike Lee
GENERAL FORECAST: Recent deregulations in the infrastructure have produced severely inconjunct abscissions of light, and this week’s proprietary Void of Course will offer little if any discernible relief. Friday afternoon’s parallel of declination between Pacific Gas & Electric’s and Southern California Edison’s shareholders will contribute as much to a misguided direct motion into the House of Sacramento as to the prime horizontal of their own mutual reception. Surfaces should be wiped with clean, damp cloths; motorized bases should not be immersed in water or other conductive liquids. With Venus still freshly in retrograde, wait a few more weeks before changing your thermostat settings to Vernal Equinox. But go ahead and clear the dust bunnies from your toeplates and fan casings. And keep spare fuses handy!
WASHING MACHINES (www.oldewash.com/museum/lives.htm)
Though you face another week with worn agitator bearings and a loose basket, your financial outlook will increase from the one lonely penny left behind at the bottom of Monday’s whites to a damp wad of three unclaimed 5-spots spun from the back pocket of Wednesday afternoon’s blue jeans. Balanced loads continue through the weekend and on into the middle of next week, but the syzygy of severely knotted bathrobe and hooded sweatshirt in opposition to lonely threadbare tube socks next Tuesday could bring with it as many as 14 “unbalanced” buzzers, some carrying on for as long as three deafening minutes. Unfazed through the vibrations, your exterior remains stainless steel or hardened pastel enamel. A Cubist sibling, friend or acquaintance offers help.
RICE STEAMERS (www.sandsantiques.com/ricesteamer.htm)
Most low-end steamers — Hitachi Chime-O-Matics, especially — will be portly and cylindrical all weekend, maintaining a pale-yellow or beige demeanor throughout the week. By Wednesday night, your detachable AC cord will find itself extending to its full, luscious 6 feet, and by the weekend you’ll soon be chiming the arrival of many small, moist white or brown friends. But what’s that orange light glowing on your control panel? Have you no shame?
MICROWAVE OVENS (http://hochwald.tripod.com/microwave/)
If possible, take the week off to rethink the configuration of your buttons. The differences between “Start” and “Cook” and “Stop” and “Clear” and “Time” and “Clock” and “Full Power” and “High Power” and “Turbo Boost” and “Quad Damage” can confound even the most studied artificial-cheeseburger aficionado. You’d be wise to pause approximately halfway through your tasks this week, then rotate 90 degrees and finish. Your natural antipathy toward other appliances causes your well-insulated but still-transparent door to open from the right. Spinach soufflé plays important role.
If only they knew how lonely it is when the light goes out. Guided by the Virgo moon alone, your butter compartments will struggle with dry chunks of cheap cheese during the first half of the week, while your egg racks overflow with butter pats stolen from Norms and Denny’s. But your shelves remain strong, your hinges tight, your exterior pale and unassuming. Recent concerns over intermittent groans and hummings will pass after a benign culprit — a piece of untethered copper pipe, a loose drain pan or a broken compressor mount — is revealed. Celebrate with a new set of word-puzzle magnets.
Here’s something novel for times such as these, when Pluto takes a break from its orbit: Invite someone over to clean out yer fuggin crumb tray. Let’s have a look-see. Got some sooty rolled oats and walnuts fallen from Health Nut bread, brightly multicolored Pop-Tart sprinkle-poop, absolutely unidentifiable mystery floss, sugar-frosted cat fur . . . and every time your nichromes get hot, it melts a wee bit of everything onto your springs, and then your projects don’t pop all the way out of the toast wells, and some putz burns his thumb. Clean yer fuggin crumb tray!
JUICE EXTRACTORS (www.chetday.com/jfast.html)
Having survived this March’s particularly powerful Ides without choking on a single carrot, you should rejoice and turn your affections toward annihilating organic beets, apples and parsley — nonstop, if your motor can take it — until Tuesday, when, for extremely complex reasons, you might want to experiment on some cantaloupe-and-gin-based beverages with a wise old friend. (Keep the rind on.) Annihilate responsibly; know when to stop. Next weekend will bring about contact with a former lover or employer bearing jicama and wanting to take a spin in your strainer basket “for old times.” Well . . . why not? You could probably use the potassium.
VACUUM CLEANERS (www.designmaker.com/vacuums/kids/show.htm)
Wet/dry models should finally get a week of well-deserved rest following the winter floods. Focus on occupying too much space in a closet or garage, and on remaining predominantly gray, yellow, black or red. Give some serious consideration to going on sale somewhere other than Home Depot. Upright models will enjoy ample sucking opportunities after the mud dries. HEPA allergen-filtration systems should reconsider recent investment strategies. Accept the sage advice of a fictional grandparent.
FOOD PROCESSORS AND BLENDERS (www.cycoactive.com/blender/)