Illicit Plumbery

Well, the plumbing issue has been attended to, and it only took a mere 5 hours.

Last night we called our Emergency Plumber, a regional plumbing firm that will come at any hour of any day and charge accordingly (although it is less than the national companies charge, it's still the sort of rates a respectable highwayman might expect from an average job). They were not able to alleviate the discomfort our medieval plumbing was suffering. The guy explained why not (it was 10pm, he didn't have the disgronifier, the googleplex remodulator, etc.) and the job was a Very Big Job. In fact, just getting us patched up and good-to-go-for-now was, itself, a Big Job. He gave us two official estimates, one for the Very Big Job (which would have had me soiling myself, except we had that plumbing issue) and for the Merely Big Job. He also told me that, if I wanted to, I should call the office and schedule whichever thing I needed/wanted done. So I called, and the Customer Service Rep said they would have someone out to do the Big Job "Tuesday or Wednesday...okay, Thursday at worst." I asked why the delay and I was informed my little suburban enclave in paradise requires a series of permits for exterior plumbing work, but hey don't worry, that permit-filling thing is included in the highwayperson's estimate.

So Mr. Plumber Guy hears all this and looks both ways, the way that they do in cartoons when you're about to hear something juicy in sotto voce and says that IF

1- I am willing to pay cash
2- I need no receipt, and
3- Pay for any fines as a result of doing this permit-free

He'll come on Sunday (his day off) and do it for 1/3 the price.

So I weigh my options: I can wait and wait and wait--unplumbed, undrained and unflushed--for the local bureaucracy to grant me the privilige of paying a ridiculous sum to cease being unplumbed, undrained and unflushed OR I can go with illicit plumbery, run to the ATM, and be up and running by the next day.

The thing was a raving no-brainer. I told Mr. Plumber to array himself in Ninja Plumber attire, and arrive in Full Stealth Mode, the stack of Franklins will be there awaiting his arrival. Which he did, save he arrived late, I assume, from another episode of Illicit Plumbery. He quickly got to work, occasionally pointing out the degenerate nature of my house's pipes* and fittings. After much digging, hacking, sawing, showing me crumbling ferrous bits that days ago had provided safe passage to water from my home, speaking to me in Plumbery Jargon** such as my needing "a ten 3/45 maybe a twelve 3/45," cursing and spitting in a very professional manner, and having me flush the toilet and filling tubs and sinks...the job was done.

I gave him the florins, he gave me a knowing wink-and-nod, looked both ways and disappeared into what would have been the fog if this were London and not a tony suburban enclave in the semi-tropical paradise that is SoFla.


P.S. The catalyst for ALL this was a fuzzy hair scrunchy that was somehow flushed.

* It seems safe to say half of my pipes are weakened, rust-colored, cylindrical colanders.
** You'll be pleased to note I nodded sagely, as if I were a man who relishes days spent at Home Depot instead of, say, Alan Flusser's or Williams-Sonoma.


blackbird said…
Me thinks he was a pirate.

Who in your home even USES scrunchies?
Joke said…
There could be some sort of piratical plumbery, yes. The scrunchy culprit is likely my niece, as nobody here has hair long enough to use or require scrunchage.

Poppy Buxom said…
I was gonna say. The only person I can think of who has less use for a scrunchy than That Fabulous Babe You Married is Yul Brenner.


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