My Walmart turkey
satchel raye

…Black Friday deal….

Today I went into Home Depot, on Black Friday mind you, to drive home with a new refrigerator but they said I had to order it. So I cannot walk into a Home Depot on Black Friday and but a refrigerator to take home? NO.

I started at Lowe’s. I’ll buy a simple cheap white old fashioned frig. The kind with the big top freezer and the low refrigerated section. I lived most of life with a frig like that and I hated it. I hated that I had to bend down or get on the floor even to get at my food. Am I spoiled? Yes, but it always seemed just like bad design to me. “My Granny had a frig with a pull out freezer on the bottom. Why weren’t their refrigerators like that anymore?” I thought for the decades of my youth.

Then they started making some like that, bottom freezer models started to gain acceptance and become popular again. I am a big fan. I don’t use a freezer much so I don’t like it when it’s stuck right at my chest or my face. Give me beer, juice, milk and yogurt at my face. Put the frozen stuff down and out of sight.

When we first started living here at my Grandparents house, the frig was in an alcove that was 32″ wide. As we started to have kids and grow into a family, refrigerators were also getting bigger and more fancy. We were constantly having the issue that there wasn’t enough room in the refrigerated portion of our appliance to fit all the food. There was always an old school frig on the carport and that had a HUGE freezer at the top. Being the problem solver I am I thought, “We could keep all the frozen stuff in the freezer on the carport and use the whole 32” space for refrigeration. Well, there’s not a store in town that sold a 32″ refrigerator only so I found one online and bought it. A refrigerator. To be delivered to my home in 2003. It wasn’t easy finding a refrigerator only and the one I found was made by Woods and cost $1000. Nice refrigerators at Lowe’s were less than that but they took up so much space with the freezer part. I thought I had solved the problem of getting the most efficiency from our small space.

The Woods never seemed to get cold enough, even turned all the way to the coldest setting. It was loud. It whined all the time.

Eventually after that fiasco I convinced my wife to tear down the wall that held the frig in and get a wider frig. The Woods took the place of the old carport beer frig.

But back to today: I went to Lowe’s and the simple old timer white big top freezer model was $450. Ugly. Expensive. And it was Black Friday. Isn’t everything supposed to be free today?

I thought I should check Home Depot. But they had 4 white ugly big top freezer models: bottom of the barrel refrigerators, all about $500. I tried to buy one. They said I had to order it. I said, “Can’t I just take a floor model?” They said “No.” It was Black Friday. I could not give them $500 and take home a shitty frig. This blew my mind.

I was hungry. I had been out longer than I anticipated and I kept thinking about leftover Thanksgiving dinner back home. I went home for that.

With a satisfied belly I sat down a the computer, determined to bring a refrigerator home this day for my beer and kombucha. Craigslist. I searched frig, refrigerator, & refridgerater (how some hicks spell it). It seemed that each search brought me different results and I was bound to keep my search to Gainesville. I don’t plan to be driving to any other towns around here. I don’t want to go to Ocala, High Springs, Alachua. I found a lot of side by sides (so 80’s) that were almond and ugly and $350-$400. “What happened to the simple $100 frig you could get used back in the day?” I kept asking myself over and over.

I kept thinking, “Wouldn’t it be nice to get a black one that we could maybe use one day in a pinch if our frig went down? One that was halfway decent.”

20 minutes and 2 months back into my search I find a listing. No picture. The guy says call only, no emails. Here’s the ad:

may tag refrigerator — $300

I have a black may tag refrigerator that’s 3 years old… has a couple of blemishes but works great….. I has double doors up top for fridge part… a big pull out drawer on bottom for freezer… contact me with more questions……I have pics if u want them…..

do NOT contact me with unsolicited services or offers

In my mind I thought, “Maytag is a good brand. Double doors at top and black with bottom freezer, that’s like the one we have. That’s an expensive frig. 3 years old?? $300 is cheap.”

So I called the guy and he was not in Gainesville. He was in Newberry. 45 minutes from me. Damn.

But I know the frig. I have the same one in a Samsung model. I think we paid almost two grand on sale. Best frig I ever had. Hands down. So I go.

Sure enough the frig is legit. Robert said he moved it from Texas 7 months ago and it’s been in storage ever since. Said he paid $2500 for it in 2012. He unloaded it and never bothered to wipe it down but besides a good cleaning the thing looks practically brand new. I don’t think a vegetable ever went in the crisper drawer. That thing is a BEAST. We slide it carefully into my truck. I give him $300 in 20’s.

Once home I made soapy hot water and scrubbed it down. I hosed it out. It’s finally on now, after waiting the requisite time for the oil to settle. It’s quiet. It’s real quiet. It’s not in the shop but in my office. Behind me right now getting down to temp. It’s gorgeous. It’s fancy. It’s awesome. It’s full of beer and kombucha. Full.

I have not hauled the Woods to the road YET. Tomorrow.

I feel like I won the ultimate Black Friday deal. I got a $2500 frig for $300. Just had to drive to Newberry to get it, and give it a good cleaning. The best Craigslist ads are the ones without pictures. That’s my new theory. He didn’t want to photograph it because he didn’t want to clean it.

Robert was in the Army. He had moved in with his dad here and he said they were both disabled vets. Robert looked in his early 20’s. He seemed able bodied enough but maybe he has PTSD. He left a cool Army magnet on the frig. He said he wants to buy a house with his dad. He is looking for the right place. Somehow the cigarette dangled from his lower lip like it was glued there. Somehow it never seemed to go down or get smoked but just hung there while he talked and helped me load the frig.

I’m glad I met Robert and didn’t buy the frig from Lowe’s or Home Depot. While I think by washing the frig and posting a picture Robert might have gotten twice as much, I got the feeling that he was happy that I had come along to buy it.

I like refrigerators. I own 13 of them including the ones at the restaurant, my home and rentals. My favorite is the big walk-in one at work. Today I bought another good one. I’ll let you know if it has any problems. But I feel pretty good about my Army man Maytag Black Friday black frig deal.

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