This morning I had to stop a leak. No, I did not say “take.” I definitely said, “stop.” I was just awaking from a sleepy morning listening to the thunder and the rain pouring outside. I had no place to go or nothing to do but to lie in bed and listen to the end of the world as it provided a nice white noise for a sleepy morning. All I needed was a teddy bear hugging my neck and it would have been the perfect storm.
My eyes slowly opened. Just narrow little slits large enough to let in a little light, enough light to see the rain pouring down the side of my bedroom window. BUT WAIT! It’s pouring down the INSIDE of the window. Oh Noooooo! I’m up in a flash and there is spattered water everywhere, especially on my little wire tray in which I keep all the electronics—my phone, the remotes for the TV and cable and the thingie that makes the bed go up and down. Oh Noooooo!
This happened once before when the storm was particularly heavy and the wind was blowing it against the house. I had to hurry and find towels and narrow containers to line the windowsill. I told myself then that when the first dry day came I would have to hire someone with a two-story ladder to climb up and caulk the window frame from the outside. But I never did and now here it was happening all over again. I was paying for my procrastination and forgetfulness. Woe is me. Woe is a wet me.
I had no choice. I reached for the gun as I sang “the gun the gun the gun, oh yes, we both reached for the gun.” (We Both Reached for the Gun, from the Broadway musical, Chicago). In this case it was the caulking gun that, ironically, was in the master bath, on the floor in the corner, brand new and waiting for the shower stall to dry so I could fix a flapping piece of caulk along the bottom edge of the shower wall. I yelled at someone to bring me the caulking gun (the gun the gun, etc). I know, you can’t caulk onto a wet surface, especially a flowing wet surface. But hey, I felt like the little Dutch kid with his finger in the dyke. I was desperate.
I cut the tip off the caulking canister and put it into the gun. (still singing…the gun the gun, etc). I was locked and loaded. I reached up and began pulling the trigger. There was caulk spewing out all over the top inside of the window frame. I was making sure I was getting a lot spread around and covering all the leaks and then adding multiple layers. Next came the hair dryer (I could have said “hair gun”). I needed to dry the caulk as fast as possible. I was manipulating tools like a seasoned surgeon performing the most intricate surgery and all the nurses and other OR staff were standing around observing in amazement my expert dexterity. Oh the humanity!
Next came the argument. ARGUMENT! This is no time for an argument. I had the hair dryer set high on “hot.” My wife said that was wrong; it had to be on “cool.” I said “hot,” she said “cool.” We volleyed that back and forth a few times and I gave in (always do…wuss). I set the dryer on cool and I spent the next ten minutes waving it over and over and over all the caulking. So far no water was dripping down the inside of the window anymore. I says to meself, “I wonder where all that water is going? Hmmmm.” Slowly new little leaks started working their way out of the yet-to-be-dry caulk.
I run to the garage and headed for all the plastic shoeboxes that have stuff in them. I look for the one with the label, “String, Tape and Wire.” Don’t you marvel at how compulsively organized I am. TAPE! That’s it. I have Gorilla Tape. Yes!
Back to the window I go with Gorilla Tape in hand. I am hoping this stuff is as good as the tape that guy on TV uses to tape his boat back together after he saws it in half. It seams to work, but I have to keep putting new pieces on as the water works it way around each barrier it confronts until it finds a breach to exploit. Slowly my window turns black with strip after strip of Gorilla Tape. Meanwhile, thank God, the wind is lessening and the rain is subsiding…enough that it isn’t blowing against the window as hard as it was. I’m thinkin’ I’m good, at least good enough to fight another day. It’s the calm after the storm…all is well again.
But if I am smart this time, I will hire a handi-gorilla with a two-story ladder and a caulking gun (last time…the gun the gun, etc.) and up he’ll go up the ladder to fix the leak from the OUTSIDE of the window. Yeah, that’ll take care of my leaky window once and for all. And, oh yeah, I should maybe get myself a teddy bear too.