Angelina Versus The Broken Faucet

broken faucetIt is a well known fact of the universe that things break when:

You can’t afford to fix them

In threes

When you are most emotionally crippled

When there is maximum chaos in your life

Several days ago this kitchen faucet broke. Philip tried to fix it. He discovered that one of the shut-off valves under the sink doesn’t work which complicates the process of fixing it. So we decided we would just buy a new faucet and pay a plumber to come fix it. The next day I had to do dishes in my bathtub. But before I could do that I had to clean up the massive trash evisceration I came home to. The trash was left out from under the sink and the dog got bored. But before I could clean up the trash I had to change out of my rain soaked clothes because it was pouring on my way home from work.

I changed out of my clothes and sat around for two hours trying to psyche myself up to face the trash which Chick thoughtfully dragged through the living room and bedroom. I finally picked that all up and realized that I couldn’t do anything else until I’d mopped the floor. But to mop the floor I really needed to clean the bathroom. Also – if you’re going to do your dishes in your bathtub you don’t want the toilet to be grimy because you’ll see it out of the corner of your eye and you’ll never trust that the dishes got really clean. So I had to clean the whole bathroom and then mop the floors and THEN do dishes in my tub. By the time I did that I was so tired I took Max out to eat even though by now we’d realized that after paying all our bills and the mortgage we were getting low-ish on funds. Facing Max’s birthday weekend meant other meals out so in the end it became clear that we could not afford a plumber. Just the faucet.

under the sink sitchSo yesterday was my first day off after a grueling week at work and I spent the whole day watching kitchen faucet replacement videos and going to Home Depot to get the replacement, a basin wrench, and silicone sealant.

First thing I discover is that Philip was right about one of the shut-off valves beingĀ  broken. This necessitated shutting off the water to the whole house which, because I wasn’t sure if we had one I could shut off myself, necessitated calling the water department and waiting for their guy to show up and show me how unnecessary it was for him to come out and turn my water off.

I unscrewed the nuts connecting the old faucet to the water supply. It was just as easy as all the videos suggested it would be. The next step was to unscrew the nut holding the faucet to the underside of the sink. But there was no nut on mine. It looks nothing like ANY of the videos I watched. This is the THING I had to grapple with:

Satan designed thisAfter 45 minutes trying to use the useless basin wrench to budge this motherfucker I had to give up. Max was starting to feel like the broken faucet and lack of water to the house was infringing on his birthday celebration. It was. So I headed out to Home Depot to ask them what the hell this THING is and how to remove it and then off to get Max his cupcakes and other treats. Home Depot guy doesn’t know what the hell this is. So I ask him to show me how to cap off the water supply line with the broken shut-off so I can turn the house water back on, celebrate my kid’s birthday, and come back to this mess later. 60 hundred hours later…

dirty broken faucetLet’s not discuss how two Safeways let my boy down by not having his favorite cupcakes, how I now have this hideous unbudging mess in my kitchen. Seriously, gross. And I realize I haven’t eaten since breakfast. Note to plumbing newbies like me:


I managed to get Max his favorite cookie and frosting sandwiches from Sift which made him happy, hung out and watched him play one of his new video games, and opened presents and then I made him onion rings at 10pm. I was one exhausted human. I went to sleep with a leaky valve under my sink. I slept relatively well, for me.

I had secretly prayed that the broken faucet would be taken home to hell in Satan’s arms so that I could get on with installing the new faucet. No such luck.

the nut to bustOver coffee this morning I have come to believe that this nut (pictured above) is the one to crush. I actually attempted to loosen it for 30 minutes last night to no avail. But I think I was trying to do it the wrong direction. So when I’m done drinking my courage in a cup and after I get dressed in grimy clothes I’m going to try this one more time. Failing this?



4 thoughts on “Angelina Versus The Broken Faucet

  1. Tonia

    Aaaaaarrrrrggghhhhhh! I am sooooo sorry to hear you are having to deal with plumbing hell. I went through plumbing issues about a month ago. Found a leak in the kitchen that had been steadily doing its thing for who knows how long. I saw it only because I thought I might paint the inside of a cupboard (at 10 o clock at night on a Sunday night…) I saw and smelled mildew. I did dishes for almost a week in big plastic totes (boiled water filled tote A, washed dishes, rinsed in tote B out on the back deck. I did not want to use bathtub because did not want clean bathroom. Jack has a friend who is a plumber and he and Jack fixed it when he had the time. I don’t know how I would have paid for it otherwise. I hope it is or gets resolved very soon!

  2. angelina Post author

    Oh my God! I forgot I didn’t post the results. This has become a bad habit of mine. We got the new one installed but it took both Philip and I to do it. I’ll have to post the result for you.

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