Tag Archives: power outage

Welcome to A Post-Apocalyptic Hellscape Nightmare, A Comedy

14 Apr

We are living through a very strange and terrible time. Shit is awful. And even while coronavirus is ravaging us, other annoying things are happening. For example, I am still getting my very heavy period which feels like a huge injustice. Just an FYI, this post is going to be about stupid shit like that. It’s for laughs. A vacation from the insanity. A small reminder that even though everything is especially terrible now, life is still as annoying and stupid as ever! Like, yesterday one of my cats threw up her entire breakfast all over my carpet and it was a nightmare trying to clean it up. I almost vomited. Lesson learned: there is value in consistency.

 

Okay, so, I lost my job on Monday, March 16th, same day as all the other restaurant folks here in the city. Two days later, on Wednesday, March 18th it rained really hard. Like really hard. Side note. If you’ve spoken to me much in the past 3 years or so you would know that we have a bit of a leaking problem here at the old homestead. And by “little” I actually mean that one night the ceiling opened and it rained all over our bed and we had to be moved into a vacant apartment for about 6 weeks while our entire bedroom was ripped apart and rebuilt. Well. The problem was never entirely solved. Random mostly minor leaking has just become a way of life for us. Fast forward to about 2 months ago, my neighbors toilets stopped working and all their plumbing exists in our basement so we had a bunch of plumbers as roommates for a few days while they traipsed around the apartment with tools and muddy boots and jokes. I kind of loved them if I’m being completely honest. I STOPPED loving them when they ran a sewage pipe along the beam in our bedroom ceiling, resulting in us being able to hear every time our neighbors flush their (now working) toilets. Eric and I lie in bed and whenever we hear the poop water running above our heads we both shake our fists at the ceiling and say “WHYYYYYY?!” Literally every time. It’s basically tradition at this point.

 

Okay. So. That’s where we were at until Wednesday, March 18th. The day when it rained really hard.

 

There I was, in the bed, sleeping. It was like 3am. I had my sound machine going to try and drown out the noise of my cats meowing for food at an ungodly hour. I know they think they are starving but I can assure you, they are not. I have had these cats for 9 years and never once in all that time have they not been fed. But I digress. Sound machine. That particular night I happened to be listening to the soothing sounds of the rainforest. You know, some light thunder, big, melodious rain drops landing on over-sized leaves, birds chirping. And then, in my sleep, I heard a sound. Click. Click. Click. I thought Goose, my dog, was standing by the side of the bed, needing to be taken out, whacking her tail against the wall. Click. Click. Click. I looked over. No Goose.  And then I realized. It was the <click, click, click> of dripping water. Shit. I woke up Eric. We assembled an arsenal of pots, buckets and beach coolers to collect the water dripping, in some cases even spewing, out of the ever-growing number of breaches in our ceiling. At one point I stood on the bed, pot held high above my head, while Eric ran for more reinforcements. In that moment another hole appeared, right above me. Brackish water started falling on my hair and running down my face. Ugh. We set out pots as best we could, blew up the air mattress and slept in the living room. By the middle of the following day, we had collected at least two gallons of gross ceiling water.

 

**Important detail: this water does not contain poop. I did not have poop water in my hair or on my face. It was a separate leak from the pipe in the ceiling.**

 

The next morning, the ceiling of our bedroom was still DRIP DRIP DRIPPING. Eric, being the problem solver that he is, came up with a plan to affix some intense plastic to the ceiling to create a sort of funnel situation, so if the ceiling were to leak we could at the very least direct it into a vessel. And boy howdy did it leak! The next day, a day in which it was not raining, we collected yet another gallon of gross ceiling water in the cooler that we had precariously balanced on top of a wooden Ikea room divider. What. The. F. Where could this water be coming from? Is it trapped somewhere? Did someone forget to turn a hose off? And then it hit me like a bucket full of dirty ceiling drippings: our neighbors washing machine. Could it be? It could. And it was. Somehow in all their pipe fixin’, tool carryin’ and joke makin’ the plumbers had somehow fucked something up so royally that our neighbors’ washing machine was draining through the beams, the light sockets and also just some random other spots in our bedroom ceiling. During a pandemic. Cool. The solution? Whelp, since having plumbers come through doesn’t quite match the social distancing requirement, our landlord is paying for our neighbors to do laundry pick-up service and we have some unsightly plastic duct taped to our bedroom ceiling. Good thing we’re not having guests over any time soon, am I right?

 

But it’s fine. Really. We are doing great. Until last night.

 

It was about 11 pm. We were sitting on the sofa, marveling over the fact that one of our cats was actually sitting ON TOP OF Goose. Goose, at that moment, was covered in a blanket and so it is entirely likely that Grete did not in fact know that she was perched atop a dog but instead thought she was relaxing on an exceptionally warm pile of…rhythmically breathing pillows…? It was like a dream come true. And then, all of a sudden, in the middle of an especially funny episode of Schitt’s Creek there was a loud

 

BANG!!!

 

And everything shut off. And then, just as quickly, turned back on again. (Or so we at first thought.) The cats retreated underneath various things, Goose looked around confused, Eric ran to the door to see what had happened and I sat there, shocked, useless and probably stammering something involving a ton of swear words. It turns out a transformer had exploded and almost the entire block was left in complete darkness. While I waited on hold with ConEd, fire trucks, police cars and ambulances came racing down the street. I assume someone reported an explosion which, there was. It was so loud I basically thought someone had dropped a dumpster from 1,000 feet up. People in PJs and half-full glasses of wine stepped onto their front stoops, bleary eyed and confused. Firefighters in full regalia walked from door to door, documenting who had power and who, like us, had some weird patchwork of electricity that made absolutely no logical sense. Folks in masks wandered the through the darkness. With everything going on, and everyone distrustful of the health of those around them, it felt like we had been attacked by something. Which, of course, we have been but the power outage was a completely separate incident. Once I knew the explosion was a mere inconvenience and not a danger, all I could think about was everyone’s fridges, now not working, stocked with slowly warming food. A literal nightmare at this current moment when going to the grocery store has become incredibly stressful. Our refrigerator was spared, unlike our oven, and so obviously Eric was busying himself doing electricity things with a drill and “grounding wires?” which was making me extremely nervous. I don’t know about you all but playing around with electrical wires after an actual electrical explosion seemed like an unnecessary risk given the circumstances but, what do I know.

 

Once Eric was done swearing at some screws in the wall, we headed to bed. We brushed our teeth by flashlight and wondered whether our hot water would be on by morning. I personally wished I hadn’t taken a vacation from showering for the day. And then, at about 1:30 am we heard a small <beep, beep, beep> and a slight rush of poop water above our heads. For once, we did not raise our fists in the air and yell. The electricity was back. One crisis averted.


If you are enjoying my writing, and since a lot of the cafes are currently closed, consider buying me a coffee on ko-fi! It only costs $3 (or a multiple of 3 if you’re feeling frisky!) and would make my house-bound, under-socialized heart sing. To those of you who caffeinated me, I send you so much gratitude. And I send gratitude to all of you who took the time to read this piece and helped me hold some of these thoughts.