An Open Letter to the Guy Who Installed My Downstairs Toilet Flush Assembly

Listen up pal, because I have an important question to ask you: are you a comedian or a moron?  Don’t bother protesting, because after the two hour shitshow that was me removing your work and installing my own, I know you must be one or the other.  Frankly, I’m leaning towards comedian at the moment for two reasons: 1) I imagine you had a good laugh at the thought of me trying to fix your work and 2) in order to so thoroughly fuck up such a simple bit of home improvement work you would have to be SO FUCKING DUMB that you would likely be in state’s custody somewhere instead of in my downstairs bathroom installing a leaky flush assembly.

You must have shaking with anticipation as you thought of me slowly starting to notice that the valve didn’t seal every other time the toilet was flushed.  You pictured me sitting there on my couch, freshly returned from the restroom, cozily settled in to play some Mario as I watch episode after episode of The Wire.  Slowly, gradually, the sound of the water still running in the toilet tank begins to pierce my consciousness.  Your glee grows.  Finally, I beat a level and with my intense focus dissipated, the burbling stream breaks through to my mind and I realize what’s happening.  ”How long has it been?,” I think, “surely just a few seconds…no, I beat a whole level….fuck.”  You are vibrating violently with your fit of giggles.  I wait a few more moments, desperately hoping that the sound will stop.  Of course, it does not.  As I leap up, uttering the foulest string of epithets I can muster, you fall down, your laughter overtaking you.  At least, that’s what I was picturing during the hour and a half it took me to saw through the bolt and handle you attached.

That’s right, you saved the best gag for last, didn’t you motherfucker?  You waited until I had become exasperated enough to solve the problem and motivated enough to go to the store for a new assembly.  As I was picking out the fancy dual-flush kit, just the thing to help save water in this time of drought, I thought to myself how nice it would be that with a simple 30 minute install I could finally be rid of the obnoxious ghost flushing.  ”It’s so easy,” I chastised myself, “I should have just done this weeks ago.”  Little did I know at the time, I was more wrong about that than you were in your assessment of your own ability to install a simple piece of fucking plumbing.  I learned of my mistake as I lifted the lid from the toilet tank to begin my installation.  Following the instructions from the kit I acquired, I drained the tank, removed the old flapper, removed the fill valve, and then set my sights on the handle.  Trusty wrench in hand, I give the nut a turn – but it won’t budge.  I grab the handle and brace myself for a push, because what the hell, I’m throwing this thing away anyways.

*grip* *HRRRRRRNNNNGGGGGHHHHH* *SNAP*

The handle breaks off.  I now spot your final folly, and immediately I know I’ve been fucked.  You know what I’m talking about, of course.  You have to.  Because, as I opined earlier, only someone in need of constant 24-hour supervision from a trained psychiatrist would be fuck-witted enough to accidentally fasten a metal bolt with a metal nut IN A TANK THAT IS CONSTANTLY FILLED WITH WATER.  You, being you, are completely aware that hardware stores carry plastic nuts for literally this exact goddamn application, but of course that wasn’t your style.  No, your style was to use a material which, in the presence of water, is known to fuse to itself like glue and then leave it in a tank of water for me to find in 20 years.  Your final glorious touch was to do this all on a bolt with no head, not even a slightly flatter region, on which to grip.  After all, you wouldn’t want a little torque ruining your giant middle finger flying back from the past to poke me in the eye.

But you know what? FUCK YOUR LITTLE RUSTY RIDDLE.  All the WD-40 and CLR in the world wouldn’t have done me any good, so I borrowed a page from Alexander the Great and took my trusty hacksaw to your Gordian Knut.

I took me an hour and a half, and I’m pretty sure I ruined a saw blade, but I cut that bastard out of there.  And after I did, I installed my fancy new assembly in 30 minutes and now my toilet doesn’t leak anymore.  I suppose you got your kicks after all, and there’s nothing I can do to take that back, but at least I don’t have to hear you snickering at me every time the toilet flushes at 3:30 in the morning.

You Are A Huge Asshole, Sincerely,

Justin Mead

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