When I moved to Brighton. I was full of awe and wonder. I'd run away from London with two fingers in the air to the Big Smoke and my face basically looked like this:
|This isn't me. This is a child. I am a 24 year old woman. I just like the 3D glasses.|
People smiled in the streets! You could walk everywhere in twenty minutes. The houses were long and tall! There was one working pier and one dead pier! The lamp-posts looked really steampunk! Everyone had tattoos! (Give me some credit, I was 21). Everything was going so well! I moved into a beautiful house not far from the centre of town with two stunning flatmates who were able to move all of my rubbish up too many flights of stairs. The lights worked! We were unfurnished, so we could do whatever we wanted to the sofas we acquired! JOY!
Recently however, I have come to face a shocking fact. The fact is this. My boiler is evil. I am more than 90% sure that it has a brain, and that brain is 75% evil.
This is our totally awesome, perfectly installed boiler. Note the cutting edge blue light, which up until a month ago I was quite fond of, because it matched my hair:
|Totally awesome boiler.|
However, since the boiler and I were left alone together for a couple of weeks, the love has turned to resentment. Like an old married couple we keep to separate rooms. I try not too look it in the eye, try to leave it to its own devices, but it always comes down to a situation where I have to turn it on. I no longer enjoy looking at its comforting blue lights and competent manual. No. When I look at our totally awesome boiler now, all I see is this:
Totally UNAWESOME boiler and I first ran into troubles one night after the weekly film club that is held at The Haus of Goth. It'd been pretty cold throughout the whole film, but five people in one room had warmed the place adequately enough that we thought the heating was on. Alas, we soon discovered, this was not the case. On completion of said film, and after switching all the switches, getting up the online videos, many internet conversations and a plea to facebook to anyone who might know anything about why totally-awesome-at-the-time boiler might have broken and an intercontinental text message that never got through, four girls and an androgyne STILL couldn't fix the heating. There was lots of yelling, followed by lots of things thrown at totally-awesome-at-the-time-but-getting-less-so-boiler, followed by a bit of vodka. Then, we gave up. I wrapped up warm for bed and everyone left.
The next morning I called the agency. Anyone that's lived in a rented house knows that contacting Estate Agencies is about as easy as trying to get half your sonic screwdriver back from inside a space shark (*1). After calling them up on the hour every hour, and employing the tactic of being overly nice about it "OHAI! Yeah, it's the girl from The Haus Of Goth again! Yeah, I was just wondering if you guys had managed to hear back from the plumber at all in the last hour? NO! Oh, well, I'll call again in an hour or so! THANKS!" (*2)
Eventually said agency relented, told me the plumber wasn't working that day, but they'd get him to come tomorrow morning. Whilst my brain contemplated an evening/morning of tundra-like conditions inside a blanket fort and an eternity of cold showers, said agency informed me that the plumber's name was Cyrus. My brain immediately did this:
|Put the bunny back in the boiler.|
Followed by a short battle in my head in which a conversation with Cyrus the Virus vs being able to sleep worrying that Cyrus the Virus might come through my window and murder me in the sleep took place. Eventually, I settled on the idea that Cyrus was instead Lord of all Plumbing and was ready to charge to my rescue tomorrow on his white horse.
So I go home. I have an evening of vodka related warmth, I snuggle up in my coat and I sleep. I try again in vain to get the boiler working, but it still won't respond. I relent and call my father, only to be faced with nothing. No one can figure out what's wrong with the boiler, that's sitting in the corner all the time smirking. At some point during this temperature challenged evening totally-awesome-boiler becomes totally UNAWESOME boiler.
I wake up the next morning. I wait. Cyrus knows I have to leave by one 'o clock. Half twelve rolls around. I write some more of my novel. I play with my cat, who seems oblivious to the cold. I give up, perform a ritual voodoo chant on Cyrus's head, and leave.
My phone rings once I'm two streets away from work. It's Cyrus. He tells me he's right outside, and that the agency have failed to inform him that I need to get to work by the afternoon. I sigh. I call work, tell them I'm going to be later. Trudge back to find Cyrus standing outside with some tools. He is not a Virus, or even a pagan war-god set to wage war against poor blue-haired girl hating boilers, but in fact a plumber from Hove who didn't like tea.
Cyrus walked in. Checked the boiler. Frowned. Asked me where the thermostat was (*3). Found the thermostat. Poked it, and frowned again. Using his powers of plumbing bequeathed to him by the gods of all water systems, deduced that the thermostat was on backwards.
My face looked a little like this:
|(For some unknown reason, I offered Cyrus a cup of tea at this point. I think I went into automatic mode. He declined.)|
After I'd recovered from the shock, and Cyrus had turned the thermostat up and down to demonstrate to me his theory was correct, he performed an intricate and delicate job that only the most skilled of plumbers could carry out.
He re-labelled the thermostat.
I went to work laughing. Cyrus promised to get someone out to fix the backwards thermostat. They never came.
I am now working on a theory that involves the boiler and said thermostat in a conspiracy against me. Whenever I am alone in the house, they never work. One or the other of them malfunctions, leaving me stranded and cold - half-naked and about to shower. This morning, after I prised myself out of my Kigu, the water wouldn't go on, and the heating turns itself on and off at times its not programmed to.
So I offer a question up to you, oh people of the internet. How can I make my boiler like me again? I've tried offering it flowers, roses, hugs. I've tried talking sweetly to it in the dead of night. I've tried fixing it a Scotch-Ka (*3a). I've tried turning it off and on again. I've even tried blowing on it. If I am to survive through to the New Year with the days I have off, I must make peace with it!
I fear some sort of Stephen King-esk household appliance based death. If I go quiet all of a sudden, please feel safe in the knowledge that the boiler, enraged by my inernet-based rant and subsiquent photoshop based dig, has probably grown legs and impaled me with its pipes. (*4)
That girl with the blue hair.
*1 Dr Who and any references to said Christmas specials are copyright Steven Moffat and the BBC respectively
*2 Let me add here, although it might seem so from this blog, I am not unemployed. I have a very important job in a very busy pharmacy that I love. Calling on the hour every hour WAS NOT helping.
*3 Thoughts running through my head: "Oh, balls.. The Thermostat. Didn't think of that."
*3a You're tearing me apart, Lisa.
*4 But that's ok, because I'll probably also be being eaten by my cat. I like my cat.