Last night I was getting ready for bed and walked down to my office, dropped off some papers on my desk, and walked back upstairs… only to notice a splosh splosh splosh noise when I got to the wooden stairs. Why were my shoes wet? Oh no…

Oh yes. The 2nd floor toilet overflowed, flooding the room below… and it had been happening all evening whenever the washing machine drained the water from the basin. I don’t understand plumbing half as well as any other facet of home repair, so I don’t really grok why this is happening, but as we spent two hours troubleshooting, the reason became abruptly clear as the washing machine drained in the middle of our trying to clean up the mess. I’ve never seen quite a sight as a toilet rapidly rising and overflowing while I desperately tried to stop the mess with about 20 towels and three buckets (turns out the buckets are useless… the water adheres to the sides of the toilet, it doesn’t cascade over like a waterfall). It was like something out of a movie. A horror movie.

A real nightmare and certain to be an expensive one — we’re going to need at least a new ceiling and new carpet below. But first — and this post is a long way of asking for help on this — anyone have a great plumber in San Francisco?

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Christopher Null

Christopher Null is a veteran technology journalist and the owner of Null Media, a custom blogging company.