Mr. Fix It

'Your husband started without me, didn't he?'It’s a phrase I dread hearing. When it happens I get all shaky and I feel like I can’t breath. Who would have thought eight words could throw me into such a panic but when one of my children informs me that, “Dad’s watching a home improvement video on YouTube,” I think my heart stops.

The repercussions of this simple act are so far reaching and potentially life threatening that I’ve conducted drills with my children so they know exactly what to do when seeing their father receive repair tips via the internet.

Last Saturday, my son delivered the unsettling news that my husband was glued to his computer screen watching a dishwasher “fix it” video. I was running errands and away from home when I got the call. I quickly responded by shouting into my cell, “C’mon this is what we’ve trained for. You know what to do. It’s go time. Remember the three D’s – distract, delay, divert.”

“Okay, okay, I distract him by asking about the University of Texas Rose Bowl game, right?”

“Yes, it’s the 2006 Rose Bowl. Just say Rose Bowl and Vince Young and then let him start yammering. If it sounds like he’s wrapping up the play-by-play ask him about total yardage.”

“Got it. Rose Bowl, Vince Young, yardage. When are you going to be home? I don’t know how long I can do this.”

“Stall him for 15 minutes max. I’m heading your way right now and for the love of God do not let him go to Home Depot. Hide his keys if you have too.”

My husband is talented at a great many things home repairs just isn’t one of them. I’m all good with that but for some reason he feels compelled to attempt to fix things before calling in what usually requires a team of professionals. Yes, I know it’s a guy thing. I’m pretty sure at those Low T (Testosterone) centers, you hear advertised all the time on the radio, one of the first tests they give a man is something to repair. If they’re not interested, in say snaking a clogged drain, then it’s proof their testosterone is about a quart low.

I have nothing against my husband trying to do repairs around the house what I’m concerned with is the added cost of paying someone to fix his repairs and of course, even though he’s heavily insured, I don’t want to see him meet his demise from electrocution or falling off a roof. In fact, the roof or any kind of gutter work has become off limits. The day I say, “Oh sure, go ahead and climb up on that rickety ladder and clean out the gutters” is the day he’ll know I no longer love him and have big plans for that life insurance payout.

When I got home my son had totally let me down. I walked into my kitchen and found both of them watching the YouTube video. My husband had already tried his favorite home repair go to – Drano (followed closely by duct tape and Gorilla Glue) and was now moving on to some sort of dismantling of the dishwasher’s innards. Using a voice I save for dealing with the mentally fragile I gently suggest that they both back away from the dishwasher and hand over the screwdriver.

All that got me was a whole lot of male blustering about how they’ve “got this.” I had no choice but to leave the kitchen and hope for the best. And by that I mean going upstairs to my computer and looking at new dishwashers online. I was thinking the stainless steel Kitchen Aid with the “ProWash Whisper Cycle” would be really nice.

As luck would have it just as I’m getting excited about my new dishwasher I’m summoned back to the kitchen to behold their work. Apparently, the father son duo had “fixed” the dishwasher. They were both beaming. I birthed two children and I don’t think I was that proud of creating life. I had to listen to them explain the intricate problem solving and repair work that they had undertaken and then was given what amounted to a theatrical production of the dishwasher’s rinse cycle operating at maximum “clog free” capacity. Seriously, it would have made decent dinner theatre.

I cooed the appropriate comments and lavished praise on their handyman abilities. Then I went back upstairs and bookmarked the Kitchen Aid dishwasher. I’d probably be ordering it sooner than later.

**For more Snarky check out my book  Snarky in the Suburbs Back to School. 

Here’s a little ditty about it: The Spring Creek Elementary School PTA board (a coven of Mean Moms dressed in Uggs, yoga pants, and dermal filler) is up to no good. Wynn Butler (middle-aged, uncool, and not bringing sexy back) is determined to find out what’s going on. With help from her two kids, a Roomba vacuum turned mobile surveillance drone, and a few good friends, Wynn launches a covert investigation that leads to the “mother of all revenge capers” at the school’s annual Fall Festival. If you’ve ever fantasized about smoke bombing the idiot parent who has yet to master the fine art of the school drop-off lane, or standing up and shouting, “Liar, liar, Botox on fire” during a PTA meeting, then this delicious tale of payback is for you.

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10 thoughts on “Mr. Fix It

  1. Maura says:

    I think we have the same husband. One “simple” plumbing repair cost us $1,000 after my husband put Drano in the dishwasher.

  2. Trish says:

    Someone please tell me why men do this! Why are they afraid of calling for help. Is it like asking for directions or something?

  3. Klyta says:

    Girl…at least your husband watches a youtube video first.
    Mine insists he can just “figure it out”.
    Yesterday he had the carpet shampooer torn apart:

    Me: “What’s wrong”?
    Him: “It stopped spraying water”.
    Me: “Does it have water in it”?
    Him: “It has water in it – it’s a dual thing with clean/dirty tanks”

    1/2 an hour later…

    Me: “Seriously…does it have clean water in it”?
    Him: (grudgingly checks the tank to humor me) “Uh…it does not”…

  4. Pearl ;) says:

    My husband learned VERY early on in our marriage that he has severe limitations in the “fix-it” world. Thank God for small blessings. I think when the chunk of ceiling fell on him, he saw the light. For small fix-its, I feel pretty confident. “My fatha was a mechanic, his fatha was a mechanic, my 4 uncles were mechanics, my 2 brothas are mechanics”…..I am just thankful his book smarts have allowed us the luxury of hiring it done. And yes, I consider it a luxury to NOT have a dripping ceiling or falling sheet rock.

  5. Pam says:

    Thankfully my husband can fix most things….since we tend to buy homes formerly owned by people who should NOT have tried to fix things.

  6. Angela says:

    Mine knows when to call in the “big guns”, after about a week of procrastinating about I finally convince him…hey it would a whole less work if we just called someone..

  7. Angela says:

    Among the many things in my life that I am grateful for is that my husband a professional and extremely gifted musician, and can usually be talked down from home repairs. Plus, we rent. I don’t know what it would take to convince me to buy a home…..probably an awful lot of some illegal substance.

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