A personal diary keeping people abreast of what I am working on writing-wise.

Tuesday, January 03, 2006


There was flooding in the nearby Willamette Valley over the weekend, and apparently my sympathy pains for water overflow are now a permament fixture.

I woke up Monday at about 4 a.m. and walked to the bathroom. As I cut through my kitchen, I wondered why I was standing in a puddle. My next-door neighbor had, as it turns out, picked up the new incarnation of the leak I had last September. Our sinks are back to back, and so as the water came through, it also spilled over into my apartment, making a dirty puddle on one side of the kitchen. No water was flowing, so I mopped it up and moved stuff out of the way. My bag of stuff to take to Powell's Books to sell suffered a casualty at the bottom, but my case of Cut My Hair escaped thanks to the double-boxing. The maintenance crew of the building spent the morning and the afternoon in the crawlspace fixing everything, and by the time I returned home from work after 10 p.m., hot water was back. Everything seemed fine.

That is until 1 a.m. when I was woken up by the sound of water. I braced myself, hoped it would merely be rain, but no such luck. The original leak had been on the other side of my kitchen, near the bathroom; now it was over the sink, creating a puddle in the same place as the previous morning. I ran and got my manager and after a bout of crankiness on his part (understandable, given that all he could see was crawling back up into the walls and floor for something he's been fixing over and over), he got me some big garbage cans to use to catch the water, and I got to mopping. The cat was locked away in the bedroom, because the water wasn't stopping. This also made me think I should get the DVD rack in there out of the way.

Big mistake.

I thought if I was careful, I could just crab-step the rack the couple of feet out of the kitchen. It worked about 3/4 of the way, and then the whole thing exploded. Truth be told, in the long run, it was an unnecessary move. I didn't know that at the time, obviously, so my intentions were good, but dammit. This meant separating every DVD and pulling out water-logged sleeves and laying them out. This morning, I checked over them all, and it's a relatively small number of ones whose sleeves were damaged so bad I am not sure what to do. About twelve, ranging from mild wear to really, really terrible, the worst being the cardboard slipcase of Giant with James Dean.

I called my insurance agency. I've had renter's insurance for about a decade now and never needed it before, so I wasn't even sure if this claim was going to be enough for them to bother with. Unfortunately, they have a little tune they like to sing called "$500 deductible." An overly high estimate would put these discs at less than half of that. It feels like further proof that in most ways, insurance companies couldn't care less about their customers. They've banked a couple of grand off me over the years for this service; you'd think that would earn me some credit.

Someone asked me yesterday, when I was noting how I had not showered and had to wash myself in the sink with water I'd had in my refrigerator and had heated in the microwave, why I didn't move. Well, I've been here since 2002, and the space is good, affordable, and located right by my work. This has been the only real problem I've had the entire time, and I don't really feel like this is some kind of negligence on the part of the management. The building is a historic building, and the pipes are old. My understanding from when they fixed the first leak, every time they would plug a hole, the pressure would be redistributed and a new hole would spring. Obviously, if this doesn't stop here and now, I'll have to change my mind, but let's get down to brass tacks: I can't afford to move. It's expensive.

Same person told me I should see this as a good omen for the new year, that water is purifying and represents a fresh beginning. Yeah, right. Tell me that with a mop in your hand, mister. I'd buy that theory only if a big wave had come along and washed you down the street before you could have told me that nonsense.


[EDIT/UPDATE: I went over them again and I have downgraded the number of hopeless DVDs to nine. (Though, really, I probably should go through the whole pile double-checking, not just the ones I had laid out to dry.) The nine are all have titles starting with E, F, and G, and it would cost me $92.45 to replace them outright. Ugh. I'm going to try writing the studios and see if any will give me replacement sleeves. Anyone else have suggestions?]

Current Mood: crappy

golightly@confessions123.com * The Website * Live Journal Syndication

[to leave comments, click on the time-stamp below, then scroll down on the new page] – All text (c) 2005 Jamie S. Rich


Mason West said...

Any sleeves you can inconspicuously "swap" from a certain video store?

m...coale... said...

you forgot to mention the damage to your *wink wink* copy of Salo.

I wonder if your insurance company knows how much OOP Criterions are 'worth.'