What Brought You Here?

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Urban Survival for Complete Imbeciles

First and Foremost! I want to disclaim that the situation you are about to read (about?) is not my fault. The place had shitty plumbing when I moved in- generally taking 3-4 flushes to quaff a modest amount of toilet paper. I never challenged it with female products, I quit feeding it paper towels long ago, and eventually put it on the "paperless diet". It's gotten to the point where I'm happy to see it even dilute my urine in a single flush. At any rate, now that we've clarified who the victim is here. . .

Never, ever, ever assume that all brands of drain opener are the same and thoroughly compatible. Apparently, while one major brand is made of hydrochloric acid (which begs the question of what use it is in declogging a major case of bulimic toilet), others are made out of sodium hypochlorite. Which may be a base, or it may actually be the same thing in colloquial chemistry-speak. Yeah, I don't know.

All I know is that I'm so paranoid about accidentally creating a chemical bomb that I hadn't dranoed my bathtub in a year fearing the implications of hydrochloric acid mixing with any lingering molecules of dried on clean shower spray, or- god forbid- soap scum.

I finally got around to tackling my own stagnant drains when I found myself still standing in yellow water at the end of my shower and several weeks after I quit my first-world habit of trying to flush toilet paper down the loo. Hell, I even tried limiting my butter consumption It seemed to alleviate the issue to some degree, but frankly I feel that the goodness of real butter cannot be measured in plumber's labor hours.

Since I became semi-obsessed with household accidents (and germ transmission) a year or so ago, I had no fewer than three 1/2 to 7/8 used jugs of "U-bend Blaster," "Theta Pi Omega's Party Punch Concentrate" and "Facelift Strength Formula". As I recall, I used one in the shower and the content of the other two in the toilet. I must have lucked out and used the two compatible chemicals in the toilet.

Unfortunately, they didn't work. The water was still foamy with caustic goodness after many, many flushes and the dumping of much hot water. Eventually I had to break the cardinal rule against plunging a pipe full of caustic chemicals. I had to, though- see, I really had to pee and I didn't know how my sweet kidney juice would interact with the remaining drain-opening bubbles.

Unfortunately, this really has not resolved my problem. True, I can once more pee in the shower, but that's not always feasible. I don't think I can quite bring myself to defecate in the bathtub. Perhaps that should go directly into the plastic TP bag.


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