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Name: margalit
Location: Massachusetts, United States Professional writer, educational advocate, opinionated ultra liberal mother of 18 year old twins, living life in the slow lane due to hypertrophic cardiomyopathy, congestive heart failure, and diabetes.

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Sunday, December 09, 2007

Disaster? Why yes, but of course!

We have a plumbing problem. We've had said plumbing problem for a long time. The problem is we have roots in our antiquated plumbing. The roots grow in the clay pipe joints, and block the flow from the house to the city sewer. Not only is this not a new problem, it's a rather severe problem since I have to call the plumber at least once a week to come out and unstop our downstairs toilet. No matter how much plunging I do, no matter how high tech our plunger is, plunging alone won't unstop the toilet any longer. It needs a big snake and it needs a plumber to run said snake.

When my friend was over yesterday and came back from the bathroom saying that the toilet wouldn't flush, I wasn't surprised. It's been over a week since the plumber came out, after all. Since it was a weekend, I figured we'd just use the upstairs john until Monday, when I'd call the plumber....again. However, that was a short lived idea. This morning the Boy clogged up the upstairs toilet, rendering us toiletless. Yes indeed, we have no potty.

I went out this morning and used the bathroom in a store to drop my kiddies in the pool, but when I got home, the Girl was looking rather green around the gills. She had to make a deposit, and there really wasn't any place in the house. I sent her to McDonalds, which is nearby, and she returned looking markedly lighter and more comfortable. So we've all pooped once today, in various and sundry locations. The problem is, we're going to need to have a working toilet fairly soon. The nightime hours just do not bode well for running out for a poop, if you know what I mean.

I called the plumber, but guess what? He wasn't home. Surprising right before Christmas, eh? I also called the landlady, and she was somewhat sympathetic, but not all that concerned. Of course, she's in Florida where it's hot and you could run out to the back yard and drop trou if you really needed to. Not quite so convenient here in snowy Boston. She's going to call the Root Doctor early in the morning, but the deal is, they have to replace the pipes and she's just not willing to do that. So the saga will continue ad nauseum until the pipes are replaced.

Living without a toilet certainly makes you appreciate the porcelain throne a lot more than you normally would. Like right now... feeling the rumblings and I know that I'm going to need to use some facilities pretty quickly. Ugh. So not fun.

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4 Comments:

Blogger Carmi said...

It always amazes me how we fail to appreciate the basics of urban life - running water, indoor plumbing, electricity, etc. - until it's taken away.

I hope your landlady gets a clue before long. Isn't it a basic requirement to ensure this doesn't happen to a tenant? Not that I want to advise rocking the boat, but if her inaction is leaving your family at risk, wouldn't you have no choice but to pursue her in some other way?

Yeah, I'm feeling militant tonight. Sorry. Hope you're enjoying the chag regardless.

9/12/07 10:16 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

we had the same problem two years ago...turns out said clay pipes were actually cracked not just blocked. had to have plumbers come in to dig a 5 foot hole under our front porch to replace the clay pipe with the new plastic stuff, all the way to the city access. thankfully, house was still under our mortgage warranty...only had to pay $100 deductable on a $3500 job. new baby in house, getting ready to leave for vaction and here we had to decide if we wanted to flush or wash a small load of dishes by hand. fun times!

10/12/07 1:12 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

This situation isn't legal. You can report your landlady to your town's board of health. Also, you might want to check out this:

http://www.lawlib.state.ma.us/landlord.html

Good luck!
Quiltinggrrl

10/12/07 1:43 PM  
Blogger Daisy said...

Call roto-rooter or their east coast equivalent. They'll get you a foam that you can pour down the pipes twice a year to kill the roots, but not kill the trees. I know, it's a chemical, but it sure beats not having toilets.

14/12/07 8:55 PM  

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