Once my kids reached a certain age, I figured that I could stop worrying about them doing some rather foolish things. Like choking on grapes for example, or setting their bedrooms on fire. I would hear stories my friends told about their kids/grand kids etc. doing silly things and think to myself, "Thank God my kids never did anything dumb like that." I figured wrong.
Last night, I was doing some accounting for The Boy at my desk. I haven't been at my desk lately for much, because it is in the other side of the house from the family room, and having a laptop I am free to compute where I want. But I was on my way out the door to go drum, and figured I'd get the invoice done real quick before I left.
That's when I heard it. Drip. Drip. Drip. I stopped typing. I looked out the window, to be sure it wasn't in fact raining, and then I hollered. Loudly. The boy came right away. I babbled something incoherent about broken pipes or a fire in the wall (electric fires crackle in walls). He checked the closet where the pipes for the upstairs bathroom are.. and they were all intact. That's when he saw the water dripping out of the dining room ceiling. If you look at that photo.. where the support pieces are for the old fashioned drop ceiling, that's where they were dripping. The water started to come down faster so I went for the buckets and he went upstairs.
He had just given Mr. Man a haircut, and in our house, a haircut is followed by a shower. So he opens the door, and discovers 1. the sink is on 2. water is flowing out of the sink, down the front an onto the floor and 3. Mr. Man is in the shower. So he hollers at him. I go upstairs to see WTF is going on, and I swear to god I saw red. Not just like the saying.. but physically saw a haze of red in my eyes. See, the story goes, that Mr. Man was rinsing hair off his hands in the sink. And he pulled up the stopper so he could submerge them under the water. And then he got in the shower. Didn't realize that the sink was one. When questioned by his irrational mother, "Didn't you hear the water hitting the floor?!" he answered rather pointedly that he was in the shower and all he heard was water. (duh!)
The water, fortunately, due to the uneven floors in our 160+ year old house, ran to the bathroom door, where it met up with the wood floor in the hall and went straight down. It found a release in the dining room ceiling but not before it caused those old thin wood drop ceiling panels to buckle. I dumped out half a pail (those big oval ones you can fit a mop in).. and 1/4 of a pail of water today. There seems to be no damage to the bathroom, nor the hallway, nor the wood floor in the dining room. I heard the water right as it started to drip. If I had been anywhere else, it would've been ugly.
I might've yelled. Loud. Maybe crazy like. No one said much. I might have taken away privileges until further notice. I didn't swear at the boy (not that I remember), nor did I harm him. I didn't have a beer before I left either, no matter how much I was tempted. Probably it was a good thing that I left. After an hour of drumming I was maybe a bit more rational. He was still up when I got back. I told him I realized it was an honest accident, and I know he didn't mean to flood the house. But he is almost 12 and I expect him to be more responsible than to do a dumb thing like that. He lost his phone/video games until Saturday and no youth group this week. He realized quick that he got off the hook easy and was quiet and didn't say much.
Upon telling this story to my dearest girlfriend at school this morning, she laughed right out loud and told me a story of how her son flooded their bathroom.. when he was 12. Go figure.