Yeah, I've been a little more M.I.A this week, even more than I thought I'd be, and here's why. In addition to all this other stuff I was doing (you know-- the job, the other job, the two deadlines, the exercise, blah, blah, blah), last Monday I was sitting in my office, and, I kid you not, I heard this noise that sounded like someone was peeing in our hallway.
Yeah-- in the grand scheme of things? Water anywhere in your house that you didn't turn on?
So, I run out into the hallway, like "what the.....?" and discover that the air conditioning is raining water and some black stuff through the ceiling panels and into the hall. After screaming a little bit, I realize that I'M RESPONSIBLE FOR THIS SITUATION, run downstairs to turn off the A/C (bear in mind, it's L.A. in the summertime, so unless there was an E-Mergency I would never have even considered doing this). And so began an epic battle with the insurance company, two a/c guys, and two plumbers that finally ended at 11:00 Saturday morning.
Because you see, in my house, the "condensation pipe" drains into the "main drain," and the "drain pan" is old and has rust in it, and all of these things together make an A/C overflow not only likely, but quite miraculous that it doesn't happen more often. These are all terms I've learned this week, you see, after the first a/c guy, who, I kid you not, was Russian, had a high voice, and made a concerted effort to do absolutely zero work, decided to write the words "plumbing problem" in the insurance report-- a term that was guaranteed that the whole process would be nothing short of....Russian.
So, I'm on deadline, and working, and hot, and yet I'm trapped in the hot house waiting for contractors, each of whom passes the buck on to the next. First the drain is clogged. Then, no it's not-- it's the condensation valve's problem. Then, no, sorry--- you need a new A/C, but the insurance company's not authorizing that. Then one plumber stands me up after making me wait seven hours, and makes me feel bad by saying that he's not coming because he's stuck in Pasadena because someone's gas main blew up, and can't I understand how that's more important than my problem?
Or, one of my favorites-- the plumber who actually did show up saying "I'm sorry ma'am....that pipe is not part of my domain," as if his domain ends slightly to the left of the problem. Finally an A/C guy showed up on Saturday who was also Russian, and who was actually willing to fix the problem, but not before giving me a lecture about how "people with long hair have more clogged drains," and how I should really watch that, because I'm certainly the cause of the problem. It was all very strange and frustrating, and the end result was that I was too hot and too overworked to even THINK about funny things, much less write about them. I'm so behind in my "friends and family" correspondence that my dad actually sent me an email asking if I was sick or something. I haven't updated my Facebook profile in forever. No podcast. How about this? I have a thank you note in my purse from two weeks ago that I haven't HAD TIME TO MAIL. So, that's about how the month of August is going for me. How's yours? By the way, the photo above is of the ceiling panel that I now have to replace, in my copious free time to go looking for stucco-colored ceiling panels that fit the exact dimensions necessary, because the A/C guy ROLLED HIS EYES if I asked if he knew where I could get a replacement for the panel, which (obviously) is ruined because of the leak.
But, the finish line is near. I'm one week from one deadline and two from the other, and we're going up to Carmel for a week to try to relax (even though I'll still be sort of working), and then I'm going to actually do things like write on this blog again, and read magazines, and, like, return your email. And that's going to be nice, I think.
By the way, in case you're interested, I have actually gotten that "long haired people cause plumbing problems lecture" before a few times, to the point where I brush out my hair a few times a day and especially before washing it, so that it doesn't go down the drain. I didn't want to mention this to the Russian A/C guy, though, because that just makes me sound a little bit crazy and I wanted him to focus on the task at hand. Better to tell it to the internet, where it's already well-known that I can't sleep and am afraid of food, right? Maybe I should change the name of this blog to "Funny Strange....OCD."