Have you ever noticed that large appliance repairs usually happen in the middle of the night? If you have noticed this, you have probably wondered what it is about the smallest hours of the night that causes you to find yourself with your stove or dishwasher scattered around your kitchen in fifty-seven pieces? Ever tireless in our pursuit of cutting edge scientific research, we decided to turn our powers of investigation on this complex—but very urgent—question.
We began our investigation by interviewing Tristan H. Vanderford, Professor of Applied Appliance Psychology at Erie University:
The Flying News: Is there psychological evidence connecting appliance repair with certain times of day?
Tristan Vanderford: Indeed there is. Several studies show a definite quantitative correlation between appliance repair and the hours between midnight and two o’clock. However, these findings apply only to large appliances when repaired by the user or owner, and only when the user or owner is male. Professional appliance repair and appliance repair by females tends to happen during normal working hours.
TFN: Does psychology suggests any reason for these findings?
TV: There are several rival theories. One of the most prominent is that the more primitive parts of the male brain associate large appliance repair with gutting and cleaning large animals. In primitive societies, the best anthropological and psychological evidence suggests that males reserved the daytime hours for outdoor pursuits such as hunting and playing football. Furthermore, we have some evidence that processing large animals was a messy and unpleasant task. According to this theory, then, males did not want their wives getting upset with them for making a complete mess of the kitchen while they were busily gutting a wooly mammoth or a quagga. They preferred to leave the mess for their wives to clean up in the morning after they had made their escape to the football field. We believe that these deep-seated instincts have been transferred to large appliance repair, and this theory elegantly accounts for most of the facts. You can see my published works on the topic, especially “Temporal Aspects of the Neuropsychology of Large Appliance Repair.”
TFN: What are some other major theories regarding this aspect of appliance repair?
TV: The other theories are not nearly as good—they’re all pretty stupid, actually. One of the most popular ones is known as PATSY, which stands for Psycho-Appliance Temporal Synchronicity Youthification—a pretty dumb name, don’t you think. Rick F. Liggett—isn’t that a ridiculous name—is most associated with this view, and has recently been appointed to an endowed chair on the strength—if you can call it strength— of his so-called research. Anyway, if you want to know about this theory, you can read my paper, “Fundamental Flaws in PATSY Approaches to Appliance Psychology,” where I refute the theory—devastatingly, I might add—and make Liggett look foolish at the same time. It’s nothing personal, of course. It’s just that the theory isn’t very rigorous.
TFN: Well, uh, thanks for explaining that other theory. Do you have any last thoughts concerning appliance repair for our readers?
TV: Well, for a really thorough and in-depth look at the topic, they should all buy my forthcoming book, Appliances, Appliance Repair, and Appliance Psychology: Revolutionary New Approaches That Will Change Your Life. And don’t forget, anything that stinker Liggett says is stupid.