Oct 24, 2005

Erik and CS posing as handymen, few injured.

This weekend came upon me with great bouts of masculinity, or so I hoped. CS bought a nice new dishwasher and needed help installing it. The plan was to have RO come by with his truck, pick up the dishwasher and the Jiggaman's TV, then move the stuff into CS's place. RO bailed so CS found another truck to borrow and the task fell upon him and I.

We first picked up the dishwasher. A nice dishwasher for sure; however the installment became a chore I did not foresee. We got the dishwasher up the three flights of stairs with a handtruck we conveniently "borrowed" from the hardware store. We then removed the old dishwasher which went fairly smoothly. Damn that thing is old. CS found out the thing was built in 1979.

The installment of the new dishwasher tested my patience to no end. I figured out the wiring which was easy. There are only two water lines, one for incoming and the other for outgoing, which again was simple. The real dilemma was hooking up the incoming copper tube. The old dishwasher had a larger thread hole then the new one. The copper tube is not flexible as you can imagine.

To make matters worse the builders of the condo decided to install the baseboard heater just a foot away from the dishwasher which was placed right up against the wall. Moving the unit into place became a test of endurance. We scratched the living hell out of the side of the door.

We moved the dishwasher in and realized the mount on the copper tube would not fit on the dishwasher so we had to move it back out. We talked in a very confused manner about what we were going to do. CS finally deducted that we could take the fitting off the copper tube and it should thread into the dishwasher. Success. However when we moved the dishwasher back in and turned the water on liquid started shooting out of it like a geyser.

CS found a neighbor who lent us plumbers tape, aka teflon tape. We moved the dishwasher back out and taped it up. Then we moved the dishwasher back in, all the while scraping the side of the door, and tested it. The leak was less, but it still gave water. We finally decided to give up and go get the TV.

We went back to my place with the truck and loaded the miserable TV with the kind help of the Jiggaman. CS was concerned that the TV would tip over in the back of the truck and wanted to ride in the back. I decided that I would do it considering my sense of direction back to CS's place was limited. This became an interesting ride.

I sat in the back which kind of felt nice considering the bed of the truck was warm. The drive line must be very close to the bed. After we started taking off the bed got warmer and warmer till finally I thought my ass was on fire. Convenient since the rest of me was freezing. On the average I felt pretty good.

After a miserable ride to CS's we contemplated how the two of us would handle getting this huge thing up three flights of stairs. This is an old 57 inch television which only should be moved by 4 people at least. CS recruited the same neighbor with the teflon tape. He and CS moved the front of the unit up the stairs while I sat back and took the weight on the back.

The last flight of stairs became a true test of strength. Both the neighbor and CS inched the TV up each step while I sat back and held the thing. We finally got the damn thing up there, but pain shot through my back something fierce.

We decided to tackle the dishwasher the next day. I went out that night and saw the pretty girl, played some pool by myself while another guy from the group sat in silence, and then went home.

The next day CS picked me up and we went to Lowe's for supplies. I had the bright idea of getting rope to pull the tubing through the wall. I'm pretty proud of that idea.

We went back to CS's and moved the dishwasher out again. We taped the threads and CS put on almost an entire roll of tape around the base of the nuts. We moved the until back in and turned on the water. The leak was less then before; however the it was still there.

Again we moved the dishwasher out and CS went back to taping. We then moved it back in again and gave it the ol college try. Ye Gods the leak was still there.

CS contacted the friendly neighbor and he gave us insulated tubing to replace the copper hose. Moving the dishwasher again we taped up the threads, replaced the tubing, moved it back in and turned on the water. It worked. A great sigh of accomplishment came over us. We were so damn estatic.

We went outside and talked about what we did wrong and how we could do it better if there is a next time god forbid. We bitched and moaned about the miserable heater being placed so inconveniently. CS went in to see if the dishwasher door could actually open all the way. He opened it and sure enough it would only move down about 1/4 of the way before it hit the heater. He looked back at me and I gave an almost sad laugh to the whole ridiculousness of it.

Overall I'm still proud we did it. We learned a lot and we did not suffer 3rd degree electrical burns. I love that feeling of accomplishment when I install something. I wanted to go light a barbecue and grill beef while drinking beer all the while being surrounded by bikini models. Yes that is how I feel when I do a handyman chore.

I went and saw the pretty girl afterwards. It was a good weekend. I got to play with tools, wire appliances, use muscle in moving stuff, solve the puzzle that is plumbing, then got to see the pretty girl. I couldn't have asked for a better time. Okay I could have been skydiving in a tropical setting, but my time was well spent.

"Men weren't really the enemy - they were fellow victims suffering from an outmoded masculine mystique that made them feel unnecessarily inadequate when there were no bears to kill." - Betty Friedan

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