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Who Needs a Shower Anyway?

How’s our shower pan leak going?

Oh, swell, thanks for asking!

We’ve really made remarkable progress since I first documented My Sh*tty Morning in a post almost 3 weeks ago.  Here are some photos to highlight the transformation:

Screen shot 2014-11-13 at 10.19.32 AMSure, the doorknob is still broken and surrounded by shards of pointy metal, but look how much less wrinkly the duct tape is now!

Screen shot 2014-11-13 at 10.19.56 AMThe real magic is still inside the bathroom though.  As you can see, we’re down to one fan now and we’ve also moved the boot and the floor mat.  Remarkably there have been no urgent care visits resulting from the threshold of exposed carpet nails.


Some of you might be thinking to yourselves, “Wow, I think maybe 17 days is an adequate amount of time to get this mess taken care of.”

Oh, dear god, I wish it were.

I bought my first house when I was 22….I’ve coordinated the details for a full home remodel of a 1911 Craftsman….I’ve spent half my life negotiating my way through the ‘3 bid’ rule of thumb for just about every home repair imaginable, but I’ve never run into anything like this.

The day after this mess started, I scheduled the recommended three bids to come out.

The first challenge: The crazy housing growth in Austin means that everyone is busy and no one ‘needs’ the work. Just getting people to come out and take a look to get an estimate can take a few days.  I’m still waiting on the actual estimate from one guy that came over a week ago.

So, by the time you get someone there (+2 days), and then get their estimate (+3 days) and then realize they are batsh*t crazy for thinking we need to retile the entire bathroom (start from square one), you find yourself almost three weeks later, still showering in the kids’ bathroom amongst battleship bath-toys and Disney themed hooded towels.

I’m kind of the Goldilocks of shower repairs: Some recommendations are too hard core (re-tiling the entire bathroom to ensure the stone ‘matches’), and some are too scrappy (“Let’s just cut the the bottom 4″ out of the 12″ tile and then we’ll patch it in with the little 2×2 floor tiles!”).  I just want a solid, normal, honest person to come fix my shower (and JUST my shower) for somewhere between the existing bids of $750 and $5500, sometime before Christmas.

My 10:00 appointment this mornings was pretty much my last ray of hope, but he just left after saying “I don’t think we’re the right company for this.” I would have thought that was kind of a strange response if it weren’t for the fact that he’s the third person who has told me that in the past two weeks.  Apparently people are scared half out of their mind by travertine.

The last nice man who gave me a similar “I would not be good at this job” response coincidentally used to live about 5 blocks from our  house in Seattle.  He couldn’t do a damn thing about my shower, but we had a lovely chat about the old neighborhood and the kringles at Larsen’s bakery.

Mmmmm…a Larsen’s kringle would sure make me feel better right now……and I wonder if our Seattle renters would mind if I dropped by for a shower.

Find out what happens next at “Help Me Remodel TWO Bathrooms.”





The Dusty Parachute by Susanne Kerns
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6 thoughts to “Who Needs a Shower Anyway?”

  1. One question. Did you have carpet in your bathroom? What’s w/ the carpet? Also, what is going on in your bathroom that no one can fix it? That contractors in this line of work are fleeing from your house?

    1. Excellent questions. No, we did not have carpet in our bathroom (although we did look at a few houses that did….and yuck…mostly because we have so much pet fur in our house I don’t really need to have little wet fur slippers made for me every time I step out of the shower). We do have carpet in the walk in closet that is on the other side of the bathroom (right next to the shower….thus the wet carpet part of the ordeal). As far as why the contractors were fleeing….they ‘said’ it’s because they weren’t qualified to work with travertine. I think that what actually happened is that I scared them away with my collection of wine glasses and bras drying in the bathroom. We have made exciting progress today – will post pictures later. Can you come help me pick out paint colors now, please?

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