Friday, June 1, 2012

Tile-Guy and Tub-Guy Duel with Levels...

You know those days when you can't do anything, when you're so lethargic, you can barely hold your eyelids open, let alone a viable conversation?  I've been feeling that way today.  I wondered why.  And then I remembered.  Yesterday.

In the morning, I performed a favorite gig: Urban Legends, 6th grade, Hill Country Middle School, last day of school.  You couldn't find a more frenzied bunch of kids but it was fun.  Tired but pleased, I came home to find Tile-guy at the door, ready to replace the tiles on the master bathroom wall around the tub.  A new tub was put in a year ago but it was faulty; Home Depot gave a refund but didn't want to know about removal of said tub.  A second new tub was bought; different plumbers had just taken out the first new one and put in this second.  Tile-guy took one look at the newly installed tub and said, "Crooked."  He pulled out an enormous level, set it down.  "Crooked both ways.  Call your tub-guy."  He went to lunch.  Tub-guy came back and got out his level, a much smaller one, set it down.  "Straight," he said.  Actually, it wasn't straight; it was off just a tiny bit.  "Make no difference," he said.  "Is fine.  Call Tile-guy back."  Then he pointed out that, although the tub box claimed the second tub was the same size as the first, it wasn't.  He measured it and was right -- 1" shorter.  "Tile-guy problem," he said.  I forced him to wait while I called and insisted Tile-guy come talk to Tub-guy.  Did I mention that Tub-guy is Latino with only a little English?  Disgruntled, he waited on the toilet seat (lid down).  Tile-guy came back, fully armed with his huge level.  Smiling (patronizing), he showed Tub-guy where he was going wrong.  Tub-guy, ashamed of his small level, pointed out the problem as he saw it, showing Tile-guy how to do his job.  Tile-guy said: "Raise the tub an inch!"  Tub-guy said: "Use tile-guy skill!"  After 15 minutes, I shouted, "Stop!  Act like grown-ups!  Sort it out!"  Actually, I said, "Tub-guy, cheat the bath up a little.  Tile-guy, cheat the tile application a little.  Now play nice."  Tile guy said he'd return in the morning and left.  Tub-guy raised the tub and left.  Everyone was really unhappy.  I was exhausted.

I then spent 90 minutes investigating a good price and booking my plane ticket to UK only to find an Expedia computer error in the booking.  I called Expedia to cancel the first booking and book a second.  Nice lady.  Indian.  In India.  Neither of us could understand a word the other said.  An hour and a half later, it was done...3 hours to book 1 flight.  I now await the refund...

By this time, it was 7:00.  A little disgruntled myself and as I'd missed tea-time, I went straight to the gin.  Drink in hand, I sat down to unwind.  A hippily-clad young lady walked to my door with a clipboard.  Please, no!  I can't talk to anyone else, I just can't.  But she was working and I was resting so I felt bad.  She wanted to talk about Walmart recycling electronics which I totally support so I smiled, took a breath, signed her petition, thanked her for working when I was resting.

Before I'd had time to take another sip, I saw my across-the-street neighbor pull into my driveway.  NO, NO, NO!!!  Go away, I can't talk...I can't communicate...I can't...  But he beckoned me to come out to his van.  I tried to make my house-mate go but the neighbor shook his head and pointed at me. I smiled -- honestly, more of a grimace -- took a deep breath, grabbed my G&T (I wasn't going without it this time!) and went outside.  I was ready to slap him but he reached into his van and pulled gigantic bunch of flowers.  His van was full of flowers.  He'd been doing some work at a flower shop and they'd given him all their leftovers which would otherwise be tossed.  He gave me enough to fill three vases which surround me as I write: gladioli, daisies, carnations.  And so I learn, for the trillionth time: Never give up on your day!  NEVER give up on your day!  It can get better in a moment!

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