Last Friday my parents came to town, partly to help me fix a leaking bathtub faucet, but mainly to visit. And by ‘help me fix a leaking bathtub faucet’, I clearly mean my dad did all the work. I simply walked home when they arrived to let them in (although they had already done so given that they have a spare set of keys), and then promptly left after I stuffed my lunch-hungry face with an english muffin and a couple of slices of salami. And yes, for me, that is what passes as stuffing one’s face these days.
Anyway, the taps in the tub had been leaking for about 2 weeks and they were getting progressively worse. It wasn’t the drip, drip, drip of a basic leak. It was more of a constant stream. Or river. Whatever.
Being somewhat environmentally aware, I realized that allowing water to pour directly down the drain without at least using it for some purpose was probably enough to send any environmentally friendly individual into a veggie-fueled-frenzy of green-hemp-rage. Not having any patchouli on hand1, I called my parental units to come to the rescue.
But Dr. Dan, why not just fix the leak yourself? you rightly ask. Well, you might want to sit down or brace yourself for this revelation but
My plumbing knowledge ends with Drano and a plunger.
Shocking, I know! But it’s just not in me. And it’s not for lack of trying. Trust me; my dad has tried and continues his efforts to teach me what he knows about the topic – which is a lot. But every time I try to take notes on what he’s doing, all I hear is best described as what Charlie Brown hears when his teachers speak. Sorry Dad, I might be a whiz when it comes to numbers, but mechanically inclined I am not. I’m one of those that rely on the Right-y Tight-y, Left-y Loose-y adage. True story.
And this is not the first time he has been called on to rescue me. When I had a pipe burst in my first house (way back in ye olde time-y days of 1997 or 1998) he managed to single-handedly fix the problem. I write single-handedly because back then I’d be hard pressed to identify a screwdriver from a ratchet. And I’m not even kidding. Oh how I wish I was.
I also called on him a few months ago when my kitchen sink backed up. Of course, before I called him I did give it my all; my all being the one-two punch of the Drano/Plunger solution. But even my best one-two punch was thwarted when the sink began to overflow, all due (after some investigation) to the clever misuse of the drain as a grease-disposal-pipe by my neighbour3. While I am admittedly plumbing-challenged, I know enough to understand that grease does not go down the drain. Again, my dad fixed the problem more-or-less. In this case, he fixed 95% of the problem, but I still had to call a plumber to deal with the clog that was out of my dad’s reach (25ft out of my dad’s reach to be exact).
I’m sure these revelations only work to strengthen the image of me as a nerd. I’m okay with that. One should know where their strengths and weaknesses lie. My strengths – numbers. My weaknesses – pretty much everything else 🙂 But don’t get me wrong. I’m not completely inept when it comes to home repair. I have managed to replace several light fixtures and install some ceiling fans, all without electrocuting myself, and all while keeping each and every one of my digits. For me, that’s 100% win.
Thankfully, my dad is skilled in all things home repair. And that works just fine for me, thank you very much.
1 The only known cure for veggie-fueled-frenzies of green-hemp-rage.
2 Actually, I guess a more accurate phrase would be that my plumbing skills end with my dad seeing as he is who I call after I’ve tried Drano and a plunger.
3 Being in a condo, some of our pipes are shared. In this case, the drain pipe from the kitchen.
- Plumbing 101 – Fixing leaky toilets and faucets (greenflbroker.com)
- in other riveting news (homesomethinghome.wordpress.com)