It's not about the house.

Wednesday, November 7, 2007

The Moral of the Story Is : Ask EVERY Question!

Next update: this post about my shower.

Um, I’m not going to show you pictures, because it’s really gross. Even more grosser than anything I’ve fessed up about to you folks so far -- and that's pretty darn disgusting. Suffice to say there are quantities of mildew involved. And it’s not my poor-housekeepery fault.

It’s not.

Here's what happened: we lived in this house for a year before there was plumbing in that bathroom. Six more months before electrics. And, as you know, it's only recently had heat. I started sleeping in the attached bedroom in December 2005 even without the heat, but it took until spring thaw to get up the nerve to use the shower. When I did, here is the conversation that ensued (maybe not verbatim, but in spirit anyway):

Me: "Hey, it's warm out. Maybe I could finally-finally-finally use that shower!"

Johnny: "Sure."

And so I used it. Every day, mostly, for a year and a half. And now black yuck is seeping from the seams. Johnny says it's because the seams never got caulked up, so the water is getting in them and making secret yuck concoctions on the wall behind. And when new water goes in the seams, it washes out the old yuck stuff and it drizzles out into the shower where my (shudder) feet are.

Not good, considering what we went through to build this room. But also not my fault.

Not, I tell you.

Here is the conversation that ensued when I discovered this:

Me: "Why-- Why... Why?"

Johnny: "Why what?"

Me: "Well [trying not to sound overly judgmental], why wasn't it caulked properly before I used it?"

Johnny: "Because you were all fired up to use it, so you did."

Me: Yes, but it's not like you said No, dear, it has to be caulked properly or else black gook will grow behind it and start oozing out and the room will rot away just like it was when we found it, and I said SHUT UP YOU, I WANT TO USE IT NOW!!!!!!!!!!

You'll note that last is not in quotes, because I did not actually say it. What I actually said was:

Me: "Why-- Why... Why?"

Johnny: "Why what?"

Me: "Why didn't you tell me?"

Johnny (shrugs): "Seemed obvious to me. Not caulked. Water. Mildew. Mold. I figured you didn't care."

Me: Didjn't care? Didn't care!? Even if I didn't care, shouldn't you have? Shouldn't you have said hey idiot, here's a caulking gun, plug it before you chug it baby? Sometime in the past eighteen months, couldn't you have said you know, one of these days we really ought to fix that? Jeez!

But what I said was:

Me: "Can we fix it?"

Johnny: "Yep. Don't use it for a few days. I'll squirt bleach in the cracks and let that dry for a few more, then I'll caulk it up and we'll be gold."

Me: Couldn't you have -- oh, hell. "When?"

Johnny: "As soon as you get a curtain rod for the other shower, so we can both use that one in the meantime."

Me: Oh hell. Fine. I'll do it tomorrow.

That was actually before I hurt myself. I didn't actually say then that I'd do it tomorrow, because at that point he hadn't actually finished the other bathroom yet. But I didn't think it prudent to go point that fact out. But now I'm mostly mobile, so now I will. He says it's not as bad as I make it sound. He says it's not like the walls are really rotting back there. Yet. Sheesh, I'm so freaking glad I never drilled that screw-hole in the wall.

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