Friday, September 10, 2010

Do Bad Things Happen in Three’s?!

I figured there was a black cloud following me around the other day. Or maybe it was following Vince. Either way, we were both in danger of getting soaked.

On the other hand, if bad things happen in three’s, then I think we’re set. Wait…is there a timeframe for bad things happening in three’s? If it’s within one day, then we’re good and I’m hopin’ that ol’ black cloud has moved on to its next victim.

The other morning Vince decided to take his Honda in for a long-overdue repair to fix something-something-mumble-mumble pieces/part on the car. He even tried to explain the name of the part, its function and where it is located on the underside of the vehicle.

For real? He only got about as far as “Let me explain…” before my eyes did the glazing over thing and I started thinking about split ends and wondering if I’d scheduled my next hair appointment. Poor guy. All I can say is that’s two minutes neither of us will ever get back.

Nevertheless, Vince knows what the part is and that it has needed to be replaced. He’s known this for a while now. So he takes the car in – and they tell him the pieces/part on the other side of the car is also broken and needs to be replaced. Lovely. And the price of this repair? Nearly $400. This, after Vince and the repair person did the bonding, we-used-to-work-together kinda thing that guys in the car business tend to do. The technician worked for no more than 20 minutes replacing both pieces/parts.

Man. Maybe I should listen a little more carefully to this car stuff. That’s well over 800 bucks an hour the guy earned. And I use the term “earned” loosely. Perhaps “gouged” might be a little more accurate. Either way Vince did not leave the repair shop feeling good about the experience.

But at least it’s done and those pieces/parts should hold for a while. Providing, of course, the technician didn’t have his own eye glazing over moment in car repair school when the instructor taught that particular class.

So both of us were feeling a bit glum as he subtracted twice as much from the checking account as we’d previously anticipated.

Like all women, I deal with car repairs by completely blocking out the experience. Okay, maybe not all women do this. But as soon as a thingamajig on my car has been fixed, it instantly slips from my conscious mind. And I’m not so sure it sticks around in my subconscious mind either.

So while Vince worked the calculator and inwardly cursed his former coworker/gouge-loving technician, I went upstairs to wash a load of dark clothes. This was not only a good diversion, but it was also necessary so that I’d have something to wear to work the next day.

I came back downstairs and contemplated my next move…should I start on that new book or should I do something productive in the cleaning arena? While I sat there waiting for inspiration to hit either way, I played a game of solitaire on my phone. And, okay, I admit – I play a lot of solitaire on my iPhone.

Suddenly, I heard a sound like running water. This would not be unusual, except both people living in our household were sitting within feet of each other in the living room. So I said, “Does that sound…?” Vince stopped with the calculator, listened for a nanosecond…and then we both bolted up the stairs. He reached around to the back of the washing machine and said, “I don’t feel any leakage…” just as I stepped in a massive puddle of water.

Oh yes, our washing machine was leaking from somewhere underneath and the entire closet where the washer and dryer sit was flooded. We frantically mopped up the water – or as well as two people in a confined space can work at mopping up water. Mostly I think we were just frantic.

Once we thought we’d mopped up most of the mess, Vince decided to take a shower. I went downstairs.

Where I discovered, naturally, that the ceiling was leaking all the water we’d missed! It was showering the wood coffee table and had already filled up a large glass bowl in the center of the table. So I grabbed a big pot from the kitchen to collect the seeming gallons of water that eventually cascaded down through the ceiling.

Vince eventually came back downstairs after his shower and we did some more mopping up. Which was getting very old by this point.

Naturally, I had left my cell phone, mid-solitaire game, on the coffee table in direct line of the leak. Fortunately, it was facedown on the table – and I snatched it up before it got too waterlogged. I’m thankful that it didn’t go on the fritz because that cell phone in the bag of rice to dry it out thing has never worked for me.

So, fortunately, that’s not the third bad thing that happened.

As I’ve mentioned previously, Vince leaves for work before the chickens are up. (And by “chickens” I mean, well, besides actual chickens, it also means “me.”) He kissed my semi-comatose self goodbye and I slipped back into unconsciousness. Normally I don’t move again until my third alarm smacks me over the head and says, “WAKE UP ALREADY!”

Except that Vince came back upstairs a few minutes later to tell me that the garage door was broken and that I’d have to manually haul it up so that I could back my car out of the garage and leave for work.

He even called before I left for work to make sure his message registered. I think he was afraid that I’d absentmindedly press the remote door opener in my car and start backing out. If I had, we’d be needing some more pieces/parts on a vehicle replaced and we’d be starting this little process all over again. No thank you!

Ah well. The garage door has been fixed. And Vince’s brother and sister-in-law graciously offered us the use of a spare washing machine they had in their basement. And…other than a regular oil change, I think my vehicle is in good running order (knock wood.)

But lemme tell you…if I see a black cat or a ladder or the number 13 anywhere on my way into work today – I’m running in the opposite direction!

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