There are certain things that a man should be able to do. I can't do them. Having a sense of direction, for example. I don't have one. When I first arrived in Korea I had to flag down a stranger to speak to my new boss on the phone and then follow said stranger back to my apartment because I was lost. I followed the stranger about 10 metres. I was right outside my place.
I am also incapable of growing a beard. I get a sort of porny looking moustache after 4 or 5 days but the effect is not what you might call rugged. Remember what the Indian lad in your class looked like when you were 12? Well I look like that. I'm 24.
As well as these severely emasculating qualities, I am utterly pathetic when it comes to DIY. I can't complete the most rudimentary of tasks. I once shattered my parents' bathroom light-fitting when trying to change a bulb. True story. So, quite silly was it of me to attempt some plumbing last night when already stressed out by some computer troubles. Let me explain.
My laptop failed on me the other night. It just wouldn't turn on. Bad news, obviously, but I was mostly backed up and it wasn't that big of a deal. In fact, it would give me the opportunity to do something I had been planning on doing for a while and upgrade to Windows 7. I downloaded a pirated copy and read the instructions thoroughly before embarking on my quest while Kendra went to the supermarket. It worked. Kind of. My computer is a temperamental being at the best of times. In a startlingly obvious comparison to it's owner, it baulks at heavy work and has been known to scream - literally, scream - when asked to do two things at once. So, when I asked it to install a new operating system whilst simultaneously running Windows Vista it just went, "Are you bloody serious?" and proceeded to scream WHIRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRR to the point where I felt it best to step away from it so that the inevitable explosion didn't do anymore damage to my, already flamboyantly shaped, face.
Anyway, with the computer bitching away and the screen looking like it was permanently in safe mode, I decided to have a break from it and take a nice, relaxing shower. I removed my clothes (easy, now) and swaggered into the bathroom with the manner of a fellow who can take any washing ritual in his stride. I turned on the taps and let the heartbreakingly lukewarm water flow through my fingers. Our shower has not been hot for a month or so now. I remember this being a problem in winter last year, but my apartment had a tap located under the shower head which, if adjusted, would allow more hot water through and sacrifice a little water pressure in order to get the heat back. Our new apartment doesn't have this nifty little feature however, as some smart-arse decided to install a bath tub where one doesn't belong thus covering up our Hot Water Displacement Faucet (I believe that is the correct technical term). On every day prior to this one I had just sucked up this frustration and satisfied myself with a little bitch about the water not being hot enough but, after the computer fiasco, I wasn't going to let any other inanimate objects get the better of me. I returned to the living room, stole a 100 won coin from our penny jar (nearly peeling my fingernails off in the process) and stormed back to the bath tub. With the water still running I inserted the coin into a screw located on the hot water tap which I was certain would allow more water through in the same way as the Hot Water Displacement Faucet. I turned and turned and turned and I remember very clearly thinking, just before the final turn as I felt the pressure build beneath my fingers, that there was no way the screw would be forced out by the water and fly into the air...
The screw was forced out by the water and flew into the air followed by a gushing stream of the lukewarm water I was neglecting to shower in. The stream shot directly into my face (that's what she said) and sent the screw into a graceful arc towards the bathtub with me scrambling after it to stop it falling down the drain. The water continued to stream into the air encouraging me to do my naked dance of panic which I hadn't busted out in a while. With water being forced into my every facial orifice, I tried gallantly to force the screw back into place which resulted in two more desperate leaps to save the screw from going down the drain. Finally, after - I swear to God - 10-15 minutes and a Google search on the one computer in the flat which didn't sound like a hair dryer, the screw was back in its little hole, albeit with a bit of black rubber sticking out and a not insignificant fountain of water creeping out of the side. I showered, in water that was now not only lukewarm of temperature but also low of pressure, and retired to my comfortable trousers to await the bollocking from my Canadian girlfriend.
"We've spoken about this before," she sighed, tossing a bag of peanut M&M's in my direction to keep me occupied. "What are you not to do?"
"DIY," I muttered, admiring my fluffy slippers and wondering, not for the first time, what a pair of underpants made with the same lining would feel like.
"And with me out of the house! What were you thinking?!"
"Sorry, Kendra. Want an M&M?"
She rolled her trousers up, oblivious to my warnings of geysers of terror, and faced the task with purpose. As I watched, she put the plug into the drain (pure genius) removed the offending screw, reorganised the little black rubber thing (a seal, apparently) and replaced it with a flourish and a condescending glance over her shoulder.
My computer still isn't working properly. I think I got water on it.
Love, Smithy x