I got a new refrigerator today. It was a very tight fit in the built in space we had for our old refrigerator. I measured the space front to back and knew I had about 32 inches, and this new one was 31.5 so it was perfect.

I loaded all my food in, and there was plenty – mostly jars. My husband thinks jars are like dollar bills – it’s better to have too many than too few. We have 10 different jars of jelly. Nobody even eats jelly in this house but me – about once a month. There are six jars of horseradish! Eight jars of mustards. Three tubes of wasabi. It took me an eternity to get all that stuff into the new refrigerator because I wiped off all the sticky on the jars. But It sure looked pretty in there when I got done.

This evening, when I went to pull a frying pan out of the drawer, I couldn’t open it because it bumped into the new refrigerator. F-word! So I pulled the refrigerator out and measured it. 31.5” – it should fit. I pushed it back in as far as I could and tried to open the drawer. It hit the refrigerator.

“Uh-oh,” I said. “The refrigerator doesn’t go in deep enough.” My husband pulled it back out and we looked closely. Where the water line comes in, there is a one inch metal protector that added, duh, one inch to the depth. So the refrigerator was actually 32.5” deep. I kind of wish someone had pointed that out in all the stuff I read online during my hours of research.

I called the appliance store and they will take the bohemith back if we pay a 15% re-stocking fee.

There is a very small silver lining in all this, however. When the appliance guys were here, I asked them if they’d move an old freezer out to the driveway because I’d never get my husband to do it. One of them said, “Oh, he’s that kind of guy, huh?” and I said, “Yeah, he’s pretty good with the remote control but he doesn’t want to do too much more than that while he’s home.”

“I’m like that,” the guy says. “I just tell my wife I don’t know how to do something and then she quits asking me.”

“Really?” I said, intrigued.

“Sure, or else I do it wrong and then she thinks I’ll just screw it up if she asks me to do it again.”

“I think that’s EXACTLY what my husband does!” I said. “I ask him to do something and he never manages to do it the way I want him to, even if I give great directions.”

“Yep, he’s doing that on purpose,” he said. “I do it all the time.”

“Do tell,” I said.

“Well, I better not say anything more, I’ve already given away a big guy secret.”

I started thinking about all the times my husband, and for that matter my kids, have whined that they didn’t know how to do something, or say, “But mom, you do it so much better,” and I quit asking them. Now it’s all very clear to me what they’ve been up to.

From now on I’m going to be on the lookout. When somebody around here does a lousy job I’m gong to accept it rather than thinking I need to do it myself next time because I want it “done right.” It’s better to at least get a halfway job than none at all.

I hope I get the same delivery guys when they come to pick up the refrigerator. If I get more insider tips on the conniving behavior of men, I’ll pass them along.