Making up some new acronyms for us:

DIY: Do It Yourself
DIWYF: Do It With Your Friend
DIWAP: Do It With A Professional
and, finally,

WDYDI: Why Did You Do It?!

I had the blog post written in my head. The long, stirring saga of how I tried to fix the shower leak myself, but then I had some trouble, so when Todd was here for a visit, I begged for his help.

He looks knowledgeable.
He looks knowledgeable.

Let’s climb in the shower and solve this puzzle!

We were so happy with our short-lived success.
We were so happy with our short-lived success.

We watched a youtube video or two then figured it out.

Or, so I thought.

A few days later…still leaking.

So, I trolled around on the internet and found Pretty Handy Girl, who happens to be the daughter of one of our acquaintances from our old church in VA. Reading Brittany’s shower fixing blog post inspired me to keep trying.

I took apart the shower handles, and took the parts with me to Home Depot.

Home Depot did not have the parts I needed. (Old house, old shower handles. Home Depot not going to be able to help.)

The helpful plumbing man at Home Depot sent me to ABC Plumbing Supply Store. “They’ll have what you need.”

They didn’t.

But, one of the plumbers who was in the shop getting supplies looked at my pipes and said, “Sullivan Eastside Plumbing. That’s where you’ll need to go for Sterling parts.”

Going into the plumbing supply stores was a pleasure for me. I went on so many jobs with my dad when I was a kid, and I always loved going into these stores with their jumble of shelves. I was always the only girl, and everyone was so friendly. We’d often get a pop from a machine that looked like this:

Pop your top.
Pop your top.

It felt like visiting a beloved museum.

Off I went to Joe B. Sullivan Eastside Plumbing. It’s an institution. Been around for a very long time. The shelves look like they are ready to topple. The fellow who was unpacking boxes and hunted up the parts I needed just seemed to know where everything was. I attempted to engage him in conversation, hoping he’d want to walk down memory lane with me, talking about our dads and plumbing jobs of the past.

Didn’t happen.

But, he did have what I needed.

He wrote up my ticket on a piece of paper, I paid with cash, and then headed out the door, back to the 21st century.

Drove home, put in all the parts, turned on the water…no drips!

So happy, so thrilled. Patting myself on the back for all the money I’d saved.

The next morning, Buds and I headed to the garage for a workout just as Yessa got in the shower in our bathroom.

Water raining down into the garage below the shower.


Admitting DIYD (Do It Yourself Defeat), I called up our plumber, and they sent out a guy.

I still wanted to understand what was going, so gently inquired of the fellow (Scout, we’ll call him.) if he minded if I watched and learned.

“As long as I’m not taking a shower, you can be in here with me.”

Fair enough.

To bring things to their unhappy ending for this chapter of the saga, Scout fixed things gingerly, but it turns out the pipe was shaved down on one side, probably when installed, and that edge has gotten so thin it tears the rubber gaskets right away.


The picture above doesn’t show much, but it looks like a scary eyeball, which is how I feel about that shower now, so I included it.

Scout fixed things as best he could, using the parts I’d already purchased, and then told me, “It will leak again. To truly stop the leak, you are going to have to switch out the pipes.”

We used the shower for about a month before it started raining into the garage again.

So, for now, our shower is a dry, unused room. The cost to take out the pipes makes it nonsensical to do until we are ready to tear out the whole bathroom.

And, given enough time to forget my bad memories, I’ll probably decide I can do at least some of the rehab myself.

What could possibly go wrong?