Originally this was going to be a light-hearted post about the icemaker in my freezer. This photo was taken after I tried to empty a bag of ice into the icemaker bin and ended up, as you can see, dropping half of it all over the floor.

Which led me to realize that some of my more astute friends might ask why I was supplying my icemaker with ice.

And the reason, of course, was that I didn’t have the energy to scour the Subzero website to find the authorized repair man in my area only to find that he/she is out of business, or has moved to Florida, or has become a teacher’s aide. And then to call a service technician in another area and beg for them to pay me a house call at which point I would pay $80 to have them enter my home, take a cursory look at my icemaker and tell me I needed a plumber. Then repeat that whole process with the plumber only to have him tell me I needed a Subzero repairman, or a part he didn’t have but I could call a supplier and order it.

At which point I would have thrown up my hands and just bought bags of ice instead.

So basically, to answer your question, with my bags of ice, I have eliminated the middleman, saved myself both $160 and a few afternoons of waiting for someone to show up between the hours of 12 and 5.

That was what I was originally going to post. But then I happened to be catching up on my CBS Sunday Morning viewing (yes, I do DVR them each week and no, I am not 95 years old – no offense to the 95 year olds in the crowd who DVR OITNB and Transparent.)

Anyway, on this particular episode of CBS Sunday Morning, the feature story was about the Navajo people living in Northwest New Mexico who have no running water. Like zero. And they live hundreds of miles from the St. Bonaventure Indian Mission where they can access water. And many of them don’t have cars. So they end up depending on water deliveries from their good-hearted neighbor, The Water Lady, and living on around 7 gallons of water a day. As a point of reference, most of us use around 100 gallons per day. AND, there are challenges to drilling a well. Like money. And rocky ground and the uranium that

contaminates the ground water after the area was heavily mined during World War II.

So then, my icemaker started to seem like a petulant little first world problem. Which it was.

And then, at around minute 6:47, Professor Dan McCool, a political science professor at the University of Utah, who was interviewed for the segment because of his expertise in Indian rights, said something really interesting. He said that the federal government blamed the state government and the state government blamed the feds. Which sounds a lot like my much less critical repairman/plumber scenario. Which led me to wonder why in the world someone can’t just take responsibility for things and solve them?

But of course, bringing water to the Navajo doesn’t have such an easy solution. George McGraw, who runs the non-profit organization,, says in the piece that they brought the issue of a well to hydrogeologists, engineers, and construction specialists and they were told that it was one of the trickiest these people had ever seen. Nevertheless, they are currently overcoming obstacles and finding work-arounds in an effort to dig a new well for these people. After this story aired, they got some help. Viewers innundated with so many donations that they now have the funding to complete the well in New Mexico. Which doesn’t solve all their problems but it’s a start. It also gives me a little more faith in humanity, which is always nice.

So all this is my long-winded way of telling you that I got a well-deserved smack down from the Universe last week. I heard the message loud and clear over the clinking of the ice in my bottomless glass of clear, filtered tap water.

My problems are funny. Their problems are critical. And even though I am still buying those infernal bags of ice, now it seems far less like a chore and far more like a privilege. And a choice. Which is what the Navajo don’t have.