the day the toilet died

tell me all about itIt’s been one of THOSE weeks. You know what I am talking about. Nothing goes right. You have one hot flash after another, well, maybe not you exactly, but some of you did. Everything you wanted to accomplish, you didn’t. Someone is upset. Someone else is pissed off at you. The cats love you one minute, hate you the next. They show it by completely trashing the box you were saving for the next shipment of Quirky Holiday Calendar Bags. Your telephone banking representative misunderstands your inquiry and disables your one and only banking card but you don’t know it until you make your next purchase and it is declined. You can’t sleep. You miss one day of cleaning the litter boxes and, when you remember, you need to call in a backhoe to help with excavation. You go to town but forget the shopping list. The dog died, well, no, not really but that would be really sad/bad if it did happen. And then you break the toilet.

Yes, you read that right. I. Broke. The. Toilet.  Before I begin this sad tale of woe, I would like to state that the toilet has been acting up for over a year now so what happened is not entirely my fault; I just happened to be the one who was using it when it died. That’s my story and I am sticking to it. Call it fate or call it bad luck. Either way, the toilet is screwed and now we need to buy a new one.

water is rising too fastWe have all been there. That moment when you flush the toilet but you know that something is wrong, very, very wrong. The water is rising rather than going down, down, down. So you wait and you pray to high heavens that that sweet release will come in the form of a swoosh taking everything away with it. Only it doesn’t. The water just stays there. Right at the rim. What to do? What to do?

I grabbed the plunger which was right beside the toilet. I hope you recognize this as proof positive that the toilet has indeed been acting up. Why else would someone keep a plunger right beside their toilet? It is definitely not there to spruce up the decor. You would never see Chip and Joanna Gaines from Fixer Upper using one as a decoration in one of their bathrooms. Nooooooo. But we do because we’re special.

d079d3ad8d63ead15a20bc6b5ef76bbdAgain, I send prayers up to the high heavens and gently submerge the plunger. I want this toilet unplugged before Sauerkraut comes home. I want to prove that I am woman, hear me roar and that I can indeed fix this toilet all by myself. Because nothing, nothing, is worse than having to ask your significant other to go in and plunge the toilet after you have plugged it. That is, unless you have plugged someone else’s toilet and then you have to tell them. That is bad. Very bad.

Sadly, my prayers go unanswered. I cannot fix said toilet. I have to wait until my sweet, dear, lovable, kind, and unsuspecting husband comes home from work. Tick tock. Tick tock.

Here’s how the conversation went down when Sauerkraut got home:

Me:  How much do you love me?

Sauerkraut: A lot. Why? What did you do?

Me (somewhat insulted): Why do you always assume that I did something?

Sauerkraut: Well, when you ask me as soon as I get home ‘how much do I love you?’ I know that you did something.

Me (indignant):  Ok. You know how we’ve been having trouble with the toilet.

Sauerkraut: Yes.

Me: Well, it’s totally plugged this time. It won’t flush. The plunger doesn’t clear it and the water is right up to the rim.

Sauerkraut: You know there’s a trick to flushing the toilet. You have to hold ….

Me (annoyed): Yes, I know all about holding the handle down until you hear the water swoosh. I did that. I’ve been doing that since you first told me about it. It didn’t work. The toilet is plugged.

Sauerkraut (looking rather smug): Don’t worry about it. I’ll fix it.

Me: Good luck.

Now I'm ready to plunge

After about ten minutes, Sauerkraut aka ‘Mario the Plumber’ exits the bathroom looking both annoyed and more determined that ever.

Sauerkraut:  I’ve gotta go get ‘the snake’.

Me (totally embarrassed now): Oh my god. Not ‘the snake’.

Holy crapolla, this is way past serious. Now we need ‘the snake’.

According to Wikipedia, “a plumber’s snake is a slender, flexible auger used to dislodge clogs in plumbing. The plumber’s snake is often reserved for difficult clogs that cannot be loosened with a plunger. It is also sometimes called a toilet jack or electric eel”.   

I don’t know about you but just the terms snake, auger, toilet jack and electric eel are enough to make me want to curl up in a deep dark hole and hide forever and ever. Amen.


I got thisSauerkraut returns with ‘the snake’ after digging it out of the back shed. He makes a rather big deal about it, showing it off to me like one of those models on The Price is Right. It’s as if he’s saying, ‘And over here, ladies and gentlemen, is the Super Duper Snake, The Toilet Jack, The Electric Eel, the best darned clog dislodger in the whole entire universe!!!” Sauerkraut is super jacked now. He’s heading into the bathroom all stoked up like Rocky Balboa climbing those stairs in front of that building which I can’t for the life of me think of what its name is. But I’m sure you get my drift.

I wait in the living room, patiently, nervously. To me, it’s taking too long. I don’t know a lot about plumbing per se but I am fairly certain that the super duper snake, the toilet jack, the electric eel should have done its super duper dislodging by now. But it hasn’t and now I must find that deep dark hole in the middle of a forest in a far, far away land so that I can hide forever and ever and never be heard from again. Amen.

Out comes Sauerkraut. He’s looking totally defeated. Sweat is pouring down his face. I can tell he has worked that snake like he’s never worked a snake before.

Sauerkraut: It didn’t work. It’s official. The toilet’s broken. We need a new one.



Sauerkraut: You know I’ve never been defeated by a toilet before. The plunger always works.

Me:  deer-in-headlights

Sauerkraut: It’s okay. We’ll get a new one this weekend. It was a cheap toilet when I bought it and it never worked properly to begin with. You’ll just have to use the bathroom downstairs.



This is not good. The same day that I broke the toilet I also did something to my left knee. I did not twist it, fall on it or bang it. I merely sat down (not on the toilet but on the sofa; I know how your mind works) and the darn knee made a ‘pop’ sound. While I do not have much pain with it, my knee is making a horrible grinding noise upon bending and flexing. I can also feel it grinding when I place my hand on it. It’s totally grossing us out, this grinding knee sound of mine, because it sounds as if it is bone on bone grinding against one another. It is especially noisy going up and down the stairs and I now have to take the stairs one step at a time just so my knee won’t grind and just so I can use the toilet in the basement. It’s the equivalent of walking up hill in my father’s pyjamas in the blinding snow in my bare feet, well, you get my drift.

You would think that the insanity would have stopped there. But, nooooooooo, it did not. Yesterday, MC texted me asking me how things were going here in the Ottawa Valley. I foolishly told him what had happened. At first he misunderstood what I was texting; he thought I banged my knee on the toilet and somehow broke the toilet that way. I guess he thinks that my knee is made of steel. When he figured out what really happened, is when the madness truly began.

MC: Ahahahahahahahahahahahahaha! No Way!

Me: I kid you not. The toilet is done.

MC: That’s really impressive. This shit would only happen to you.

Me: Funny ha ha.

Then MC went quiet for awhile. I thought perhaps he was distracted by something else or that he was done texting. But, nooooooooooo.

My phone pinged once again announcing that a message had arrived from YC. This is what greeted me:

log in toilet

YC: I heard this was you.

Me: That little bastard.

YC: Well, from the sounds of it, it was by no means a little bastard.

Me: I meant your brother. I hope you two are having fun at my expense.

YC: So much, mom, you wouldn’t believe it.

Me: I’m glad that I have made your day. I bet you’re still laughing AND I bet you told HT (his girlfriend).

YC: Haha. At least you can be proud of how well you know your children.

Me: Dear God. She will never be able to look me in the eye.

YC: Or use the toilet. You know … because you broke it.

Me: WE’RE GETTING A NEW ONE!!!!!!!!!!!

And that was life in the Cabbage Patch this week. It probably makes your week look mighty good compared to mine unless you really have a bad job like a road kill picker upper or something gross like that. If that is your job, well, I am truly sorry for you. Hang in there; hopefully, something better will come along.

As you know, the entire premise behind this blog is based on a promise that I made to YC (I am to try or do something new at least once a week). I hope that, in addition to providing him and his brother with some new fodder for them to reminisce about at my, hopefully, Irish wake (remember that time mom broke the toilet?), they realize that plenty of new things went on here this week. I can honestly say that I have never broken a toilet before and I can honestly say that I have never heard a grinding noise coming from my knee. But the something new doesn’t just stop there.

This weekend Sauerkraut and I are going toilet shopping together. I can honestly say that this is something that I have never done before. It is impossible to adequately express the anticipation that I have over this; I can hardly contain my excitement. Nothing says romance quite like shopping for a new toilet. Maybe we’ll hold hands if we’re lucky.

Log: 1

Dignity: 0


PS: I left the links embedded in the Wikipedia definition about the plumber snake just in case you would like to learn more about snakes, augers, toilet jacks, electric eels. You may be one of those real book learner types who wants to know more about this fascinating subject. However, if you prefer to perform your own Google search about it, then be sure to include toilet + snake in the search; otherwise you will be shown all sorts of creepy crawly reptiles slithering past you. And, for that, you are very welcome.




  1. The only thing worse is if it happens in the bathroom at work and you have to tell the receptionist to call for help. This may or may not have happened to me once. And there was no plunger. Just horror. Great story, by the way–I love that your kids send you texts like that.

    1. Oooooh nooooo! I hope you or not you were wearing a wig so that you or not you could not be identified as the clogger. Glad pissy Canadian fish was ok; our pets are definitely members of our families. You’ve given me an idea for a future post as I have some real corkers of texts from my kids.

  2. Crying at the log photo! I mean, sympathies and all, but this is funny. You know it’s funny ’cause you wrote it after you lived it. Again, my sympathies and my thanks for a great story! PS–#hotflashes?! I might have to steal it.

    1. The log photo was definitely the highlight of this post! My youngest son deserves full credit for that beauty. Our family always makes fun of our most embarassing and awkward situations; it’s how we roll, otherwise, we’d be crying most of the time 😉 Re: #hotflashes steal — go for it! We hotflashers have to stick together. Thanks for your comments 🙂

  3. Hahahahahahahahahaha! At least it was just a log clog and you didn’t break the flippin’ seat by sitting on it! A woman I used to work with used to break every seat she sat on.. Think “What’s Eating Gilbert Grape..” Yeah, she was a lit’l curvy..

    1. Good idea about a list of posts — just created one so that you can procrastinate all day. Hey, if I’m procrastinating today, you may as well be. I don’t have that many posts yet as I am really just getting going with this blog thingie. I’m heading over to your blog shortly; I need a chuckle or two because it is freakin’ snowing like crazy here today. Oh, the insanity of it all!

    1. Yes they certainly are and thank you! The log image seems to be the most popular. I may do a post on just their text messages some day – we have some interesting conversations. Your kids reminded me of mine when I was reading your blog. I love their code names. Thanks for stopping by and I’m looking forward to reading more of your stories.

    1. Yep me too! I laughed my arse off. I never knew such a thing existed but now it makes perfect sense. Everyone’s been there. Though not everyone’s was so badass as to actually break a toilet! Kudos! 😉
      I am also loving the relationship you have with your boys, and hope mine will see fit to send me such awesome photos one day. They already like to do things like fart on me and run away laughing, so I wouldn’t be at all surprised!

      1. I’m still trying to live this down. There is a special relationship between a mother and a son and, if you keep the lines of communication open, you, too, can look forward to text messages like I receive. I’ve been stockpiling some of our best text messages and hope to post about them sooner rather than later. Thanks for taking the time to comment; they are the best part about blogging. You never know what kind of like minded individuals you are going to meet!

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