Lessons Learned from a Leaky Faucet
The faucet to the kitchen sink of the old house we had recently purchased was leaking. We were relatively new homeowners at the time, so we were still blissfully naive of the implications of the little drip, drip, drip sound the leak was making. No problem, we thought. It’s just a little leaky faucet. Nothing a quick trip to the hardware store couldn’t fix, right?
If you are a longtime homeowner, and especially if you have an older house, you know where this story is going because you have undoubtedly been there yourself, probably multiple times. Suffice it to say, when all was said and done, we had replaced the kitchen sink, bought new cabinets and countertops and were well on our way to a complete kitchen renovation which we had neither planned for nor could afford. You see, the sink was the old farmhouse style, with washboards on both sides and its own backsplash from which the faucet extended horizontally outward. Unfortunately, we were told at the hardware store — and by several plumbers we queried thereafter — that faucets for those kinds of sinks were no longer made. That’s when the implications started dawning on us. If we couldn’t get a replacement faucet, then we’d have to get a new sink. And if we were going to get a new sink, we’d also have to get a new cabinet and countertop for the sink to fit into. And, of course, the new cabinet would make the older ones look even worse by comparison, so we’d have to get all new cabinets and countertops. And why not put in a tile floor while we were at it, right? It turned out to be one very expensive leaky faucet!
That project — and several others like it — came to mind when editing Michele Weldon’s column, “The Unwritten Law of Home Repair,” on page 80. What is that unwritten law? That when it comes to home repair, one project inevitably leads to another, and another, and another, ad infinitum. Disconcerting to say the least but as Michele points out, also a bit humorous if viewed in the big picture perspective.
This issue also contains a great article on the many classic car shows that go on each summer throughout the western suburbs (see Car Crazed on page 38). The shows draw thousands of people, from casual onlookers to true auto aficionados. Though not a big car guy myself, I understand the attraction. Some of those classic old cars had style that puts the current generation of non-descript, look-alike autos to shame.
Finally, be sure to check out our Q&A with Grammy Award-winning singer and songwriter John Prine on page 12. The onetime Maywood mailman has made quite a career in the music industry, yet remains as down-to-earth and straight forward as the lyrics to his songs.
Since June marks the official arrival of Chicago’s all-too-brief summer, get out and enjoy the great weather while you can. And as always, thanks for being a reader!Edit Module