March 6th 2011 3:40pm - Tahoe and a Wire

My friends and I were supposed to go to Tahoe for the weekend. They were going to do productive, athletic things, like snowboarding and skiing. I struggle to walk in normal life. I cannot strap my feet onto a board and throw myself down a hill without colliding with other objects or people. The last time I attempted snowboarding I was terrified of getting off the chair lift. I went around three times before I launched myself off the chair with overwhelming dread. I wobbled, fell over, and flew board-first into a family with three young children. I smashed into the five-year-old and smacked one of the other kids' ski poles. I lay on my back in the snow listening to the sobs of three people: the five-year-old, the seven-year-old, and myself.
This time I was ecstatic about going to Tahoe to play in the snow. I returned home from work with a handwritten list of items to pack. My desire to make a snowman paralleled my desire to one day be the mother of a small black child. I walked in to the house with a new pair of snow gloves. The microwave had been ripped out of the wall. It was sitting on the kitchen floor directly in front of my bedroom door. The oven was in the middle of the kitchen. A ladder blocked the hallway and a layer of white dust-like remnants of the wall settled over everything.
"Ummm, what happened?" I asked.

My landlord was my friend Pakistan.

"The last roommates I had somehow caught the microwave on fire, it hasn't worked in about six months, and now I'm replacing it." His voice came from the roof rafters.
I said, "alright," and shimmied around the ladder to go to the bathroom. The light switch didn't work.
"The light's out," I shouted.

"Ya, I just cut a wire."

"You cut a wire?"

"Ya. None of the outlets work. There's not really electricity in half of the house."
"Not really electricity in half the house?"
I walked over and looked at the place the microwave should be. There were two holes in the wall large enough to put Einstein's brain through. Wires hung out at schizophrenic angles.
"So you cut the wrong wire, we don't have electricity in half the house, and now you're looking at roof beams for answers?"
"You just looked at the wires, picked a color, and cut it?"
"I kind of looked it up first," he replied.
Pakistan is not an electrician. He canceled our Tahoe trip to stay home for the weekend to fix the kitchen.
As of now, it has been almost four months. The kitchen still doesn't have a microwave.

1 comment:

Pakistan said...

The new roomie picked up a microwave a few weeks ago. Score!