Although I could legitimately argue that it's the sound of gunfire in the wee hours of the evening that reeks havoc on my heart as a homeowner in the hood. But unless it's followed by the sounds of screaming (which it never has Thank God!) or sirens and the loud thumping of the MPD on my front door (which it never has, Thanks again Big Guy!) - I don't get too worried about the sounds of random gunfire. I like to think that it's 1970s Cadillacs backfiring. It's a much more pleasant image of my little House in the Hood.
No, urban tribe, what truly makes my blood pressure rise to a level of uncertainty is the sound of water running where it shouldn't.
Don't get too excited, it's not a horrible post. The title above reads like I have water up to my ankles, and that isn't the case. Water on my ankles maybe, but that's an internal thing and can be addressed at another time. But truly, water dripping, running, gushing when you aren't where the water is dripping, running or gushing is a sound that strikes fear instantly into the very core of the heart of a homeowner. Your mind races as you move towards the direction of the resonance...your brain desperately tries to compare the fierceness of the rushing to all other water related memories of the past.
Could *that* be what burst pipes sound like? Okay, dammit, that's more than just the leaky pipes...okay, okay, deep breaths, it's the in the basement, so it's not the roof, Phew! But it could be the water main.
By the time you reach the steps to the basement and get your wits to legitimately assess the situation you hope that it's the washing machine. Please, oh please, oh please, be the washing machine.
Indeed, tonight's drama of water splashing where it shouldn't was brought to you by a very clogged and very lint riddled lint trap. Lint traps aren't one of those things I happen to replace on a schedule. Lint traps and I are on a "need to replace" basis...I only wish the trap had a better system of telling me it's time to replace it other than spraying gallons of water onto the basement floor.
One of the first times the lint trap became a fountain of unholy water delivery was when I allowed a mesh sock to dry into an adobe, lint maché tube sock covering what should have been a free flowing exit hose. I'm sure the "correct" term is discharge hose, but that sounds like my hose spent time in Sing Sing, and that's not the case.
One of the crowning moments in any adult homeowner's life is the day you realize you no longer have to exchange crisp 20.00 bills for two measly rolls of quarters that may or may not produce a suitable amount of both clean-washed and yet thoroughly dry laundry. My Little House in the Hood came with what I first thought was a "charming" and "quaint" washer and dryer set from the late 1950s.
I was smitten, in love, truly with the coin slotlessness of *my* washing machine and *my* dryer. If I want to dry my jeans until they are so shrunken and crisp that I have to sew two pairs together in order to wear them and be decent in public, well, I can. My love affair, however, was cut short when I first heard the sound of water splashing on concrete during a particular early load of laundry. While the gurgle and spray noises are charming in movies where sunburned children dash in and out of fire hydrants spraying thousands of gallons of water, the equivocable sound in one's own basement is terrifying.
I went downstairs and my gut knotted when I saw the uncomfortably large amount of water rapidly pooling on the basement floor. And it wasn't exactly delight filling my senses when I finally looked up and saw a tiny replica of the Bellagio Fountain Show coming out of my laundry sink. I think my exact thoughts were something along the lines of "What the Hell?" not, "Cool, that's perfectly timed to Luck Be a Lady". I threw my dirty laundry on top of the growing, wet mess on the floor, walked over to the sink and looked down at the lint sprinkler causing such a commotion.
Lint sprinklers are gross. They force uncanny amounts of water to spray violently upwards and cause messes of grand proportion on basement floors. They raise my heart rate to a level healthy spinning instructors can only dream of achieving.
Mind you - this isn't just a charming post with witty self depricating humor tucked neatly into run on sentences. No, this is actually an Anti-Bellagio Fountain Show in YOUR Laundry Sink tip. My solution when I need to do laundry and I don't have brand new shiny mesh sock to cover up the washer's exit hose -- I tuck my lint adobe maché covered hose end into a water pitcher laying on its side. For some reason, I have an absurd amount of water pitchers for a single woman, so I keep one downstairs, perched neatly on the edge of my laundry sink. The water freely sprays up and out of the rapidly clogging lint hose staying cleanly within the plastic confines of both laundry sink and water pitcher.
I used to think it was weird places like Kowalski's and Lund's and Cub Foods had Lint Traps available in a grocery store. Now I'm a purveyor of lint traps I walk the aisles and see the displays and occasionally think, "Score! Lint Traps, Buy One, Get One Free!"