The Garden Hose

October 16, 2011

Yesterday the Nordic Warrior Queen tasked me with cleaning the patio. Saturday is chore day and all that. No big deal really, except there was bird crap everywhere – it looked like a family of diarrhea-stricken quail had taken up residence out there. The walls and floor were graffitied in myriad colors of guano, and there were enough feathers floating about to make a down comforter. There wasn’t a broom or mop in the world big enough for this job.

Time for the hose.

One thing I like about the place is the water pressure. It’s powerful enough to etch concrete. Sadly, the nearest hose bib is sixty feet away (I measured it) and my hose is only fifty feet long. But no worry – I’d previously rigged up an adapter for the kitchen sink. I knew I’d have that patio sprayed off and poop-free in a jiffy.

My wife scowled at me as I dragged the hose from the storage closet and strung it across the kitchen and through the living room. She was afraid the thing might leak, but I assured her it was okay this time. No problem. And besides, there was no way I was going to clean the entire patio with a mop and broom.

Not that there wasn’t some small chance of a malfunction. One time a few months back I’d failed to tighten the hose fitting properly and ended up spraying a little water on the kitchen walls. It’s not like I’d flooded the place or anything, but boy, was she unhappy. So this time I used a monkey wrench to attach the hose to the little plastic widget at the end of the kitchen faucet and tightened that sucker right up. It didn’t leak a drop.

So there I was, hosing away, blasting that nasty bird poop into oblivion, when the water suddenly stopped. Crap. I figured the hose was kinked; you know how that happens sometimes, and you have to drop the sprayer and walk all the way over and untangle the bastard. Sure enough, I could see it was a bit twisted up over by the door, so I just gave it a good shake. No need to walk all that way, right?

Well, the kink was gone, but still no water. Now what? And that’s when the screaming began.

I dropped the sprayer, sprinted across the patio, flung the door open and…horrors! A high-pressure stream of water was shooting across the kitchen like a laser beam – its roar was that of a runaway freight train. By the time I scrambled across the dining room and into the kitchen, splashing my way through ankle deep water and frantically wrangling the unruly faucet under control, the damage was done.

There at the exact point where the kitchen wall met the cabinet where I keep all my beer glasses was a neat finger-sized hole, carved right through the drywall and into the stud beneath. Water was flowing off the counters and onto the floor in a volume exceeding that of Niagara Falls. Worse, my wife stood in the doorway, glaring at me with the look in her eyes that said, “Until death us do part? Really?”

I spent the rest of my Saturday afternoon mopping up bucket after bucket of lukewarm tap water from  the kitchen floor and countertops, then patched the gaping hole in the wall with several pounds of drywall compound. And since the little plastic widget where my hose once attached to the kitchen faucet had been sheared in two, I had to mop the patio as well. My hosing days are over.

1 Comment for this entry

  • Joe Gensle says:

    What a gorgeous day it was in Arizona, today! I hope it’s mild enough for you to get to sleep on the squeaky-clean patio, tonight…. Arrrrgh, whatta mess. (Psst: ask for a shotgun for Christmas and take-up quail-hunting. ‘Til then, I hear that pellet guns…)

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