Did Iron John Do Plumbing?

July 3, 2007

I love my husband for many reasons, but chief among those reasons is this: he’s a manly man.

He’s the kind of guy who you know could totally protect you in the wilderness, or in the aftermath of a nuclear attack (which you survived because he’s the type of guy who could build a bomb shelter, by hand, if there were any real threat of nuclear attack, which there’s not, so stop giving me nightmares already. I lost enough sleep in the eighties, thank you very much.) He can guide rafts through white-water rapids, he can fight forest fires, he can building a cabin, he drinks scotch and beer and mixes obscure cocktails involving onions and tabasco. He drives an old Saab that he loves because it has rocket engineering. He knows how to tie complicated knots, the kind that you need to know how to tie on boats, and dreams of sailing around the world on a tall ship. He gets his hair cut by a Portuguese barber, the kind with a really sharp razor and an attitude. He likes attitude, but only in old men from old countries, and not from disaffected youth, who he thinks should just pull up their saggy pants already.

There’s not the faintest whiff of metrosexual about him (okay, maybe a wee poof around the designer eyeglass frames), even though he works in television, which should give him a free pass to be as fussy and glossy as he wants to be. But he doesn’t want to be, not at all, and I love that about him.

What I’m not loving so much, right this minute – though I hasten to add that this unlove is not directed at him – is the fact that my manly man decided to rip apart our bathroom this weekend and not put it back together again. Because, you know, he didn’t sign up for the plumbing and now the weekend’s over and hey! Look! Over there! Isn’t that a commercial that needs shooting? Exit Her Bad Father, stage right, leaving his tools and pipes and miscellaneous man-crap in a manly death-trap behind him.

Now we have this, where my bathtub is supposed to be:

And instead of a toilet:

Which means that our ablutions look something like this:


Which is – however convenient for photo opps – annoying in the extreme.

To be fair, he has called a contractor, who will, sometime this week, restore our bathroom and liberate us from the buckets.
In the meantime, I am reserving the right to love the man and disdain, for the moment, the manliness. Because you just know that if he were a metrosexual, and understood the joy of bath products (and, let’s face it, baths in general. Real men prefer showers, but will make do with buckets) this never would have happened.
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    { 49 comments }

    Smiling Mom July 3, 2007 at 10:25 pm

    I love it! WTF??

    Jezer July 3, 2007 at 10:40 pm

    Oh Holy Hell, forget a nuclear bomb, this shit is giving me nightmares. Please tell me your home has multiple bathrooms?

    canape July 3, 2007 at 10:54 pm

    I feel your pain. Except it is in the kitchen. With no ceiling. And no counters. And no cabinets. And lots of wires hanging down all around.

    It is frightening.

    Kai July 3, 2007 at 10:59 pm

    Oh your poor thing. I second Jezer’s comment. I hope you have another bathroom and are not actually resorting to buckets!

    Candygirlflies July 3, 2007 at 11:00 pm

    Okay, I’ve got One Of Those, too… and by that, I mean the burly-man husband who is “easily distracted”, shall we say.

    And I love him, which is Why I Stay.

    But, after fifteen years of marriage, I have officially christened him a “Handi-maniac”, and will not let him NEAR tools of any sort. That, plus I’ve also built an emergency fund into our budget, to cover any rescuing we require after he has tried to “fix” something… just in case.

    (Love you, honey, TRULY I do…)

    moosh in indy. July 3, 2007 at 11:12 pm

    Thank heavens for the bucket.

    AnotherMomCreation July 3, 2007 at 11:26 pm

    Ahhh too funny!
    My man is part manly man, part man, no part metrosexual… well ok maybe his Flamboyant “hairdresser” would disagree……

    Tracey July 3, 2007 at 11:57 pm

    I’m thinking you have only one bathroom?? The bucket would push me too far. I’m sorry. The baths, I could make do with a wet washcloth, but I need plumbing to poop.

    Bobita~ July 4, 2007 at 12:31 am

    Not in possession of a manly-man (shhhhh, don’t tell him I revealed the big secret!!), I can only giggle…because in my house, I’m the one who decides to remove bathtubs, tear out walls and otherwise fuck with the comfort of my family!! :) But, I can also program the DVD player and fix the air-conditioner. I am loved, albeit intermittently. heh.

    NotSoSage July 4, 2007 at 12:32 am

    I don’t know. Right now I’m thanking g*d for my metrosexual who I could easily outlast in the shower-free department (he wouldn’t stand for that mess for more than a day). Luckily, he’s Italian, so he also has a few skillz.

    I has a bucket. Brilliant.

    andi July 4, 2007 at 12:44 am

    So, so funny. I am in possession of a metrosexual myself. Although I do adore him (and can now see how the manly man can create problems), I could occasionally use a manly man for fixing of the plumbing, etc. Wanna trade for a few days so I can get some shit done around here?

    m July 4, 2007 at 1:46 am

    I love the word abulation, and my heart did a little cartwheel when I read this post. We’re renters so I’ve never experienced renos, but we’re planning on buying in our new city so your hell might become my reality. I just don’t know yet where my husband is on the burly/metrosexual spectrum. He’s a theatre artist so he can put on makeup but can also make a set. Should be interesting…

    And yes, I hope that contractor shows up asap!

    ewe are here July 4, 2007 at 7:03 am

    I has a bucket.

    hahahahahaha

    Hope you get your bathroom back soon. Buckets can get old real fast.

    crazymumma July 4, 2007 at 7:57 am

    When I read your post last week about the bathroom and then ran into you on the weekend, my spidey sense also told me that this post was forthcoming.

    I too have lived with the unlove at my manly man not finishing the bathroom.

    I know of what you speak….

    Beck July 4, 2007 at 7:57 am

    Yeah, we were there. WHILE I WAS PREGNANT. All three of the kids would have their baths in this enourmous vintage (from the 30s!) baby tub an aunt gave me.
    It sucked! It really really sucked!

    AndreAnna July 4, 2007 at 8:03 am

    I have a computer geek/boy scout hybrid with ADHD…which means, he’ll rip out the bathroom, try to wire a DVD player with internet into it, then get distracted by the cat or something shiny, and forget what he was doing…

    Sigh.

    LOL @ I has bucket.

    Christine July 4, 2007 at 8:07 am

    This made me laugh out loud this morning! Poor you! Cute bucket photo, though.

    Her Bad Mother July 4, 2007 at 8:10 am

    We do, in fact, have a powder room – so, yes, there is a toilet. BELIEVE ME this post would have been quite different had the man deprived us of a toilet.

    Amber July 4, 2007 at 8:23 am

    Never in all my days have I seen such quality Photoshop skills. Well, present company excluded. Maybe we should start a business together. :-)

    My sympathieson the state of your bathroom!

    Nancy July 4, 2007 at 9:37 am

    Your pictures and comments crack me up.

    I hope you’re not using buckets for, um, everything though. You do have at least a powder room, right??

    Bon July 4, 2007 at 11:33 am

    our house laughed because your house has the funny.

    O is jealous of WonderBaby’s bucket. he said “oh noes! iz mah bucket!!!!”

    it was tragic.

    Mimi July 4, 2007 at 11:44 am

    The bucket. OMG, the bucket.

    Your bathroom is an utter disaster. I am now officially grateful for my intact bathroom — it’s just tacky, but at least we’re not bathing in buckets.

    Yoiks.

    mamatulip July 4, 2007 at 11:57 am

    LMFAO. The pictures, the notes, the BUCKET…hysterical.

    Laural Dawn July 4, 2007 at 12:00 pm

    Like you, I am married to a manly man (who, however, dances to Abba) who would not understand that frustration. Case in point our half-painted house.
    We bought a “fixer-upper” which really needs a whole lot more fixing. I love him. Thank God.
    But there are days!!!!

    Magpie July 4, 2007 at 12:11 pm

    I think you’ve been reading Bossy too often!

    My husband ripped apart our powder room not so long ago – just for to paint it – it took rather a long time. The best part was the kid coming home and asking why the toilet was in the garage.

    mothergoosemouse July 4, 2007 at 12:43 pm

    I think it is time to check into a hotel. I mean, really – BUCKETS?!

    Liz July 4, 2007 at 12:47 pm

    When I read posts such as this, I thank my lucky stars that we rent and not own our apartment and that my husband is neither handy nor delusional.
    This, I believe, is chief among the reasons we are not destined to own our home. Who will we call when the toilet backs up?

    kittenpie July 4, 2007 at 1:55 pm

    Wait, are we married to the same man? We have been rebuilding our front porch for three summers running now…

    And HBF? Nice reciprocating saw! ;^)

    nomotherearth July 4, 2007 at 3:04 pm

    At the beginning of this post, I was so jealous of the manliness. When I saw the photos of the bathroom, though, I was very happy that Mr Earth is a theatre-lovin’ math geek.

    savia July 4, 2007 at 5:46 pm

    As long as there’s not a crab in the bucket (sorry, I couldn’t resist, and you’re Canadian, so you’ll get it.)

    Her Bad Mother July 4, 2007 at 5:54 pm

    Savia, dude, I not only get ‘crabs in the bucket,’ I sing it to her while she’s in it.

    Lawyer Mama July 4, 2007 at 7:45 pm

    WTF? We must be married to the same guy. Only mine refuses to call a contractor because he can do it “himself.” Ha! I had a claw foot bathtub residing in my living room for SIX MONTHS! Only when I threatened to turn it into a planter did it magically make its way into the bathroom.

    Hope you don’t have to, you know, pee in the bucket. I’ve been contemplating that in my office lately and I don’t relish the idea.

    painted maypole July 4, 2007 at 8:01 pm

    i can only imagine what else you need buckets for. So sorry.

    Karen July 4, 2007 at 8:47 pm

    That’s a nice bucket. The color is good, very beach house.
    Our move is two days away. The only thing we have left is the bathroom fixtures. Everything else is unhinged, completely.

    Little Monkies July 4, 2007 at 9:22 pm

    this happens in our house regularly…usually with me saying, midstream, “uh, honey, did you plan out what you were going to do because I’m worried that you aren’t…wait, why are you GLARING at me? I’m just worried because…LAST time you did this you…Fine! DO WHAT YOU WANT!”

    Then we are stuck with the bucket for weeks.

    I feel your pain, sistah.

    Sarah July 4, 2007 at 10:17 pm

    Love the sketches and the drawing on the pictures. Point those out to him next time he starts a project on the weekend!

    Emily July 5, 2007 at 1:54 am

    Oh, girl, I feel your pain. Had a DMZ in our bathroom for months when I was pregnant. Good thing a new Harry potter book came out, because he tiled while I read it to him and the stupid thing got finished.

    Since my husband would be useless at building a bomb shelter or foraging food, you did get the better end of the deal!

    Jay July 5, 2007 at 2:07 am

    I adore that you illustrated this for us. I never could have pictured it without them!

    dana July 5, 2007 at 12:52 pm

    Thank you for the photos. I’m going to pass them on to my huz because we need new bathroom fixtures, too. I will show him, “What not to do!” :)

    Her Bad Mother July 5, 2007 at 12:58 pm

    Emily – my husband would take ‘reading Harry Potter aloud’ as a threat. Which, come to think of it, just might work, if I promise to read it aloud every day that the bathroom DOESN’T get finished…

    Daisy July 5, 2007 at 2:08 pm

    My husband also works in television, also can fix just about anything, and will not touch plumbing. Electric? Fine. Yard work? No problem. Plumbing? He’ll curl up in a fetal position (in his manly jeans and t-shirt, of course) and rock.

    something blue July 5, 2007 at 2:36 pm

    What happens when a metrosexual takes on a bathroom? Come on over and see mine. I’m lucky that we sort of have walls, a tub and a toilet. Our bathroom reno started in the winter of 2005. Gah.

    I feel your pain.

    Formerly a Middle European Dyspeptic...without a blog but hope to get one soon. July 5, 2007 at 3:05 pm

    I admire your husband’s handyman prowess. Speaking as a tool challenged male, a major undertaking is hanging a picture straight and I don’t even qualify as a Metrosexual.

    I do think that Iron John did do plumbing — but with the appropriate chanting with this primal undertaking.

    Major Bedhead July 5, 2007 at 4:53 pm

    I hope you have a second toilet, at least, and aren’t also peeing (and pooping – ew) in a bucket. Because, ew. Just, ew.

    Animal July 5, 2007 at 8:08 pm

    Wow! And I thought I had it bad with renovation work here this summer! I never touch plumbing, though, so kudos to HBF.

    Interesting under where your tub should be: I see lath on the underside of the floor joists, but no plaster. What happened to the ceiling right UNDER that room?!?

    mo-wo July 6, 2007 at 1:02 am

    Oh Baby. I’m sorry. I took a deep gulp when you said you would go from merely wall-less to ‘further renovated’ over the holiday.

    May your contractors always be on time.
    May their labours be swift.
    Soon the flush and trickles might sing to you once more.

    leah July 6, 2007 at 1:16 am

    Thank heavens for handie men and handier men!

    Fairly Odd Mother July 8, 2007 at 8:12 am

    Our upstairs bathroom looks the same. My manly man took a sledgehammer to it a few months ago and it hasn’t changed since then. Fortunately, we have another one to use or I’d be in there connecting a toilet myself.

    Her Bad Mother July 9, 2007 at 8:49 am

    We have another toilet, thankfully. Otherwise we’d be in a hotel. Where we may still end up, if that bathroom doesn’t get finished soon.

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