Monday, February 23, 2009


once in a while i get the itch to do something outside of my usual role. for fun. for experience. to stretch myself a little bit. it's normally a smallish task. a couple years ago, i changed the tire on my truck (something i did again just this past weekend). i installed the light fixture in abi's bathroom a few months ago, and installed one in the basement this weekend.

i find a great benefit in doing things like this. first, it increases my feelings of self sufficiency. second, it gives me experience in a real life thing that some people do all the time, and other people never ever do for themselves, and once i accomplish the task, it becomes significantly easier to accomplish again.

today i did something i never thought i'd do.
today i installed a toilet.

i had a couple of hiccups in the process... a slipped T bolt when tightening it to the bowl stand; a missing gasket that instigated a quick trip to home depot to attach the tank unit to the bowl; a massive blockage that we realized was just braeden.

all in all, however, it seemed to go without issue. i do believe it was not only my first toilet installation, but perhaps it was my first time plumbing, ever!

i learned a few informational morsels that i would like to share.
  • first, carrying a toilet to a basement for installation is actually quite manageable, as long as you remember to open the box, and take the toilet downstairs in pieces. that stuff doesn't need to stay all together if you want to avoid hernia.
  • second, it's important to have the right tool for the job, and sometimes the right tool is hidden in the box with the wrong tool.
  • third, people who compile instructions for installing a toilet are stupid. limiting instructions to a sketch drawing accompanied by 5 tiny half sentences in 5 alternate complex languages seems to make peoples' brains fall out. they don't list everything that came in your box. they don't tell you where to put the "extra" parts, and sometimes they'll just throw you a picture of a circular item to put onto your bolt, but they won't tell you if it's a washer or a gasket. i've determined maybe you need to be an idiot in order to even translate the instructions. it's no wonder guys never ask for directions.
it was a wonderful project that took me only a couple of hours to complete, and ended with a great sense of satisfaction. and so far- no leaks (knock on wood, quick)!

i must admit though, it's the first time i have worked diligently on a project, focused on it, became attached to it, found pride in it, enjoyed it, then peed on it.

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