“A water break? Water is for cowards. Water makes you weak.”
Coach Boone, Remember the Titans
(cue Nintendo music from Mario) In our last episode, the water had to be precariously shut off at the water meter in the yard, where hopefully a mama snapping turtle had not claimed it as her nesting ground as had been the case in a previous year. Using only a T-wrench and a stiff clockwise (‘righty tighty, lefty loosey”) turn, Stephanie and her son left the residence water-free and, hopefully, leak-free for several hours.
Come evening, Stephanie’s son is now perilously driving the winding highway crossing the Jack’s Fork River in Missouri not to be seen again for some time. Both Stephanie and the cowboy return from their respective days’ work to the mere two pitchers of water.
Two measly pitchers.
For two whole adults. One of whom actually DRINKS water.
How will they manage???
The claustrophobic cowboy knows he must forge the darkness that is the crawlspace under the house. (This would be a great time to run a local plumber’s commercial, alas, it is not commercial time yet.)
Removing the exterior vent cover nearest the central air unit, the cowboy-turned-amateur-plumber-because-heaven-forbid-we-pay-someone-to-do-a-job-today-that-he-can-do-himself-for-free-not-counting-supplies-over-a-period-of-several-days ‘army crawls’ into the damp darkness. Once he is securely wedged under the center of the house, he begins to bang and groan and saw. Stephanie chooses this critical juncture to share important information by yelling through the floor of the kitchen.
“Hey, COWBOY? You ARE aware that we have a skunk under the house again, aren’t you???”
Yeah. Pepe le Pew has been olfactorily announcing his presence for several consecutive evenings, only the cowboy has not been around to witness said smellevents (cue Looney Tunes music). Stephanie felt it was critical to add to his stress at this juncture in the process. From the deep recesses under the floor, we hear the cowboy holler, “NOOOOOOOO!!!!!!”
What if the skunk decides to investigate his presence?
What would happen if the cowboy got a face full of eau de skunk?
CUE COMMERCIAL FOR TAYLOR SWIFT’S NEW FRAGRANCE, “INCREDIBLE THINGS”.
Back under the house, lying in a puddle of mud, stressing about the potential threat of a skunk bombing and attempting to repair the leak, the cowboy seals what he is certain is the culprit. All is quiet in the house. The hissing has ceased. The leak is repaired. Sunlight breaks through the windows. Angels begin singing. Then suddenly a whooshing sound and the cowboy’s under-the-house-muffled-exclamatory “SON OF A …bleeeeeeeeep!!!!!!!!!!”
UNSCHEDULED COMMERCIAL BREAK
Stop the choir! The rejoicing was woefully premature, and the repair only served to stress the line further toward the front of the house, causing a full-on rupture of the pipe.
A full-on rupture.
Of the water pipe.
Water is now gushing, yea even exploding from the line, flooding the crawlspace with ounces of water per second. The cowboy shimmies to the exit hole and declares his work for the night to be over.
He will not complete the repair this evening. Not. Complete. The. Repair. Darkness is setting in, the part he needs is inaccessible until Plumb-o-Rama opens again tomorrow, and he is fed up, flustered, frustrated, and covered with muddy goo.
Disgusting muddy goo.
He announces to Stephanie: “Shower. Now. Take up more water. Then shut it back off. I’ll fix it tomorrow. TOMORROW. “ (cue optimistic song from the musical “Annie”).
More water is stored in various kitchen containers. Enough for morning coffee, but not enough for a pasta dinner. Emergency showers are taken. Legs are left unshaven (and this is NOT November! The cowboy is risking serious stubble burn if he has his sights set on snuggling.)
Will he get it fixed tomorrow? Will Plumb-o-Rama have the needed parts? Will the cowboy bleed out during the night from a thousand tiny stabs from his wife’s leg hair stubble? Will they ever have linguine again?
Tune in next time for episode 3 of PipeBusters on the Reality Channel.