RTFM (Or in This Case, RTFL) or Better Yet, STFW

It used to be tech support’s favorite acronym, RTFM, for Read the F***ing Manual. It suggested that users could just as easily have found the answer to their question by reading the manual instead of calling tech support.

More modern versions of the phrase are STFW (“search the f***ing web”), GIYF (“Google is your friend”), and LMGTFY (“let me Google that for you”).

Most of us have been guilty of such behavior, asking someone for help when we could have easily looked up a solution ourselves, or not being fully aware of how something works because we never read the operating manual.

Today was a perfect example.

Like I do most times when I go on vacation, I brought my trusty Vitamix blender with me on our trip to London. Doing so enables me to make my morning green smoothie so that I can at least pretend I am eating healthy while on vacation.

A couple of weeks the blender just stopped working while it was running, and it blew a circuit as well. The circuit was easily fixed by just resetting it, but the blender seemed like it was kaput. I tried plugging it into multiple outlets, but to no avail. So I packed it away and thought I would check to see if it could be fixed when I got back home.

But it is kind of heavy, probably close to five pounds, and I was worried that my suitcase would be over the limit when flying from London to Barcelona. Fortunately, my suitcase, with the Vitamix packed safely inside, just made the weight limit, and we were good to go.

Once we arrived in Barcelona, I decided to check what the weight limits were on the airline we would be flying back to the U.S., and unfortunately it was about 6-7 pounds lighter. So I had to figure out how to lighten my load a bit. The obvious candidate was my blender.

First I thought I would check online to see if it was still under warranty. If it wasn’t, I would just throw it out (don’t ask why I didn’t think to check on this before I made the trip to Barcelona). Anyway, as part of the process of sending the email to customer support, I had to get the serial number off the label on the bottom of the blender.

Lo and behold, right on the label, it says, “If your unit shuts off during operation, switch it to “OFF” and wait 20-45 minutes, then resume normal operation.”

So I plugged the blender into an outlet, turned it on, and I heard the sweet sound of the motor running.

My first reaction was joy, and the second one anger. Anger at myself for not having noticed that label, or for not having checked the web.

After I saw that label, I did a simple Google search for “Vitamix stopped while blending”, and as you might have guessed, there were nearly a million results, and the first few that I checked simply said to wait 30 minutes to an hour and try again.

So I was quite bummed, because not only did this mean I’m kind of stupid, it also meant that I had gone a couple of weeks without a green smoothie for no good reason.

Anyway, once I realized that my blender was working, I ran out to a local produce store and bought some fruits and greens, and a few minutes later I was guzzling a green smoothie.

So hopefully this will be a lesson for me to RTFM, or when appropriate, RTFL (label). And if all else fails STFW.

P.S. So the blender will be making the trip back home with me, I’ve just got to find some stuff to switch out of my suitcase and into my carry-on backpack…

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