The Louis Armstrong Memorial Dishwasher

A battered appliance gets a nickname.

Comments: 15

  1. Thank you, Mr. Friedman, for the memories. I was a college student in 1964 when Louis Armstrong's recording of "Hello, Dolly" was heard everywhere. It seemed to me that everyone on campus was singing it! It was a universal good-bye, at least for a while, to Rock and Roll, to Bob Dylan, to a by-then-almost-worn-out Elvis, and to the newly-arrived Beatles. I could walk down the hall of my dorm and hear "Hello, Dolly" coming from behind somebody's door. I could walk across campus and hear someone singing "Hello, Dolly." It was wonderful.

  2. Wonderful memory to cherish, Dean! (On my first dorm floor, it was the "Pippin" album that had caught on big again just then.) I recall Louis Armstrong getting equal top billing and being surprised that was for just this 65-second section, playing "Louis" of course. I loved his work and couldn't imagine he wasn't coming back again in the film. When I found out his history with the song, it made more commercial sense, but felt like a bait and switch, perfect for selling the film about the scheming charms of Dolly Levi. :) Louis Armstrong and Barbra Streisand's beautifully rehearsed spontaneous reactions - "Louis" and "Dolly"

  3. Nice Louis Armstrong memories, but to me the story belongs to KitchenAid that made a quality appliance lasting 50 years. More appliances like that would be welcome today!

  4. A quality product, and amazing that it did its work so well that the consumers didn't mind the "rattle and roar" that came with it. But it's the Louis Armstrong Museum part that makes it a true New York story for Metropolitan Diary, as opposed to maybe Consumer Reports, where a lot of us and all the print edition readers might not have enjoyed it. :) I'd been betting (to myself, not with anyone) that the Studio 54 story would get the kick-off position in print, but this one about this other New York institution got first position and was worthy, too.

  5. This NYC girl, born in Manhattan, grew up and will be buried in the Bronx. I know NY stories when I read them, thank you very much!

  6. Hi Ellen, I'm so sorry. I'd thought as I typed it that the smiley-face would reflect the light joking tone intended, but looking at it on my screen after I submitted, I could tell I was mistaken about that. I think you and I do agree totally about how amazing it is that the company made a product that did its job well for 50 years. (And sounds like it could go on a while longer!) I do really love that the Diary keeps it exciting by featuring such a wide range of stories where New York is the common thread; as diverse as New York and the people who live here or visit.

  7. I guess that's way better than my discovery a few years ago that I had the same outdoor chairs as Saddam Hussein.

  8. Your comment made me laugh when reading the news for the first time in too long a time. (I am extending the meaning of news here, of course.)

  9. I just had to come back and tell you Shaun, I'm still laughing at your comment two days later. And I've been telling everyone too - hope you don't mind!

  10. What a sweet story, but a rueful ending. Why does it have to do its final number? Can it find another home? “Its rattle and roar drowned out conversation, but it made our plates sparkle.” Tune of “When the Saints Go Marching In” (Louis Armstring’s classic rendition) Oh, when the plates get loaded in Oh, when the plates get loaded in Oh how I love to know they will sparkle When the plates get loaded in Now when the spray begins its work Oh, when the spray begins its work No, I don’t mind there’s no conversation When the spray begins its work We feel it’s time to haul it out We feel it’s time to haul it out We’ll stop and hear its big final number Just one more time, then haul it out Yes, uninstall and haul it out. (maybe repeat at the dishwasher's new home?)

  11. Very cute story, thank you for sharing!

  12. I listen to a lot of Louis on my internet radio. I found a station (in Russia, no less) called Radio Caprice Dixieland. No ads, no talk, just music. And LOTS of Louie.

  13. Nick, you certainly gave your dishwasher an elegant name! I would have liked to have seen a photo of it and also of the garden chairs like those of Saddam Hussein! I do think that my mother has the same washing machine from when we moved into the house in 1959. It is true that many appliances do not last much more than their is called planned obsolescence..Planned obsolescence | The Economist

  14. The KitchenAid dishwasher in my late mom's kitchen -- I guess it's the Bobbie Freeman Memorial Dishwasher -- is an Imperial model from 1966, still going strong. (We had to replace a door spring last year.) Currently using a Bosch that takes 2.5 times as long and does no better. Ah, progress.

  15. Jan, I, too, have a Bosch dishwasher. On it there is a button that can be used to reduce the cycle times by one half. Maybe yours has this option too.