Toilet’s leaking. Every five minutes it slurps in more water pssssh for a second. I figured the tank was losing a smidge of water and refilling. Just to make sure I looked it up on Mr. Internet and yes indeedy it’s a flapper issue. An easy fix. You drain the tank, pull off the old flapper, go to the hardware store with it and have the nice lady pick you out a new matching one, and snap it back on. So I did. Felt pretty cool about it too, especially since I injected the enterprise with extra virtue by walking two miles to the hardware store and back.

It worked great! If what I was after was having it slurp in more water pssssh every minute instead of every five minutes.

So Mr. Internet has a million entries on replacing a flapper, and all of them agree on the procedure, and that it’s a slam dunk. Guess what? If you search for “replaced flapper toilet still leaking” you get another million hits. Hey, it’s a thing! Unfortunately this fix isn’t as easy, but there’s a replacement kit you can install in your toilet. Adhesive is involved. This is starting to sound like plumbing.

The other thing it’s starting to sound like is computers. Suddenly I’m not so confident that the new fix is actually going to work. Suddenly I’m not as motivated to even try. It’s like what happens when something you’ve always done on the computer quits working. You Google it. You go to the search bar and type: “blog blows up for no fucking reason.”

You get back a whole forum. Someone out there has the exact same problem as you. Cool! She puts it out to the community and gets answers. They sound something like this:

“Sounds like it’s probably a function of an overactive html weasel. Try going into the Computer Intestines tab and pull down the Flappination menu. Click ‘weasel hyperactivity’ and uncheck the ‘flappination is on’ box. Click save settings. Now open a new document and let a fourteen-pound cat stroll across the keyboard.  Highlight and copy result. Open your browser and go to File>Settings>WeaselControl and paste the code into the box. Hit Save. Close out this window and open another window, look for the toolbar that is not available on your model, close out, click the Install button, check the box that says you agree to do whatever Victoria or Nelson in Bombay says, click Shut Down, wait twelve hours, and restart. That should do it.”

Sure enough, there’s a cheery note underneath from the original questioner that says “Thanks a lot, Splatmaster, that worked great!” So you give it a go.

The next day you go to the neighbor’s house to borrow their computer and search for “Computer poots out blue smoke at reboot.”

I turned off the water intake valve for the toilet and mentally clicked “Ignore.” I had laundry to do. Laundry I understand. Within the hour, I had achieved serenity. It’s done with wooden clothespins in your mouth. All your sheets and towels and underpants are on the line. Solar power is brought to bear for free. Everything dries crisp. It’s a beautiful dang thing. Works first time, every time.