Singapore Adventure

Sunday, February 12, 2006

Electrical Appliances 202
by venitha

For an electrical engineer, I am embarrassingly inept at determining which transformer and/or adapter is required for which electrical appliance. Logic let me down one too many times, so I abandoned it in favor of the ever-popular "if it fits, try it" scheme, which has been predictably - and, annoyingly, logically - ill-fated. So far, I have destroyed the following:
  • My curling iron. The actual act of destruction was a fit of rage that ended with it broken in half, but I doubt I'd have been driven to such fury had it worked. After months of lulling me into a false sense of secure curling in Singapore, it developed an attitude when connected to Malaysia's electrical system. It got hot enough to melt my hair the first time I used it and refused to heat above lukewarm from then on. Melting was actually a fairly positive contribution to the bad bad haircut, but lukewarm, i.e. no, curling was deadly. I still maintain that my own bad behavior was therefore justified. You may feel differently, but you didn't see that haircut.

  • My ultrasonic jewelry cleaner. This marvelous invention is just the ticket when you're constanty swathed in sweat and sunscreen; if only they made them body-sized. Not long ago, however, I pushed my cleaner's power button, and instead of the familiar oddly-comforting dentist-office buzz, I heard a pop, followed by a good deal of cursing.

  • My "good" transformer. I've used it successfully many different times with many different appliances, but last weekend when I plugged it in, it promptly melted, leaving me to wonder three things: How much will we be charged for singeing the kitchen counter? Does our condo have smoke alarms? Do we have any other "good" transformers that we're just leaving plugged in? My fervent apologies, but, alas, the melted transformer is unfortunately on that list of pictures I regret not having taken.

Jim has destroyed nothing, has not lectured me one whit, and has taken to keeping his iPod out of my reach. Apparently his extra three years of education beyond my own were worth something.

The complete the prerequisite Electrical Applicanes 101, click here.