[reading: Holger Kantz & Thomas Schreiber, "Nonlinear Time Series Analysis"]
Completed the installation of the new old washing machine by performing a pipectomy, and I'm happy to say that the patient survived and has returned to gainful employment. I've also made my first stab (almost literally) at trimming the small hedge in the front garden, courtesy of a shiny new hedge trimmer.
There's definitely a varying CQ* for different power tools. The hedge trimmer appears to have quite a high CQ at first, what with the two foot blade and the precarious balancing on stepladders, but the CQ value drops sharply when you see it taking several seconds to cut through quite wimpy-looking bits of hedge. The prize for the highest CQ still goes to the circular saw (at least in a domestic settingI did a woodwork evening class once and some of the big machines they had there had an order of magnitude higher CQs).
I've also had to resort to a bit of nimbyism, and written to the council to object to the pub on the corner getting extended opening hours. I don't like to do it, but I could really do without living 50 yards from one of the very few late-licensed pubs in Wood Greenwhich I assume will make it a mecca for pissed people between 11pm and 1am, Thursday, Friday and Saturday.
(*: CQ stands for 'Casualty Quotient', which is the extent to which setting up and using a power tool feels like one of the bits at the start of Casualtya red-shirted character doing some DIY project that's going to end in disaster and a trip to A&E.)