Monday, May 12, 2008

Bare Feet are for Beaches...

I have a friend that graduated from Duke University. He is a smart fella that helps folks invest money and he is good at his work. After marriage to another Duke grad, they decided to make Durham their home. The family of six now lives in a house built in late 1967 or early 1968. The age of the house was simple to figure out, the porcelain of the basement toilet was stamped with September 11, 1967 as the date the toilet was made forty years ago.

Parts of the house are starting to show the forty years of life and families that have called the place home. The kitchen is dated in size and layout, the windows are not energy efficient, the exterior needs to be painted about every five years, and the plumbing has small leaks. One of the small leaks happened to be in a drain pipe where two full bathrooms come together. You have the wear and tear of two toilets, two showers and three vanity sinks flowing through this one drain pipe. Made of three inch copper the drain pipe had seen better days. Years of mineralized water had finally rotted a small split in the bottom of the pipe.

This family called me to make the repair, which I was glad to do. Last Friday I was there and decided the pipes needed to dry out before repairs were made. The family was going to use the basement bath for the weekend and on Monday I would return to make the needed repair.

Over the weekend, my friend and patriarch of this Durham family decided to replace the flush valve of the basement toilet. A simple household repair for the DIYer. Remember this, when you have only one toilet working over a weekend and six people living in a house, DO NOT attempt to upgrade the flush valve of a forty year old toilet, it WILL anger the old plumbing, old toilet, don't work on a Sunday after noon gremlins. In forty year old toilets there is ALWAYS one rusted bolt. On Sunday after noon this wonderful man, father, husband, financial guru tempted fate. In the process he broke the toilet tank and sharp chunks of sharp porcelain fell on his foot...and cut the point he had to go to the ER on Mother's Day after noon and receive nine stitches. How did the sharp porcelain cut his foot? This intelligent man was involved in a DIY project barefooted.

Story ends now. You need not further explanation. I will end with this....

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