A Sad Brief Tale of My Shitty Twelth Hour, So Far…
Jeff's sparse hair is slicked straight back from his forehead and he looks a little like Robert Duval. His name is Jeff, but inexplicably the name stitched on his pocket says, 'Steve'….he came to the door in his stocking feet and thus he has remained, puttering about my house and yard with clipboard. Jen follows him everywhere, sashaying behind him looking like the Lady of the House. (Aside: I've recently become aware of the striking resemblance between Jen and Joan Crawford) Jeff put down a little red rug on my front doorstep, I'm not certain why. He has stepped over it twice. Maybe we'll kneel together on it later? Before the 'snaking'? For this "initial visit" I am getting a 25 dollar discount; the estimated total cost is somewhere in the six hundred dollar range. But the estimate includes a lot of shrugging. Maybe I get to keep the red kneeling rug?
Jeff says that what I have is probably a "chronic situation." He is not the first to suggest such a thing about me, but he is the first to suggest it about my plumbing…He says this several times during the first 1/2 hour. I can tell he is fond of that expression. Chronically fond of it.
He suspects that I have a Root Problem. I have at least 5 huge trees in my yard. $$$. If Eric weren't due home tonight, I'd suggest that we marry, Jeff and I. Whirlwind honeymoon in Greenleaf, tour of that country 'drainfield'…fix my assorted plumbings…. maybe install a fancy new spiggot somewhere…I'd make us a romantic dinner (I have 2 bags of Juanita's chips—his and hers— and fresh salsa! A 12 pack of Alaskan Amber…some whiskey….I'll need all that to make me touch the hair. I'm afraid of hair that is artificially set into a certain pattern. Plus, frankly, I always think of Robert Duval as the kind of guy who cheats at golf, and this guy is like the mini-golf equivalent)…then it will be time to head back to Boise and feed the dogs. Once I let my dogs out of the room in which I have them all sequestered, all but Jen/Joan, we should be divorced by morning. Jeff has only met Jen so far. She is the charming siren song, distracting my fair Jeff from the cacaphony of barking going on down the hall.
WOOF WOOF WOOF. Digging noises on the wood of the doors. Jen looks like Blanche from Whatever Happened to Baby Jane. Before the 'accident'….
"Oh, those neighbors!" I say, waving my unwashed hand. Jeff shakes his head. Neighbors. He understands. His hands are positively crusty. Jen wags; slowly and deliberately. She looks at me with those big eyes only briefly. Shoves her head under Jeff's hand.
I've never married a plumber, but after mopping up sewage all evening and going 16 hours without any running water, and it being suggested that this is a potentially recurring scenario…. I think I could learn to love Jeff and his 400 pound 'snake'….It's not a 'forever' love, but what carnal love is? Give me the occasional chronic 4 hours and a decent snaking over 12 – 35 years of ups and downs any day.
He seems to like dogs. Maybe I should let a few more out and test our 'relationship'…
(Lapse of Time)
Jeff and I watched a video of my pipes, so that he could show me why I want not just a good snakin' like I planned, but new pipes. Modern pipes. Like the neighbors have. That hot divorcee across the street, for instance,
"I did her pipes a few months ago," Jeff tells me, rubbing his shit stained hands on his work pants. His pants are way too short by the way. Jeff is about 5' 8" … but I'll bet 'Steve' is only 5'4".
"Your pipes are really old," the cad continues, "I can't snake them well enough."
Yeah, well. No. What are my other options? Fake pipes? Pipe enhancements?
(Jen has lost interest. She's staring at a fly in the window, just slightly out of reach, but not for long…)
"I can do a Root-ex treatment," Jeff says, obviously disappointed. "That will last about 6 months."
Perfect, I tell him. Nothing should last longer.