Everything is broken, Part 2, or, chim chimminy, chim chim chiroo…….

Good luck will rub off when I shake hands with you…..

Yesterday I played chimney sweep with haphazard success. Ann is paying for a professional but I figured with my much shorter, straight pipe, I could easily do it myself. Delete easily, and accuracy is achieved.

First, I swept the roof the day before. Strangely enough, when leaves are on the ground you rake, when they are on the roof, you sweep. Later in the winter, if we are lucky enough to have substantial snow, I will rake the roof with a roof rake (more like a scraper).

Then I removed the cap and discovered that the smallest brush Ann has is way too big. Called the hardware store and learned that a polyester bristle brush is required for my metal pipe anyway. The next two things I learned were that stovepipe is categorized by it’s inside diameter (even though carpenters would go by the outside diameter) AND, it’s a very good idea to measure the inside diameter before driving to Belfast. Twice. The first time I was handed the wrong box ( metal bristles).

I decided that the pipe wasn’t really bad but I did have the pipe pushed out of my stove, so I figured I would vacuum behind the damper. Alas, I had incorrectly installed the hepa filter in the shop vac and as I was sucking out dried chunks of creosote the vac was spewing clouds of soot behind me. I quickly turned on the ceiling fan and put another in a window to suck out anything not on a surface and exited to avoid potential black lung disease.

I vacuumed a bit (with the house vac) but realized that washing was required. Luckily I’d not installed my newly cleaned carpet yet. Now I have a very clean floor.


Meanwhile, I figured that my first dryer repair was faulty due to my poor crimping skills. I fixed the wire that had come loose, shorting out the element, and replaced the blown thermal fuse. I got two rounds of dryer action before failure. I guess I should have clued in that the element seemed too hot and glowy. I must say, the life of a handywoman is fraught with unexpectedness and challenge.

There is good news. Having my computer in to be repaired allowed the discovery that my hard drive was failing, discovered before everything was lost. I have multiple backups, so no real worries. That said, I’m writing this on my iPod so pictures are limited to what is on the device.


So, fixing things that are broken. I think I’m glad I didn’t tackle the computer, although I may try, next time…… And, not broken and worth mentioning, the tide has turned, and Maine voted slightly more to the liberal (inclusive, collaborative, accepting) and approved marriage for all.

Or blow me a kiss and that’s good luck too.


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