Ottomatic for the evening

Two things for today …

Okay, maybe three.

One: I’m not Mir, this is Otto writing.

Two: Mir IS the bargain queen, but there are consequences. As you know, she’s been renovating this and repairing that around the house. This morning, we hopped into my old truck and headed to the local Everything You Ever Need For Your Home store to pick up more stuff.

On the list:

  • Five feet of counter top
  • Bathroom sink and faucet
  • Metal dryer venting
  • Hangers for metal dryer venting
  • Screws to attach hangers for metal dryer venting

Not officially on the list but tucked into the back of our minds was a new kitchen faucet. The old one works – turn the handle, out pours water. But to shut it off, you had to move it just to the right of center and up a little. After years of doing it, everyone in this household has it down pat.

As we walked in to the store and heard the birds chirping, there it was – the discount stuff. Tons of it – chipped sinks, half of a toilet, opened box everything. And amidst the piles of debris, The Pretty One finds it. A beautiful Italian brushed aluminum all-in-one kitchen faucet and sprayer.

For $34.

Based on others we saw in the new section moments later, I’m guessing this was a $200 faucet. Open box, marked down 83%. She grabbed it and off we went.

At home, as the contractors went back to work on … well, everything, we loaded up the old truck with cardboard and fence posts to haul to the dump. (Where, it should be noted, the town charges – AHEM – $0.10 a pound. Four stiles and three lightly-cemented posts cost $26 to dispose of. I am in the wrong business.)

At home again, the kids returned from school and I started pulling the old faucet out. After much twisting and banging of knuckles, I discovered the sink would come out with the old, rusty faucet attached. It probably took seven minutes to dismantle the old faucet with the sink on the kitchen floor. (Five of which may have been spent talking Mir down off a cliff as she found her sink in the middle of the tiled floor.)

The new faucet went in rather easily, excepting a return trip to the local Everything You Ever Need For Your Home store for the things that broke as they were being taken out.

Drop the sink in, redo the connections, tighten one to alleviate a little leak and there it was – a nice new faucet with a pull out sprayer and a usable soap dispenser.

And then we noticed – the handle was crooked.

So, apart it all came. And the end conclusion – the reason it was a $34 faucet was because it had been cast wrong and there was no way to straighten it out.

Some days, you get what you pay for, I suppose.

Regardless, the sink no longer needs a nudge to the right to stop dripping. It looks pretty cool, too. Though Mir keeps walking by the cliff …

Three (Remember, there are three things to talk about): The Pretty One has been picking on my habit of signing off on comments with, “Otto out.” She informed me this evening that some celebrity does this on television and insinuated that I need to stop trying to be trendy.

I quickly corrected her – amongst my many very geeky traits is the fact that, at 29, I got my FCC amateur radio license. And that’s one of the ways we sign off.

(For the record, while I like having it and enjoy talking with other hams (that’s what we’re called, really), I only use it for working automobile races.) (Really.)

So, with that …

-Otto out


  1. Cele

    Maybe we should start a movement.
    Cele out

  2. Mom

    Clearly,. since you’re both still alive, I think you should get married. :) To each other.

  3. Meritt

    But… ‘how’ crooked? Crooked like, you can live with it and no one will notice unless you tell them?

    Because really… WHO LOOKS AT FAUCET HANDLES when they visit someones house?

    No one.

    You got a good deal.

  4. Jenifer

    That’s too funny. We must shop at the same store. We just got the same “looks like a $200 faucet” for like 39 bucks. We installed it and so far it looks OK…….however we haven’t actually hooked up the water to it yet, maybe then we will see why it was 39 bucks!!!!!!

  5. JP

    Even at $200 you got a ‘bargain’! Some of the fancy,schmancy European faucets run $1500.00 and up!!!

    Otto, trust me, you don’t want to work at the dump and you DO NOT want to be a plumber, garbage and shit is still garbage and shit!

    Have a fun renovation!


  6. Jenn

    My husband has his HAM radio license and is currently taking classes to upgrade it. We get something in the mail from the FCC at least twice a week, I can’t wait to see the look on the neighbor’s faces if they ever have to get our mail!

  7. Karen Rani

    Just so ya know, Mister Mir, there is a Lonelygirl15 spin-off series on YouTube, called the Nicky Bower Report, where a very cute “investigative reporter” signs off her video blogs with “Nicky Bower…OUT!”

    So because I’m one of the geeks who watches not only the trash of Lonelygirl15, but also the spin-off videos of said project, I have to say that your “Otto Out” is very endearing. And so are you. Mir is a lucky woman.

    (But again I will say: You breaka her heart, I breaka you face.)

    Have a great Christmas, you two silly kids!

  8. chris

    Is Mir still on the cliff? Is that why she is writing?

    Chris out

  9. Nancy

    Crooked-schmooked. It works, doesn’t it?

    Nancy out

  10. Aimee

    Note to Mir: Back. Away. From. The. Cliff. If anybody gets to you this weekend, I suggest yelling, “Don’t make me nuts! It’s Christmas!”

  11. Christina

    Hope Mir is walking away from the cliff to relax and enjoy the holidays. Christina out.

  12. Jenn2

    I assume that Mir is not posting because she is busily looking for the chocolate chip gingerbread recipe she dangled in front of her readers? Because it’s not like it’s Christmas and she has four million and five better things to do.

    And Otto, it could be far worse. You could refer to yourself in the third person. Way geekier than “Otto out.”

    Happy Holidays, y’all.

  13. shannon

    As long as it works and the people who buy the house don’t ask for it to be fixed (probably thinking to themselves, “That’s an easy fix, we’ll do that ourselves and be real, true homeowners”) then you’ll be fine!

    Shan out.

  14. The Other Leanne

    I find that when I’m doing a home improvement project, especially one that has to do with plumbing, it’s never one trip to the store but four. And the most difficult thing about plumbing is the tight spaces you have to work in (why am I lying upside down in this little cabinet under the sink?), so you were wise to put the sink on the floor. I had an almost identical experience with my kitchen faucet install, and now it’s a few years later and I’m thinking of re-doing it (because it was so much fun the first time). Ack.
    Leanne out, way, way out.

  15. Sophie

    That was a funny post, although I’m sure it was not funny to live through it. However, it provides great advice for the rest of us: do not buy anything from the bargain pile at the Everything You Ever Need For Your Home store.

    You guys have a Merry Christmas and all the rest.

    Sophie out (I couldn’t resist.)

  16. laura

    Yeah, this calls for a picture of the crooked faucet. :)

  17. Katherine

    So, don’t keep us hanging – did you keep the crooked faucet? Is it good enough? It’s Ryan Seacrest – American Idol host – that says “Seacrest out.” I’m sure you’d rather not be compared to him so we’ll say YOU started the signoff and HE copied it.

  18. Judy

    Since Bob and I are currently going through our own remodeling “fun” I just want to say that I think you and Mir are doing wonderfully. Ya know, maybe that should be required for couples before marriage… you have to remodel at least one room together.

    We’re looking to get Bob’s ham radio license renewed… we already have someone to help him string the antenna. Such fun.

  19. Red

    Red out though now I feel like a spot. lol

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