Friday, December 5, 2008


If I had only known I was a handy man all along. Living on my own, I've forced myself to take on projects that only a certified jack-of-all-trades could complete. What's that you say? What did I do? Well, let me tell you.

First, I installed my first shower head. I know what you're thinking. That sounds easy, right? But there is so much involved. First, you have to pick the shower head that's going to make you happier than the shower head you are replacing. It has to be sleek, attention-grabbing, effective, eco-friendly, and more. It's the first thing you experience on the average day.

So you've picked the perfect shower head. We opted for the hand-shower with a long hose on it so that you can take if off the wall mount and move it around. If there's a more official term for that, feel free to let me know.

Then, you have to figure out how to get the original shower head off. Maybe that's easy when it's a good quality shower head and mount to begin with. But when you're in an apartment that has had who-knows-how-many previous tenants who probably didn't care too much about it, you have to assume the shower head is old and cheap and is the victim of prior abuse. So I took a slow approach. I tried loosening it up here and there, not trying to bring an all out attack from the beginning. Eventually, after several failed attempts with my bare hands to unscrew the original shower head, Melissa discovered that the nozzle detached without removing the screw-on mount. That gave me an easier grip, so I returned with a renewed aggression.


Eventually, against the instructions on the side of the new shower head, I used a wrench. I got it off with no problem. Thanks to my brother's advice, I knew what the spool of not-quite-tape, not-quite-paper, but not-quite-plastic was, and what its purpose was. Plumber's tape, apparently, goes around the threads of the wall mount before you screw on the new shower head. (Interjection: I'm making up terms for all of these apparatus-es...apparati?).

So I wrapped the threading with plumber's tape and attached the new shower head. It is phenomenal. I should have used more tape, 'cause we have a very, very minor leak at the attachment. We may or may not detach and remedy it.

Shortly after my sense of accomplishment began to fade, we came across another problem. The can opener was on the fritz. In order to open a simple can of tuna for a late-night study break snack of tuna melts on crackers with Muenster cheese, we couldn't get the two rotors on the can opener to turn in 'sync. We had to spread the device and squeeze it closed over and over again to cut the can open one bit at a time. Very tedious. So after I opened the tuna the hard way, I went to work on fixing the opener.

I dismantled it and sought out a lubricant. The only thing available was olive oil (cringe!). WD40 would have been ideal, but we have none. In fact, many other types of oils would have been more ideal than olive oil. But you have to work with what you have. So, I lubed the faulty portion of the device with olive oil and re-assembled. Success! Another handy job.

I've also hung some pictures around the house. But I didn't just hang them. I measured out distances, leveled them, made sure they matched their counterparts across the room. I made an art out of hanging art.

This independence thing is starting to be quite the learning experience. It appears that my biggest motivator to get things done in life and around the house is wanting to procrastinate on studying and learning the law.

First final in t-minus 5 days. Tuesday morning, Civil Procedure. Yikes.

1 comment:

Julie said...

you may need to implement your can opener fix-it skills over at my house. Our can opener suffers from the same ailment that yours once did.

Congrats on the new shower head installation.... I guess if this law school thing doesn't pan out, you now have a budding back-up career as a plumber!