Two days ago, a nice man came and cut down the rest of the tree from the shed. In good time too! I made 25 trips toting 150lb logs in the wheelbarrow to the road. My gluteus maximum lifted half a foot and my biceps are now huge. The following day it snowed. So the timing worked out.
Today, I attended to those things I ignored for nearly 3 weeks in the aftermath of Hurricane Sandy, namely putting things away from summer, adding foam insulation to my water pipes and fixing the flapper in the toilet tank.
The toilet randomly flushed. I jokingly referred to it as a poltergeist. A twitter friend called it a "literary critic." All I know is that 1 flush meant yes and 2 meant no.
Having no idea how to do this arduous task, I reached out to a friend who sent a youtube instructional guide which I avidly watched. Then, armed with a brand new flapper, I entered the bathroom and approached the throne. With trepidation, I lifted the toilet tank cover and nearly gagged. It was black from sediment and the toilet's only 2 years old! I removed the old flapper made from pliable plastic. Immersed in icy cold water, I washed out the sediment. Then, I inserted the new one with a hard plastic. And heard a crunch.
It broke in pieces.
Disgusted, I removed the new one and washed the old flapper and reinserted it. It wasn't broken; the sediment built up and unseated it. Better than the new one!
Considering I worked in icy water, I had a chill. And layered myself. Then, to unwind, I played a DVD borrowed from the library about Iris Murdoch, the novelist and her tragic descent into Alzheimers. Halfway through the movie, I thought I heard a sound usually associated with deer trampling through my lawn. I placed the movie on pause and peered through the slats on the back of the door.
A pair of eyes peered back at me. Opening the door, I then saw my dedicated FedEx driver.
"I saw your lights on and decided to pay you a visit."
The truth of the matter was that my lights were always on since I got the electricity back. But no one could see them for the fallen tree on the shed not to mention the mountain of tree limbs and logs blocked all sight of my house from anyone at the road. Now that the tree is gone, a mere two days, I'm visible.
He saw the movie on pause. "What're you watching?"
"A docudrama about an old novelist becoming demented." It was something I can relate to.
Wisely, he ignored my remark. "I had a little free time and wanted to fool around."
I gave him a look. "I wish you'd give me advance notice. I'm really not in the mood. I spent around 3 hours in icy water replacing the flapper in the toilet tank. I'm frozen solid."
That's when he looked at me. I had on two sweaters and a sweater jacket, black leggings and EMU boots. My Edenpure heater was 2' from the sofa and the living room gas propane heater blasted at full output.
"It's hot as blazes in here!" he said. "It must be around 75!"
I pointed to a thermometer. "No, it says 60."
He picked it up and peered. "That's a piece of shit."
I went to the heater thermometer to prove my point and saw 75. Sheepishly, I said, "Oh, I better turn it down."
He sat down on the sofa and we kibbitzed a bit.
"I'm glad you still have a job. I blogged about a neighbor I had and one believed it was about her. She threatened to sue me for libel and defamation. And then read the posts about you and was indignant that you took time off from delivering packages to have meaningless sex with me. I really thought she was going to call your office to get you fired. But, I figured, if that happened, you'd contact me."
He shook his head. "No one called and complained." He added, "Besides, those posts aren't really..." He struggled for a word until I interjected, "Salacious."
"Salacious," he repeated.
That disclosure gave me pause. All along, he told me he rarely reads and expressed no interest in anything I wrote. At that moment, he must've realized the slip for he shifted gears and pulled out the monster. "I shaved it just for you."
"What a gift! Although my preference is usually flowers."
He looked at me beseechingly. "It took a lot of work to shave it."
"Please. I did a lot of work for 3 hours cleaning out a toilet tank. I'm really not in the mood."
We then made out a bit. I said to him, "You're rubbing the wrong part of the anatomy." He laughed. "But I'm still not in the mood."
So we kibbitzed some more, this time about politics of all things. He almost levitated when he heard I was an "R."
"YOU?" he shook his head in amazement. "You?" That caught him off-guard. I kinda enjoy telling people I'm an "R" - the shock value never gets old.
"You know, you really should text me in advance," I said as I escorted him out of the house.
"I never know how my schedule goes," he said. "And I no longer have your phone number."
While leaving my house, he added, "You should really watch a comedy."
In response, I said, "You should really text me in advance."
"No, I prefer it this way," he smiled.
"Like in The Pink Panther when Inspector Clousseau never knows when his houseboy, Kato, will attack him?" I said.
He laughed and walked away.
And that's when I had an epiphany. I'm sure he enjoys the sex, but still I'm thirty years older than him. I bet it must be some experience to read about our encounter later on in the blog.
So here's to you, FedEx guy. I hope you enjoyed this post!
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