Thursday, September 25, 2008

Inanimate Objects Strike Again

Clearly my mind must have been preoccupied with a lot this week because not even once did it entertain a single thought about what could go wrong before yom tov. My lists were all prepared, I had my schedule of what to do drawn up, and I was even going to have time for a leisurely bath at some point. Sigh.

A few weeks ago National Grid (the new name for Keyspan) called to schedule a regular inspection visit. Apparently they are required by law to inspect the boxes and plumbing connections and heating connections every 20 years or so. Of course they have never done so up to now. So the inspector was here this morning. And he found a small gas leak. And he locked the meter and turned off the gas. So now I have no gas, no hot water and, of course, no stove, no dryer and no heating system. The plumber is here even as I am typing this replacing the pipes. [Note to yeshiva bochrim looking to make a lot of money: become a plumber. Said plumber was here for all of 15 minutes at a charge of $280.] If only that were the end of it. National Grid has to come back and do the inspection again and relight all the pilots on all the gas appliances.. And that is where the problem starts. As the inspector put it "we are really busy right now. Maybe we can get there on Monday."

As soon as the plumber is finished I'll be on the phone with the National Grid office attempting to beg for rachmonos and trying to explain shabbos and yom tov to them. If talking doesn't help then I hope they are susceptible to hysterically crying women. Because if they don't get here today then I'm going to find out if it is possible to cook Shabbos and yom tov using only a microwave oven.

I've said it before and I'll repeat it again now: inanimate objects are not all that inanimate and they most certainly and definitely know when a yom tov is coming. Couldn't they just give me a little break and let ME decide which of them is going to go on the blink?

Update: In the serve and volley with National Grid they are so far up to getting here sometime tomorrow maybe. And I have now been 17 minutes and 43 seconds on hold waiting to speak to a supervisor. News flash: the supervisor is not picking up her line. They are now passing me up the line to her supervisor. Second news flash: The second supervisor, a clear spawn of satan, started to give me all kinds of grief. No time for tears and more than time for a bit of nastiness. In the end he puts through an order for a technician to come out today. But here is the real kicker: there is no guarantee that the techie will actually come today. And if he doesn't then I have to call back tomorrow morning to put in another order for a techie to come out, and there is no guarantee that he will come tomorrow either. I thought the gas company was a public service utility. I really wish they would remember that "service" part.


Anonymous said...

I once had an oven that broke almost every year, right before Pesach. (It seems the self cleaning process tended to break the "glowbar" that was used to ignite the gas oven). Once I had no cold water, only hot water, in my apartment the day before Pesach. I can sympathize!

Anonymous said...

I read this at work, laughed, said better her then me and then came home to find that my hot water heater had cracked in my absence and flooded my basement and the carpeting. The earliest the plumber can get here is sometime tonight and if you paid what you did for just a few minutes work I don't think I really want to know what my problem is going to cost. And my husband is first flying back on the redeye from Calif. tonight. Quite a welcome home gift he is going to get.

s(b.) said...

best wishes for the tech to show up on time tomorrow. Is Kosher Island still around? If memory serves me correctly, they had great meatballs. I'm going to my bubbie's for shabbos. Can't wait! May yours be wonderful.


Anonymous said...

Coleman camping stoves (2 burner variety) don't cost much and a 2 or 3 standard propane cylinders will run the stove for hours. I live in Florida. Hurricanes Katrina and Wilma, collectively left me without power for about six weeks (one of the storms shredded my succah frame.). All of my appliances are electric. We lived out of a huge cooler (restocked with ice daily) and did all of our cooking on the patio for several weeks.


Ahuva said...

I hope everything is fixed soon and that you have a restful shabbos. Also, I second what Tom said about a camping stove. They're great for emergencies.

Orthonomics said...

Extra stuff always happens before Yom Tov. I'm doing unplanned laundry. My toddler woke up soaked and the many spots she slept on my bed were also soaked. I wasn't planning on more laundry, but it moved to the top of the list and making RH desserts has now moved to the bottom of the list.

ProfK said...

Kosher Island is still going strong, although Mr. Elbogen senior was niftar exactly a year ago. His son learned really well from his father. Still the best kosher caterer around.