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No Help To The Unhandy

, , , , , | Working | March 21, 2023

I am NOT handy around the house. I can do the bare minimum of replacing toilet seats, replacing doorknobs, hanging pictures, etc. But I loathe doing such things. Plumbing I really hate as it makes me nervous when things leak water. (Several incidents involving plumbing accidents in the house contributed to the trauma.)

We had a spray nozzle on our sink that began to leak badly. My son bought us a new nozzle, but I had to put it together and install it. So, I took a deep breath and began assembling it. When I finished and hooked it up, it sprayed, but it leaked. No matter what I did, I could not find the source of the leak. I assumed I’d put it together wrong.

A friend suggested I go to a local plumbing supply store and ask one of the guys there if they had any suggestions; maybe I was missing a washer or something. I’m not very comfortable in such places, and despite being a middle-aged man, I don’t think I give off a “Mr. Fix-it” vibe.

I went into the store with the nozzle in hand, approached one of the employees, and briefly explained the context. He was incredibly condescending.

Me: “I have this spray nozzle that I’ve put together, but it still leaks. Could you suggest anything I might use to deal with the leak?”

The employee barely glanced at the nozzle.

Employee: “The only thing you can do is contact the original manufacturer of your sink. This nozzle won’t work.”

Me: “The sink is over thirteen years old. I don’t even remember who we got the sink from. Can’t I just adjust this nozzle?”

Again, he didn’t really look at the nozzle.

Employee: “No, these things are customized to the sinks. You need to contact the manufacturer.”

Me: *Getting a little frustrated* “You mean there’s nothing I can do except contact the manufacturer? I mean, in this whole store, there’s nothing that can help with this.”

Employee: “That’s the way it is.”

I was not happy. I didn’t expect him to play plumber, but he could have at least looked at the nozzle. It was obvious to me that he’d sized me up as a know-nothing (not really inaccurate) and didn’t want to be bothered with my penny-ante problem.

I left and called a plumber. He came the next day and I gave him the nozzle. Fifteen minutes later, he had it working and not leaking.

Me: “That was fast. What was wrong with it?”

Plumber: “Nothing really. Everything was put together fine; I just needed to tighten everything up.”

The nozzle has worked fine ever since. I still loathe plumbing.

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