Aspirador Solo


A question from the audience: Whatever happened to that vacuum cleaner?

Frankly, I thought I’d ridden that humble household appliance clear round the bend when I found myself turning it into "The Velveteen Vacuum."

But I did go out and check on it one more time. It had migrated from its corner a little way down the street and stood suggestively close to a Dumpster (out of sight in a driveway in the picture) the last time I saw it. Inspecting it, I saw that someone was very concerned that whoever used the vacuum cleaner ("el vaccuum" here, instead of the more common "el aspirador") switched it to the off position when they were done with it.


The label reads: "Siempre OFF. Solo ON mientras lo uses. Ponlo OFF cuando acabes de hacer el vaccuum." Online translation — Google’s, which is among the many sites I tried that couldn’t handle the word "ponlo" — renders the message thus: "Always OFF. Only ON while you use it. [Ponlo] OFF when you finish making the vaccuum."

Note that el aspirador is switched off. Someone was finished making the vacuum.

4 Replies to “Aspirador Solo”

  1. Man…That is a piece of Americana. Pack it up and send it to the Smithsonian. The note is what makes “it” art. Seriously, you can’t throw that thing away now. It would be a crime against culture. Hope you are well.

  2. Ponlo is from the verb poner — “to put,” literally — plus the direct object lo — “it.” Turn it off when you’re done using it.

  3. I’m going out right now to see if someone put El Aspirador Solo into El Dumpster. If not, I’m going to grab it and ship it to the Smithsonian Institution to join Walter Brennan’s “Real McCoys” overalls.

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