A day that shall go down in the history books. An important day for all mankind. A day celebrated across the entire inhabited earth. I refer of course to March 11, 2014, “World Plumbing Day.”
In honor of World Plumbing Day, we decided to move the toilet out of the attic, where, admittedly, it was not especially handy, and install it in the bathroom, where, we hoped, it would be more useful. My ever-loving wife, “Poopsie” (not her real name), and I have been replacing the vinyl flooring in the bathroom with porcelain tile and the water closet floor was now finished and ready for the toilet.
Making the perilous trek from our upstairs bedroom to the downstairs bathroom in the middle of the night while the upstairs toilet was out of commission was sub-optimal but Poopsie didn’t complain as much as I did.
After defeating the fiberglass dragon (see “Ripping out a fiberglass shower“), it was time to select a shower basin for the new glass tile shower. Showers tend to spray water everywhere and the shower basin has to collect all of that water running down the walls and funnel it into the drain.
Masons get paid to play with mud
The old-school way to do a shower floor is to “mud” it, which means you get a big pile of mortar and shape it with a trowel so that the water will run downhill from any direction into the drain. Let’s just say it requires some skills that we don’t possess (and aren’t interested in acquiring).
Order a basin to go
Back in Manhattan “The Little Apple,” Kansas, my ever-loving wife, “Penelope” (not her real name), and I had built a master bedroom suite with a marble tile shower. We found a place where we could order a cultured marble shower basin and I described the dimensions to the salesman over the phone because it was a couple of years B.E. (Before Email). It came in a big, heavy crate.
It fit perfectly and worked well but it was pretty expensive. Did I mention it was really heavy?
This time around we were looking for something lighter and less expensive. That’s in addition to it being water-tight, except of course for that big hole in the middle for the drain. Continue reading Basin or mason→
The voice on the other end of the line said, “Uh, Mr. Pardun? This is Security.” Conversations that start out like that generally do not bring good news.
“Your water pipes have sprung a leak. We’ve shut off the water to your house.”
It was cold last week. Really cold. The polar vortex swirled down out of Canada, through the Midwest and Northeast, and froze the pipes of our beach house all the way down in coastal South Carolina. That just ain’t right.
Beach houses in our area are built on top of large poles to keep them above any storm surge caused by a hurricane. This means that the main water line runs totally exposed from the ground up 10 feet to the house itself. If this isn’t a prime target for freezing, I don’t know what is.
When we arrived at the house, I asked my ever-loving wife, “Molly” (not her real name), to watch the pipes while I turned the water main back on. It’s not that I wanted her to be the one to get sprayed, of course, but I had to be the one to kneel down in the dirt to turn the valve. That’s my story and I’m sticking to it.
When I turned on the main, the water sprayed out of the pipe feeding the outdoor shower in Molly’s general direction a few feet away from the main water supply pipe and not the main pipe itself. This was excellent news. We could easily turn off the shower shutoff without turning off the water to the whole house.