Friday, 14 June 2013

The Unfortunate Tomato and the Fortuitous Leak

I hope you'll forgive me for my lack of food waste photo.  The only casualty this week was a quarter of a little tomato that I had been saving for a nachos meal and which was unceremoniously dumped without even a photo for posterity.  I knew I was gambling with the poor vegetable's (or is it a fruit?) longevity when I decided to save it for a meal later in the week.  I lost the bet and the poor thing is now happily decomposing in my green bin.

Poor thing was leaking right by the handle.  
Since it would be downright rude of me to leave you completely photo-less (for an entire week no less!) may I introduce you to the water shut-off valve for my house's exterior water supply.  It has faithfully served my house for the last 23 years with seemingly no attention, let alone recognition.  As such it gave up the ghost this spring when I tried to turn it on and sprung a leak.  At this point I became very grateful for two things.  First the world wide web which gave me a good idea what was wrong with my shut-off valve.  (Seriously pop "leaky shut-off valve" into a search engine and you'll get about 110,000 hits.)  The second is the fact that I have an absolutely wonderful and handy Grandfather who was willing to stop by my house one afternoon and help me out.  As a result I now know how to fix a leaky shut-off valve for less than it would cost for a plumber to pull into my driveway.

In the true spirit of that old parable "give a man a fish and he eats for a day, teach a man to fish and he eats forever" the true value of having handy relatives is not that they will stop by your house to fix your problems, but that they will teach you to fix the problems yourself.  In a society where we chose to specialize in what we learn we frequently don't take advantage of the knowledge that the previous generation can pass along to us.  However, if you want to grow you independence and keep some money in you pocket I strongly suggest that you start learning.

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