Monday, November 26, 2007

A Reason to Give Thanks

Thursday was Thanksgiving and I had a wonderful long weekend with Sweetie and my "American family". It truly was a chance to relax and be thankful.

Therefore, it may come as a shock to find that this post is not about my own Thanksgiving. You see, Sweetie has a housemate (we shall call him "Baby-feet") and this is the story of his Thanksgiving...

Baby-feet took his girlfriend, her two children, and her mother to a restaurant for Thanksgiving. He had gone there some years ago, and while there was a short wait, there had been no reason the book ahead. On arriving at the restaurant this Thanksgiving, Baby-feet was shocked to discover many people waiting outside, and an apparent two hour wait!!

Seeing people in a nearby restaurant, he ventured over to see if they were open. However, upon entering he realized this was a private function and returned to tell his companions the bad news.

As he did, the owner of the second restaurant came out and invited Baby-feet and his friends to join them for Thanksgiving Lunch!! "We have some family here for Thanksgiving, but we have so much food. Why don't you join us?"

Well, after being convinced of the sincerity of the offer Baby-feet and his friends joined them... and what a feast it was!!! Turkey, ham, goose, two types of dressing, many a side-dish, and plenty of wine, soft drinks, and home-made desserts. What's more, they were treated like family and at the end of the meal the owner refused to accept any payment!

Now that is truly a reason to give thanks...

Monday, November 19, 2007

Drip, drop, drip, drop...

I have a small leak in my kitchen ceiling...

So I contacted my landlord after observing the leak for a week. I received the following reply:

"Hi Goose,
Thanks for your update on the leak. Is the rate of leak several drops to a pint per hour? per day? (Sorry jollyrgr and Odyssey, I should have gone with the measuring cylinder and graphs) Is the leak confined to the same area that was defined by where you placed the plastic container? (Why would I put a bucket under a leak?) We either have a very slow drip which may subside or get worse. (It's been leaking for two months... I don't think it'll subside) It will be a lot easier to track if it gets worse. (That's reassuring!) Is the rate of leak less since we had the plumber come? (No) There may not be an immediate correlate of leak timewise directly with the usage of water upstairs, since it may take time for the water to wend its way downstairs. Is the leak a big nuisance to you? (No, I love Chinese water-torture) Since the leak is a very slow drip, it might be reasonable to continue to monitor.(It might not be...) I am afraid that if we get the plumber to come again, he may have difficulty in finding this leak as before. He did find the basis of the rapid leak which was from the bathtub trap overflow. (For which I am thankful) Does that sound reasonable? (No!) What is your feeling on the matter? (I don't think you really want me to answer that!)
Many thanks, Land/Landlord/Professor Landlord. (Seriously, he signs his emails "first name/full name/title")

Anyone got a sledge-hammer? I feel like renovating!

Sunday, November 18, 2007

An Open Letter...

To the motorists here where I live,

Please stop trying to run my Sweetie and I over. It makes me cranky.
Thank you.


Monday, November 12, 2007

When is a Leak Not a Leak?

I had a small leak coming from the ceiling in my kitchen. Nothing major, just an occasional drip (well okay, it did cause some softening and cracking of a small area of plaster, but nothing that couldn't be easily fixed). Like any sensible tenant, I called my landlord:

"Call the handyman to look at it", he said.
"I did, but he says he probably can't come out this week", I replied.
"Well, see if he does. If not, I'll get a plumber", I'm told.

A week went by and no-one came, so I rang my landlord. He again told me to give it a week to see if the handyman would come (I should mention at this point that our handyman is excellent and usually very prompt, but he works shifts and was having a hectic couple of weeks).

Two days later, my landlord calls me at work to say a plumber is coming Friday. On Friday I again get a phone call at work:

"We can't reproduce the leak", my landlord announces. "We are running all the taps upstairs (I have a basement apartment) and we can't reproduce the leak... Oh wait, hang on, it's leaking... I'll call you right back!"

Two hours later I get another call:

"Was the leak directly above the bucket you had on the floor of the kitchen?" he enquires.
"Yes... Why?" (No, I keep the bucket there for nostalgia!)
"We can't reproduce that leak, but we found another major leak from your ceiling in the center of the kitchen. We know the source of this leak, so we're going to fix it!"
"Okay..." (Well, I'm glad they found that leak...)
"Do you own a fan?" my landlord innocently asks.
"Why?" (This doesn't sound good...)
"Well, we caused some water damage to the carpet in the course of finding the leak. We've cleaned it up as best we can, but you really need to make sure it gets properly dry." he announces.
"Uh huh."

An hour later, another delightful call:

"We had an idea about the other leak. We've run lots of water and hopefully when you get home you'll be able to see whether it's a slow, delayed leak. Let us know!!"

I must admit. After all this I was expecting to require the help of Noah, Captain Jack Sparrow, and Jacque Cousteau to navigate my apartment when I got home. What did I find? A large damp, but quickly drying spot on the carpet and a slightly damp ceiling above (both of which have now dried).

Oh, and I still have a small leak from my kitchen ceiling...

Sunday, November 11, 2007

Roller Derby Fun!

A friend of Sweetie competes in Roller Derby. For the uninitiated, Roller Derby is a women-only sport where the aim is for a single skater (the "Jammer") to lap the opposition (to score points) without being knocked of the track (to avoid injuries). Each skater has an alias, such as "Abrasion Hussy", "Hildabeast", "Scoli O'Sys", and "Octavius Seize-Her", and there is much throwing of elbows and crashing to the floor (or into the stands).

Truth be told, it's quite entertaining! It doesn't need much of an attention span, doesn't last too long, and it's just plain wacky! What more could you want?