The Kiss of Death

Have you ever driven down the freeway and thought to yourself: Wow, there’s hardly any traffic today. How lucky am I? And then you crest the hill only to witness a mass of cars seemingly attached like miles-long sausages. Or, if you brag to friends about rarely getting sick or injured, you’ve pretty much just guaranteed the next day you’ll get the flu and fall down the stairs.

Why do I bring this up? Because a couple weeks ago I had the audacity to actually say to someone, “I’ve been so fortunate these 39 years in my home because very little has gone wrong that needed fixing.” And that was, in 4 little words,

Now don’t get me wrong; a fire didn’t demolish my residence. The roof didn’t blow off during the huge storm we endured a few weeks ago. No trees fell on my car; nothing that bad. But apparently simply commenting about one’s good fortune just about guarantees it will soon change. I was never a true believer of that myth, until now. And here’s why…

During the storm, which was one of the wettest Marin County has experienced in 161 years, I was sitting in my cozy chair in the family room. My ottoman was full of cats so I barely found space for my feet when I felt something cold drop on my head. I looked up and splash, a raindrop landed on my cheek. My skylight was leaking. Now the ball was rolling.

After days of unrelenting rain, the roof over my garage leaked, forming a puddle next to the spare refrigerator. I thought the freezer was leaking, but no such luck. As I looked skyward, I spotted rainwater running down the wall, no doubt already forming black mold. Days later, the mold covered that entire section of wall.

But wait, there’s more!

Since they say bad things come in threes, I waited with baited breath (although I had to look up what that actually meant). Anyway, I waited with it. And like clockwork, door number 3 opened and out popped my hardwood floor, which leads from the dining room to the tiled kitchen. And by popped, I mean the seam in my 1960 oak floor lifted like a surfers wave cresting at the peak, accompanied by softer rolling waves of elevated wood.

Then my kitchen faucet developed a leak, which I didn’t think could cause so much damage. Maybe the dishwasher broke a pipe or something? I checked under the sink and noticed it was damp. Uh oh. Perhaps the water traveled under the kitchen and came to rest in the dining room. Down on my hands and knees, surveying the damage, I noticed the bottom of one cabinet showed water marks. I thought: that’s not good.

But wait, there’s even more!

My Jacuzzi tub refuses to provide hot water when I’m in the mood for a relaxing soaking. Luke warm is the best I get. What’s that all about? And as if that’s not enough, my upstairs faucet has joined in the fun and now has a leak of its own. And did I mention my water pressure from my kitchen faucet is more like a trickle? I didn’t? Well, there you go.

This water-related conspiracy began when I so boldly proclaimed very little has gone wrong in my home. So maybe there is something to this myth after all. Well friends, you can learn from my mistake by refraining from boasting that a certain something has never happened to you because odds are it now definitely will.

Take it from me, it’s the kiss of death.

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