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Second-world problems - Lindsey Kuper [entries|archive|friends|userinfo]
Lindsey Kuper

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Second-world problems [Nov. 2nd, 2010|10:45 pm]
Lindsey Kuper

As Alex reported, we discovered a leaky pipe above our kitchen a couple of evenings ago. We were hanging around the house as we usually do on Sunday night when I looked up and saw that water was dripping from the kitchen ceiling.

Last January, we had a pipe burst in roughly the same place while we were away on vacation, and the result from the four days of water damage was that a piece of our house needed to be ripped out and replaced. It was kind of a low point for Alex and me. Whenever we've hit bumps in our lives since then, I've always thought to myself, "Well, at least this is nowhere near as bad as last January!" and felt better. But when I saw that water dripping from the ceiling, I was suddenly afraid that it was about to get as bad as last January, and, briefly, I despaired.

But then we grabbed a wrench, went out to the front yard, found the the water main shutoff valve (which, far from being located at "the most inaccessible spot behind stickery bushes", is in fact right in the middle of the yard in a rather convenient manhole), and turned off the water to our house. It was almost like we're competent adults or something! Then we called our landlord, who came over a few minutes later bearing Halloween treats and apologies, despite it being almost midnight. So that was nice.

Not having running water in our house is inconvenient, but it hasn't been as bad as you might imagine. I've been brushing my teeth at school; I was able to take a shower at the running store after our running club meetup yesterday1; and this evening we turned the water back on for an hour or so in order to take showers and make dinner.

Still, I'll be happy when the water works again. The plumber's supposed to show up tomorrow morning, and we'll see what happens. The dripping stopped shortly after we shut off the water main, and the ceiling feels dry at this point -- let's hope that there's no significant damage!


  1. We've been going on runs with a group that meets at Indiana Running Company every Monday and Thursday. The group runs have been great for me; I go a little faster and further than I would otherwise, and the people are fun and interesting to talk to. More to the point, though: how cool is it that the running store let me use their shower? For one thing, it's awesome that they have a shower; it means that they know that their employees are active people with busy lives, and they care about their employees being able to combine their workout with their commute or with their lunch break or what have you. Providing a shower for employee use is a great thing for any employer to do. And furthermore, they let me use it! They didn't have to do that; I'm not even a customer -- I'm just someone who comes to running meetups. But the next time I want to buy some running gear, I'll definitely be going to them first.
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Comments:
[User Picture]From: underwhelm
2010-11-03 02:51 am (UTC)
You don't have a valve inside the house? Do you not have a basement? Home construction outside of Minnesota confuses me.
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[User Picture]From: lindseykuper
2010-11-03 02:53 am (UTC)
Of course we have a basement! This is still the Midwest! (Sort of.) But for some reason the valve is located in a manhole in the front yard rather than in the basement. It's possible that there's actually a valve in the basement, too, I suppose, but damned if I can figure out where it is.
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[User Picture]From: oniugnip
2010-11-03 02:59 am (UTC)
We looked for a while :-\

Maybe I'm just not super-smart about plumbing.
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[User Picture]From: underwhelm
2010-11-03 03:03 am (UTC)
Well, I wouldn't rule out not having one inside... I have one on both sides of the water meter, which is also inside, just after the pipe comes into the basement. I suppose if your meter is outside, that's where your valves are, too?

But were I plumbing a house, I'd put an extra valve inside for good measure! ???
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[User Picture]From: lindseykuper
2010-11-03 03:07 am (UTC)
Yup, the water meter is outside, and the valves are on either side of it. That way, potential meter readers don't have to come inside the house. But, yeah, a valve inside sure would have been convenient.

I'm amused how you're more interested in the location of our water shutoff valve than in anything else I wrote about. Your homeownership is showing!
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[User Picture]From: keystricken
2010-11-03 02:56 pm (UTC)
It was almost like we're competent adults or something!

I always get a little thrill whenever this happens to me. Well done! And congratulations on avoiding another disaster.
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[User Picture]From: lindseykuper
2010-11-03 08:54 pm (UTC)
Thanks! We now have running water again, and aside from a small square hole that the plumber cut in the kitchen ceiling, everything is normal. I expect Ceiling Cat to make his appearance any minute now.
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[User Picture]From: keystricken
2010-11-03 08:55 pm (UTC)
I can't quite recall, but there's supposed to be something you can do to get his attention...
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[User Picture]From: lyceum_arabica
2010-11-03 04:45 pm (UTC)
they've actually got showers in the basement of the CS building here ;-)
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[User Picture]From: lyceum_arabica
2010-11-04 05:11 pm (UTC)

(correlations, and unrelated)

(...the implication being that there's strong enough correlation between CS people and people who are athletic enough to end up needing a shower at work that they actually stuck it into the building requirements when they built a new building. you guys are a demographic :-) )

Also, I recently realized that I have a strange and poorly defined question about functional programming language theory/research that I'd like to ask you about. Up for coffee sometime?
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[User Picture]From: lindseykuper
2010-11-04 06:06 pm (UTC)

Re: (correlations, and unrelated)

Of course! I'd be up for coffee even if you didn't want to talk about PL research. What you should really do is come hang out with us in Indy this weekend after we run the (half) marathon.
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[User Picture]From: lyceum_arabica
2010-11-04 06:57 pm (UTC)

Re: (correlations, and unrelated)

(grins) I'd love to, but I think mark and i are going to be safely nestled in lafayette, cramming on various large piles of school work/research (engineering schools are somehow *vastly* more time-consuming than my previous experience). But i'll be around bton next weekend, and I should have time free for coffee :-)
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