Home
In this issue
December 2, 2014

Jonathan Tobin: Defending the Right to a Jewish State

Heather Hale: Compliment your kids without giving them big heads

Megan Shauri: 10 ways you are ruining your own happiness

Carolyn Bigda: 8 Best Dividend Stocks for 2015

Kiplinger's Personal Finance editors: 7 Things You Didn't Know About Paying Off Student Loans

Samantha Olson: The Crucial Mistake 55% Of Parents Are Making At Their Baby's Bedtime

Densie Well, Ph.D., R.D. Open your eyes to yellow vegetables

The Kosher Gourmet by Megan Gordon With its colorful cache of purples and oranges and reds, COLLARD GREEN SLAW is a marvelous mood booster --- not to mention just downright delish
April 18, 2014

Rabbi Yonason Goldson: Clarifying one of the greatest philosophical conundrums in theology

Caroline B. Glick: The disappearance of US will

Megan Wallgren: 10 things I've learned from my teenagers

Lizette Borreli: Green Tea Boosts Brain Power, May Help Treat Dementia

John Ericson: Trying hard to be 'positive' but never succeeding? Blame Your Brain

The Kosher Gourmet by Julie Rothman Almondy, flourless torta del re (Italian king's cake), has royal roots, is simple to make, . . . but devour it because it's simply delicious

April 14, 2014

Rabbi Dr Naftali Brawer: Passover frees us from the tyranny of time

Greg Crosby: Passing Over Religion

Eric Schulzke: First degree: How America really recovered from a murder epidemic

Georgia Lee: When love is not enough: Teaching your kids about the realities of adult relationships

Cameron Huddleston: Freebies for Your Lawn and Garden

Gordon Pape: How you can tell if your financial adviser is setting you up for potential ruin

Dana Dovey: Up to 500,000 people die each year from hepatitis C-related liver disease. New Treatment Has Over 90% Success Rate

Justin Caba: Eating Watermelon Can Help Control High Blood Pressure

The Kosher Gourmet by Joshua E. London and Lou Marmon Don't dare pass over these Pesach picks for Manischewitz!

April 11, 2014

Rabbi Hillel Goldberg: Silence is much more than golden

Caroline B. Glick: Forgetting freedom at Passover

Susan Swann: How to value a child for who he is, not just what he does

Cameron Huddleston: 7 Financial Tasks You Should Tackle Right Now

Sandra Block and Lisa Gerstner: How to Profit From Your Passion

Susan Scutti: A Simple Blood Test Might Soon Diagnose Cancer

Chris Weller: Have A Slow Metabolism? Let Science Speed It Up For You

The Kosher Gourmet by Diane Rossen Worthington Whitefish Terrine: A French take on gefilte fish

April 9, 2014

Jonathan Tobin: Why Did Kerry Lie About Israeli Blame?

Samuel G. Freedman: A resolution 70 years later for a father's unsettling legacy of ashes from Dachau

Jessica Ivins: A resolution 70 years later for a father's unsettling legacy of ashes from Dachau

Kim Giles: Asking for help is not weakness

Kathy Kristof and Barbara Hoch Marcus: 7 Great Growth Israeli Stocks

Matthew Mientka: How Beans, Peas, And Chickpeas Cleanse Bad Cholesterol and Lowers Risk of Heart Disease

Sabrina Bachai: 5 At-Home Treatments For Headaches

The Kosher Gourmet by Daniel Neman Have yourself a matzo ball: The secrets bubby never told you and recipes she could have never imagined

April 8, 2014

Lori Nawyn: At Your Wit's End and Back: Finding Peace

Susan B. Garland and Rachel L. Sheedy: Strategies Married Couples Can Use to Boost Benefits

David Muhlbaum: Smart Tax Deductions Non-Itemizers Can Claim

Jill Weisenberger, M.S., R.D.N., C.D.E : Before You Lose Your Mental Edge

Dana Dovey: Coffee Drinkers Rejoice! Your Cup Of Joe Can Prevent Death From Liver Disease

Chris Weller: Electric 'Thinking Cap' Puts Your Brain Power Into High Gear

The Kosher Gourmet by Marlene Parrish A gift of hazelnuts keeps giving --- for a variety of nutty recipes: Entree, side, soup, dessert

April 4, 2014

Rabbi David Gutterman: The Word for Nothing Means Everything

Charles Krauthammer: Kerry's folly, Chapter 3

Amy Peterson: A life of love: How to build lasting relationships with your children

John Ericson: Older Women: Save Your Heart, Prevent Stroke Don't Drink Diet

John Ericson: Why 50 million Americans will still have spring allergies after taking meds

Cameron Huddleston: Best and Worst Buys of April 2014

Stacy Rapacon: Great Mutual Funds for Young Investors

Sarah Boesveld: Teacher keeps promise to mail thousands of former students letters written by their past selves

The Kosher Gourmet by Sharon Thompson Anyone can make a salad, you say. But can they make a great salad? (SECRETS, TESTED TECHNIQUES + 4 RECIPES, INCLUDING DRESSINGS)

April 2, 2014

Paul Greenberg: Death and joy in the spring

Dan Barry: Should South Carolina Jews be forced to maintain this chimney built by Germans serving the Nazis?

Mayra Bitsko: Save me! An alien took over my child's personality

Frank Clayton: Get happy: 20 scientifically proven happiness activities

Susan Scutti: It's Genetic! Obesity and the 'Carb Breakdown' Gene

Lecia Bushak: Why Hand Sanitizer May Actually Harm Your Health

Stacy Rapacon: Great Funds You Can Own for $500 or Less

Cameron Huddleston: 7 Ways to Save on Home Decor

The Kosher Gourmet by Steve Petusevsky Exploring ingredients as edible-stuffed containers (TWO RECIPES + TIPS & TECHINQUES)

Jewish World Review Nov. 12, 2007 / 2 Kislev 5768

Mr. Fixit strikes again

By Dave Barry


Printer Friendly Version
Email this article

http://www.JewishWorldReview.com | I was walking through my bedroom on a recent Sunday morning when I suddenly had a feeling that something was wrong. I'm not sure how I knew; perhaps it was a "sixth sense" I've developed after years of home ownership. Or perhaps it was the fact that there was water coming out of the ceiling.


But whatever tipped me off, I knew that I had a potentially serious problem, so I did not waste time. Moving swiftly but without panic, I went into the living room and read the entire sports section of the newspaper, thus giving the problem a chance to go away by itself. This is one of the four recommended methods for dealing with a household problem, the other three being 1) wrapping the problem with duct tape; 2) spraying the problem with a product called "WD-40"; and 3) selling the home, and then telling the new owners, "Hey, it never did that when we owned it."


Unfortunately, when I went back to the bedroom, the ceiling was still dripping. My wife suggested that maybe there was water sitting on the roof and leaking into the house, but I knew, as an experienced guy of the male gender, that she was wrong. I knew that the problem was the plumbing. It's time that we homeowners accepted the fact that plumbing is a bad idea. Many historians believe that the primary reason the Roman Empire collapsed is that the Romans attempted to install plumbing in it. Suddenly, instead of being ruthless, all-conquering warriors, they became a bunch of guys scurrying around trying to repair leaking viaducts. (Tragically, the Romans did not have "WD-40.")


So I knew that our plumbing had broken, and I also knew why it had chosen that particular morning: We had a houseguest. Plumbing can sense the arrival of a houseguest, and it often responds by leaking or causing toilets to erupt like porcelain volcanoes. And, of course, our plumbing had waited until Sunday, which meant that the plumber would not come for at least a day, which meant that it was up to me, as a male, to climb up into the attic and do the manly thing that men have had to do as long as men have been men: shine a flashlight around.


"Maybe you should check the roof first," my wife suggested. "Maybe there's water sitting up there." She was fixated on this roof theory. Women can be like that. I had to explain to her, being as patient as possible considering that I had urgent guy tasks to perform, that she was being an idiot, because the problem was the plumbing.


So I got my flashlight and climbed up a ladder into the attic, where I was able, thanks to my experience as a homeowner and my natural mechanical sense, to get pieces of insulation deep into my nose. I was not, however, able to locate the source of the leak, because my attic turned out to be a cramped, dark, dirty, mysterious place with pipes and wires running all over the place, and off in the distance-just out of flashlight reach, but I could definitely sense its presence-a tarantula the size of Mt. Everest.


So I came briskly back down the ladder and told my wife that, to stop the plumbing from leaking, I was going to turn off all the water to the house until the plumber came. Speaking in clipped, efficient, manly sentences, I instructed her to fill containers with water and write a note for the houseguest telling him how to flush his toilet with a bucket.


"Before we do all that," she said, "Maybe you should check the. . . ."


"Don't tell me to check the roof!" I explained. "Stop talking about the roof! The problem is the plumbing!" Sometimes a man has to put his manly foot down.


So while my wife wrote toilet-flushing instructions for our houseguest and prepared a small apologetic basket of fruit and cookies, I tried to locate the valve that would shut off all the water. This was very difficult, because our plumbing system turns out to have approximately one valve for every water molecule. We could start a roadside tourist attraction ("Turn here for the amazing valve forest").


The fascinating thing is, not one of these valves controls the flow of water to our particular house. I shut a number of them off, and nothing happened. So if, on a recent Sunday, the water stopped flowing in your home or store or nuclear power plant, that was probably my fault.


Since I could not turn off our water, our ceiling continued to leak all Sunday night, so that by morning our bedroom carpet was a federally protected wetland habitat teeming with frogs, turtles, Mafia-hit victims, etc. So we were very happy when the plumber arrived. And if you are a student of literary foreshadowing, you know exactly what he did: He looked at the ceiling, went outside, got a ladder, climbed up on the roof and found some water sitting up there. It couldn't drain, because there was a little place clogged by leaves. The plumber fixed it in maybe 10 seconds. I could have easily fixed it myself at any time in the previous 24 hours if I had not been so busy repairing our plumbing. I wrote the check in a manly manner.


So far, my wife, showing great self-restraint, has said, "I told you so" only about 450,000 times. Fine. She's entitled. But don't you start on me, OK? Not if you want me to turn your water back on.

Every weekday JewishWorldReview.com publishes what many in the media and Washington consider "must-reading". Sign up for the daily JWR update. It's free. Just click here.

Comment by clicking here.


Previously:

‘Einstein Gap’: It's all relative
Lost in space
The Trojan Twinkie Caper
MR. LANGUAGE PERSON: WATCH YOUR LANGUAGE!
Feeding your worst fears
Sock it to 'em, sartorially
The rubber band man
Does public art make sense?
Needling the birthday boy
On calamities (in the sky and on your head)
Modern medical mysteries
Bored games
Dave's Field of Nightmares
Lewis and Clark stepped here!
The ultimate water gun
Poetic license, with no rhyme or reason
Great moments in science
This won't hurt a bit
One giant leap for frogkind
My visit to Nether-Netherland
Smile and say cheese
Shooting carps in Wisconsin
The perfect storm
Stickup in aisle 3
Please don't feed the tourists
Land of the Frozen Earwax
The birth of wail
Honk if you're married and can't cope with anger
Rabbit ears get poor reception
Percentage of frogs in food jumps
Night of the living roach
Mr. Language Person: Some words of wisdomality
Mind your P's and Q's and teas
Loose lips sink sequels
NOW WE'RE COOKIN'!
The right to Bear clubs
Science: It's just not fair
Road warrior specials
Where's the beef? (Low fat)
There is nothing like a male (guys)
MOTIVATE! THEN FAIL! NEW YEAR'S RESOLUTIONS
Rooting for the midgets of the Midway
Revolt of the rodents
He can drive any truck named ‘Tonka’
All bets are off
How do you spell S-A-T?
Sour grapes and mud
Pro golf: A game of non-stop boredom
Guard-dog vigilance is nothing to sniff at
Warm and fuzzy Cold War memories
The funny side of ‘Beowulf’
HOLY HEAT WAVE, BATMAN!
Abs-olute madness
Beware of brainy bugs
I'm in a sorry state
The frog plague: The inside story
If she had a hammer….
Keeping an eye on crime
Camping and Lewis and Clark
When in Iowa, don't forget to duck
Junior takes the wheel
Growing old with Dave
Sites for sore eyes
Beware of sheep droppings
Ireland, land of bad Elvis
Mr. Peabrain's misadventures
When they're out to get you, keep cool
Mothers of invention
Kill 'em with kindness



© 2006, The Miami Herald Distributed by Tribune Media Services, Inc.

Columnists

Toons

Lifestyles