The other day, our power went out. No big deal. It happens. Thankfully, it wasn’t out for long. Maybe ten or fifteen minutes. I assumed everything was back to normal. It wasn’t.
At some point, I noticed that the microwave was running. Given that it was noon when the power went out, we must’ve been warming lunch. I check and sure enough there was food in the microwave. I pulled it out. And shut the microwave door. It began running. I pressed the “clear” button. It kept running. At this point, I would like to say it grinned maniacally, but it’s a microwave.
I pushed all the buttons, they beeped. But had no effect. The microwave kept running. I unplugged the microwave. It stopped. I figured it needed to be reset. Maybe there was some electrical arcing going on. (Yeah, I’m pretty much making that up. But it has to do with electricity and plasma discharge. I think.)
After ten minutes, I plugged the microwave back in. It began running. I unplugged it. When my electrical engineering son got home, I told him to check out the microwave. He spent a good ten minutes tinkering. His comment, “That’s supposed to be impossible.” I asked if the circuits had been engineered wrong. He shrugged. I asked if a power surge could have fused them. He shrugged. I did not want a shrug. He was supposed to give me a long complex answer half of which I don’t understand. That way I can feel like I’m getting my tuition’s worth.
Here's a very cool arc using lots of electricity.