Things I’m Not Good At

Bill Plays Bathroom Roulette

Tuesday, March 27th, 2012

"Bill Playing Bathroom Roulette"



“My head missed the toilet bowl by a hair,” Bill says. “If my head had hit it, it could have killed me.”

Bill has opened the door from his studio that leads into my house. He’s standing in the doorway just looking at me.

He looks like he has a confession. He does.

“Yeah?” I say. “What? What are you talking about?”

“When I cleaned the bathroom yesterday morning,” he says, “the mop fell sideways to the floor, right in front of the toilet. I let it lie. I thought, ‘I’ll remember it’s there.'” (more…)

The Best Job to Have

Tuesday, February 14th, 2012


Jim in his kitchen.

Today I am trying to learn the cash register at my brother’s stationary mobile kitchen and I charge an old man $776.00 for his hamburger.

I tell him I’m truly sorry but he is not happy about it.

I tell him this is my first day, that I am helping my brother by learning how to take orders for meals. That sometimes Jim needs extra help when he gets really busy and since I work for free he will be calling on me.

Now I can’t get the cash drawer open. The ten dollar bill the old fellow is trying to give me flies off the counter and out the counter window and sticks to the old fellow’s gray sweatered chest.

I reach out and peel the bill off him. (more…)

How I Blew Up My Bathroom Sink

Tuesday, February 7th, 2012


"My Bathroom Sink Before I Blew It Up."

This morning I’ve blown my bathroom sink apart.

It is quite a surprise.

Here’s how it goes.

I have an art deco type, fluted glass sink. It sits on top of the tiled bathroom counter and is pleasing to look at. It is moulded to look like a huge, luminous blue flower rising open-mouthed toward the indifferent burnished copper faucet above it.

The sink was very expensive. It makes a statement. It makes the bathroom. It’s a beautiful and wondrous and overpriced extravagance but everybody needs at least one outrageous, nonsensical, illogical extravagance don’t you think?

I have to stand on my toes to use this sink  and even then I often clank my elbows on its undulating glass edges.

Its lithe inner neck is attached to a pipe and hidden under the countertop but like an unrelenting sinus condition the pipe is always clogged.

The sink is a gorgeous delicate Being, but I don’t like it. It is uncomfortable to use and it barely drains. Nothing I’ve used clears the blockages and I’ve even used human plumbers.

This morning I have had enough of the sink’s peculiarities and quirks. I have in hand a very large jug of poison gel that is guaranteed to scrub clean the most recalcitrant pipes.

The instructions say to pour the burning goo down the drain and let it sit for one half hour. Then I am instructed to run hot water down the pipe.

This is a problem.

I can never get the water to run long enough to get it hot enough because the water won’t drain from the beautiful sink. The water fills to the brim and then sits sullenly, threatening to rush over the lips of the blue beauty.

But…suddenly, I have an excellent and even brilliant idea. I will heat the water on the kitchen stove and pour that down the drain. (more…)

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