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Wednesday, August 11, 2010

repurposing old stuff: celebrating the holidays at our house

Ahh, the holidays. A little weather incoming, but we'll be holed up snug, no problem.

So I'm waiting in the snow at the bus stop, and my cell rings. "Are you sitting down?"

Frankly, my dear, there is no "down" to sit out here.

"There is water all over the basement and the ceiling has fallen down."

There are also six newly-built dovetailed drawers for the cabinets half-painted, and a bird feeder McMansion ready to mount. And all of Son #3's business records. Please to get that stuff the (!) out of there, I'll look it over when I get home.

Sitting on the bus, thinking, "geez, I hope this wasn't corrosion from another harebrained quickie builders' trick 30 years ago."

Yep. you might think the subcontractors were in cahoots to loot the place and get out quick, reading that. evidence indicates this is worth considering.

Got home, waded through the mess, set up a ladder which promptly wicked up a quart of water into the legs... there is a steel nail bent over, holding the hot water feed to a floor joist. Bent over to dimple the copper pipe. Rusty as a farmer's junk pile behind the hill. Turn on the water, a fine needle spray from the dimple, corroded right through. electrolytic corrosion, a real plumber would never put in contact two different metals without brass or plastic in between them.

"geez, I wonder if I can fix this with a cut and a coupling. my luck with this is not real good."

And still counting, had to make a speed run to Orange Apron Place for any pipe and couplings I might need over the next few days. Quantity sized by the thought, "how many more of these little time bombs did the esteemed builder set up for us to fail on weekends, holidays, and middle of the night?"

Cut out a tee and angle and four feet towards the kitchen, and six to eight inches either side of the main feed, because the wanker was up against a floor joist, and I can't cook the water out without burning down the house. Yes, I tried. That's why a coupling fix led to a worse leak.

Had to pull down another two feet of ceiling sheetrock.

Got it done at midnight. Hinged, mounted, and filled the bird feeder. took an 80-pound sack of crap out to the trash, at the curb, in the Death Snowfall From Hell.

Had to shovel the car out starting at 8 am to get to work.

It is written that the Lord will not test you any more than you can handle.

Some days I wish he didn't trust me so much.

Oh, and the wife dropped the propane torch, it's hosed up, barely working. They used to keep working after they keeled over from being unbalanced by design. then again, they used to be made here, too.

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