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Friday, Apr. 18, 2014
The Sistine ShowerPosted Sunday, January 27, 2013, at 4:49 PM
If there is one ting I hate more than communists in the government trying to take away the freedoms of American citizens, it's waking up in the dark!
This has made the morning shower an essential part of my wake up ritual.
Among the things on the four-age "To Do" list of "She Who Must Be Obeyed was replace/remodel the shower.
Hmmmm ... a project that just might benefit me.
It must be noted there is nothing too expensive for my beloved's taste. Long time readers may recall the kitchen remodel, which "absolutely required" black chrome over solid brass knobs and handles. These cost more than $6 each. Do you have any idea how many drawers and cabinet doors are in a 1970s middle class kitchen? Answer: 29.
The shower project has been much the same.
We absolutely had to have a shower bas that was 42-inches wide by 60-inches long. You can't find those here. It was a special order only item.
When the base arrived, it became apparent that the walls had to be stripped to the studs and one wall even had to have the studs removed to be replaced by 2-by-2's.
Now, the toilet would be touching the future shower enclosure. The toilet had to be taken out and moved. That means re-doing the plumbing and replacing the vinyl on the floor.
But that was not enough. "She Who Must Be Obeyed" determined that even though the toilet worked just fine, it was outdated and must be replaced with a new one.
Because Washington D.C. knows best, the only option for new toilets is "low flow."
Are you familiar with the reputation of low flow toilets? There isn't enough water volume to carry the load and they frequently clog.
After hours and hours of research, a toilet with a reputation for being able to really haul the mail was selected. Again, my beloved insisted the price was not to be considered.
Now that the toilet has been installed in its new location, the vanity wouldn't fit.
Have you ever noticed that "standard" vanities only come in two or three-foot sizes? Neither do I. The two-and-one-half-foot wide vanity we "needed" was yet another custom order.
Back to the shower.
A wider base means the floor drain was in a different place.
Unfortunately, the new drain was directly over a floor joist. Ten trips to the hardware store later, this problem was finally overcome.
To my horror, some Nazi, deep in the administrative bowels of Washington, mandated that shower heads shall not issue forth a single dram more than 2.5 gallons of water per minute.
To avoid costly litigation, manufacturers stay a healthy margin below that.
How can a person take a decent shower under such conditions? My morning ritual may be destroyed and the morning fog in my head could linger into the day!
While looking into how to import showerheads and valves from Canada, I discovered an underground website for members of the resistance.
It was called "A Libertarian Approach to Showers."
I felt like a teenager who had stumbled upon a stash of adult magazines in the woods.
Like a hippy with an underground copy of the "Anarchist Cookbook," I went to work. With the help of a drill press and a few other tools, I was in business.
Bonus! Among the glorious ideas suggested by the website was installing multiple valves and showerheads. Finally, the breakthrough I had been hoping for.
To finish the job, the shower walls had to be tiled. The Sistine Chapel at the Vatican would be our guide.
Between each valve and showerhead, we installed a Mediterranean style tile mural of fountains, birds and flowers. In the center of the biggest wall is a large diamond of pool water blue glass tile.
As if marking the points for a box around the diamond are overlapping squares of blue, yellow and green glass mosaic tile.
The same was done extending beyond the corners of the murals to help tie it all together. Finally, two strips of blue tile, one 18-inches above the basin and one around the top tie it all together as if by a bow.
I expect the Pope himself would be proud to bathe under the crossing sprays of our new shower.
Finally, my beloved was happy and my morning ritual has been enhanced.
In the new shower, my eyes open more readily and the fog in my brain dissipates more quickly.
Finally, the victory was mine.
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