Friday, May 24, 2013
Where is Warren Buffet When I Need Him? My Tub's Hot/Cold Dial Spins Round and Round like Linda Blair's Head
It has been 39 days since my plumber Roosevelt plumbed the depths of my faceplate hole and splayed open my diseased tub-anatomy, right there, in the open air. Then he left for Thailand.
At least the exposure to oxygen and sunlight caused the fungi to stop pulsating and eventually curl and retract, like the Wicked Witch of the East's shoes. Plus I sprayed Tilex on the exposed parts and within minutes, they shone like new!
It seems that last month, my plumber couldn't access that "special tool" from his colleague to adjust my chainmail sinker’s flexion-pinnacle.
The coveted tool was being utilized on a large job by someone I will name Roosevelt II, who was not available during any of the past 39 days ... to use the tool himself, or to pass this tool on like an Olympic Torch to other plumbing champions. It may turn out this is the root of our delay: the tool-torch may only be passed every four years.
I am curious that Roosevelts I and II are forced to share a single tool. They work for a plumbing, gas and oil company the size of a modest Saudi sand dune, which in a town the size of mine is like dropping Pluto on my driveway. This company is relatively "healthy" via mass and fiscal assets.
So as I said, I am curious that Roosevelt I and II must share a common tool between them.
They are not even the only two plumbers that perform house calls or furnace tuneups. There is a FLEET of employees upon whom the company draws for house calls. Yet among probably 15 skilled artisans, there is one tool that can adjust the sputum-flange so my chainmail fish sinker seats itself inside the slattern-divot, in order that the tub may fill.
Or maybe the tool – I’ll call it Roosevelt III – wasn’t needed for the fish sinker. It MAY have been needed to adjust the thermal titrate-sprocket that allegedly controls Hot vs Cold water.
It’s the circular dial that – if you are lucky and are very good to your oil company – can be placed in the High Noon Position to combine the Hot and Cold water, making "Warm".
We must not have been very good to our oil company, though we have always tried. Back in 1991 when Roosevelt I came to fix a dripping hot water tank, our fourth child was 7 months old.
I answered the door in a kaftan-style sleeper that a Mom Of Four would wear at O Dark Thirty A.M., during summer vacation when their plumber arrives to address a dripping hot water tank.
He took one look at my Kaftan and said, “Oh, Jesus, you’re not pregnant AGAIN?!”
I believe I said something that involved the 'eff word' -- as in, ‘EFF you, Roosevelt I’ or ‘You eff-ing eff-ass, shit-eff’ and that, technically, is not being nice to our oil company. I blame hormones.
The last time they came to install new tub and shower and faucet and stopper fixtures – only five years ago – they managed to mis-install the hot and cold dial. Cold is blue on the RIGHT, while Hot was red and on the LEFT. But if you turn the dial to the left, you get COLD. To the right, HOT. And in the middle, COLD. There was no High Noon Warm on my Sprocket-Thermo-Dial. Our warm resides toward the port-side – at 2 o'clock, or 1400 European time.
But none of that matters now because 1. We acclimated to the Left/Right Conversion and the 1400 Sweet Spot for Warm and 2. The Rotisserie-Thermo-Dial now spins round and round like Linda Blair’s head and 3. The broken dial somehow permits water to run down into the faucet which has entered PRE-POUR MODE in a temperature common to inhabitants of Venus or the Sun.
Molten Lava Skin-Graft ... is the temperature that drip-pours from the tub faucet.
This causes the hot water heater to constantly call for hotter water, which causes me to not want to pour another six week’s of hot water funding down a stopper-less tub drain surrounded by gummy stem cell pinnacles and slimy flox deducers. And that damned chainmail rope attached to a fishing sinker.
So we all take short showers in the morning up in the guest bath, shut the whole system down, run dishwashers, launder whites and do general cleanup with whatever hot water remains. Then we go to the movies. And let it get cold until someone with insomnia wakes up at 0400 and turns the emergency switch back to UP which signals that A New Day Has Dawned.
I explained this all to Roosevelt I, hoping our outright abuse of the system might impel him to find the rotisserie sprocket adjusting winch, or to go out and buy a new one. Or tell ME where to buy one. Or to tell Roosevelt II where to buy one.
It caused Roosevelt I to lecture me on how using the Emergency-Only Shut-Down Switch was "bad" for the furnace, and to, instead, go down to the water heater and look for a Yellow Valve and turn it until it forms the letter T.
This will stop the hot water from reaching the bathroom pipes or even the dishwasher, kitchen, and spare bathroom, without interrupting the entire system via Emergency Shut Down.
In the time it took him to explain this to me, I could have sold my house and moved into a new one with a working rotisserie dial and drain-flange.
And if God wanted my yellow valves turned correctly, he would have provided me with staff: skilled professionals trained to find the cobwebby water heater and search for a Yellow Valve Switch and try to recall from fourth grade geometry the appropriate X and Y coordinates necessary to create a proper T at a 565 degree angle… which begs the question, which part do I turn that MAKES the T? The horizontal top hat… or the vertical pole?
Fortunately, God did NOT give me staff. Instead he gave me a Candy-Red Switchplate with an arrow pointing UP for “ON” and DOWN for “OFF” located one step outside the bathroom currently teeming with exposed tubinalia waiting to be repaired, treated and released to their rightful holes.
We are entering week number eleven with this problem, and day number 40 since I saw any of the Roosevelts. I have not heard from Darcy and I am not feeling like “Being the Scarlett to my Tara” . . .
You know, I am now a Warren Buffett Berkshire Hathaway Stockholder. I am pretty sure if Warren knew about the third world conditions I am forced to live in, he’d dispatch a team straight from Omaha that would install a first floor bathroom with a whirlpool tub and waterproof computer monitors with a live feed to the NY Stock Exchange.
And if I can’t reach Warren on the phone, I’ll just put the house on the market. I hear it’s pretty ‘bull’ this spring.