It’s All Relative

albert einstein

“I should write a theory about this.”

On Friday night Jill and I came home from a St. Patrick’s Day party at Pino’s liquor store and discovered the hot water heater had blown out. So I spent the early morning hours mopping up 40 gallons of water from the basement floor.

I told my dad we had no hot water, and he mentioned that the tenement apartment he’d grown up in had never had hot water—unless they heated it in a kettle on the stove. I was surprised to hear this. Sure, my dad grew up a while ago, but I’d always associated “no hot water” with the Stone Age. Actually, I believe Fred Flintstone had hot water; I think he forced a dinosaur to ride a bicycle at gunpoint and somehow make it happen.

My dad said that when he joined the army, he was assigned to a cold barracks with coal-powered heat—but there was running hot water. Most of the other guys said the place was a dump, but hey, when he turned the faucet hot water came out! He thought it was luxury living.

Tomorrow we’re getting a new hot water heater installed. Right now the water is cold but I’m not complaining.

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6 Responses to It’s All Relative

  1. Great post. I’m trying to apply this theory as well. I get upset about little things when compared to the heavy duty situations a hell of a lot of other people are dealing with. Seeing things in a broader perspective makes a huge difference in the happiness department.

  2. It’s not really that bad. Hot water does sound luxurious after 3 days without it. Wouldn’t want to do 18 years. Your dad is a tough guy.

  3. Ben Walker says:

    Sorry bout your ordeal. I’ve had the water and heating off too. It’s still minus plenty up here too.

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