TERRIBLE DECISIONS: We have a bathroom, almost

I find myself in the incredibly odd position of needing to take some time tonight to read the owner’s manual for my new toilet and– wait for it– program the remote control. That is a true sentence.

That is because the lid to the toilet there is actually a bidet— if you look closely you’ll see the power icons and such on the back of the seat– and I have no idea how to make it work. I fiddled with the remote and was unable to get it to spray any water at me so we’ll have to see what finagling is necessary to get it working.

The rest of the bathroom is kind of interesting. There are a number of pieces we don’t have yet. You see a corner of the vanity in that picture; that’s not our vanity, which arrived with some significant damage, so they gave us a loaner. As a former furniture salesman who is aware that furniture is made of wood, I’m not pressed about it. The cabinet isn’t in just yet, and since we don’t have the actual vanity, we’re holding off on installing the mirror until we can center it properly. The doors and all the various hanger-things go on (or back on) tomorrow. The actual shower door needed to wait for precise measurements once the tile was in, so that’s still a couple of weeks out; we’ll make do with a tension rod and a curtain until then, which is fine. And speaking of the shower:

That’s our actual shower head, but (again) we have some loaner pieces– if you look at the actual pipe coming out of the wall and the ring on it, they’re both chrome as opposed to the brushed nickel we have everywhere else. That’s also waiting on backordered stuff and they’ll swap it out once we get the right pieces. The two little holes on the right are for the (again, no shit) remote for the shower head, which is too high for my wife to reach easily; the remote was a BIG selling point for her. I’m not even going to show the vanity, as again, it’s the wrong one, but here’s the (correct) lighting sconce:

I should probably crop that, but whatever.

More tomorrow, once the rest of the bits and bobs go in, and then we’re going to be done for a while until the “real” pieces show up.

On the limits of my principles

I’ve mentioned that my wife broke her foot the other day. She does most virtually all of the grocery shopping. While I am perfectly capable and willing to step in and handle that job, the simple fact that I don’t do it means that it will likely take me twice as long to get the job done because I don’t know where everything is, and I’ve discussed my (getting better) issues with panic attacks while wearing masks a couple of times as well. So as soon as we discovered that we could do curbside pickup for our groceries for just $5 extra plus the tip, we decided that at least for right now that’s how we were going to handle things.

Now, they allow you to set general rules for what to do if something you want isn’t in stock. I’m not sure what the options are (she did the ordering) but basically it boils down to they pick substitutes or they don’t. Our son has some allergy issues so she decided that the best move was just to go with no substitutes, and if for some reason we’re denied something that we feel like we need I can always make a run tomorrow for a couple of things.

You may recall also that I wrote a Comprehensive List of Things I am Currently Boycotting a couple of weeks ago. One of my friends mentioned Papa John’s in the comments. Papa John’s is another sort of edge case for me; I generally avoid eating there but that’s as much because my aging digestive system can no longer handle their garlic sauce (which is absolutely essential to the Papa John’s experience; do not insult me by suggesting that I can eat their pizza without drenching it in garlic sauce) than it is because of their politics.

That said, I’ve been craving the damn place ever since reading that comment. It’s a terrible idea, so we haven’t caved, but it’s been lurking there in the back of my head.

We decided on the way home from getting groceries that we’d have pizza for dinner, as there were supposed to be two pizzas in our order. Then we got home and discovered that one of them wasn’t there, presumably because they were out of stock on that specific kind of pizza.

Damn. We briefly discuss other options, and Papa’s comes up, and I shoot it down, because it’s a terrible idea. And then I interrupt the conversation to go use the bathroom, and while I’m in the bathroom I hear my son yell for my wife from our other bathroom. And when I come out, she tells me that I have something I need to deal with in the other bathroom.

And, well, a minute or two later, after seeing what I had been summoned for, I sent this text:

If you’re thinking “Okay, this sounds like that happened, but the size of a baseball? It has to be something else.” No, it doesn’t. That’s what happened.

I have about an hour to get my affairs finished off for the evening before I begin paying for dinner.

8:45 PM, Friday May 8: 1,283,846 confirmed cases and 77,178 American deaths.


We hadn’t stopped working; I just decided a few days ago that I wasn’t doing any more updates until shit looked good.

Shit looks good.

IMG_2814Another look at the shower tile (finished over winter break) and the new toilet.  The new toilet is wonderful.  If you shit God, God will be flushed.  As a fat man, I appreciate this.  The new toilet is not leaking.  Did I ever show you the new floor tile?  That’s not leaking either, but tile generally doesn’t do that.

IMG_2819The new vanity and countertop.  This… is a bit more of a problem.  Everything you can see is not leaking, is hooked up, and works beautifully.  Note that I also put new floor trim in, although you can’t see it too well.  It’s just trim; trim’s not actually terribly impressive.  But it’s there!


Closeup of the countertop and the new faucet.  I love this countertop a LOT.  I’m also glad that the vanity is taller than the old one, because it means that the boy’s going to have to grow a bit before he’s tall enough to splash water out of the sink, and hopefully by then he’ll be less likely to wantonly splash stuff around.  Yes, the distance from the faucet to the electrical outlet is within code; yes, I’m also putting safety stops into the outlets when they’re not being used.

IMG_2817This shit right here is not my fault.  And it’s leaking.  (And it’s better than it looks, because that one PVC join that is obviously crooked is not crooked any longer.)  The supply lines to the faucet are working beautifully and appear to be watertight; the rest of it, not so much.

Basically it’s leaking at the one spot that is obviously bad, which does not surprise me, as joining those two pipes in that fashion was basically a kludge involving crossed fingers.  The PVC-galvanized join is strong and so is the join where the trap joins with the pipe coming out of the wall.  I need to talk to some folks who know better than me and come up with something better than the kludge.  I also need to fix a new leak that popped up by the drain that wasn’t there originally, because in all the screwing around with the pipes I accidentally loosened the top (blue) pipe too much and now it’s leaking too.

I will wait a few days, do some research and some thinking, and then take another shot at this, and if I can’t get it right the second time I’ll just suck it up and call a plumber.  I’m not actually upset about this; it’s leaking at a spot that I knew was dodgy and it’s not leaking enough that it renders the sink unusable.  If I need to wash my hands or my face in that sink, it’ll be fine; the pot underneath will catch the small amount of water that comes out.  I just want it perfect.

Later this week, we’ll get into what Phase 3 entails.  Phase 3 is the final phase.