Mystery solved! I guess I didn’t get the memo about putting a nylon knee high over the drainage hoses that come out of the washing machine. When my washing machine emptied, it wasn’t getting past a 23 year collection of lint clog. The water then backed up out of the sewer drain. It just so happens that my mom was reading a column in the Bismarck Tribune on New Year’s Day. The guy for some cosmic reason just happened to write about sewer care. He suggested dissolving one cup of salt and one cup of baking soda in very warm water and dumping this down the clogged drain. I actually repeated this process a couple of time. Later that afternoon when I checked in on the progress, I noticed that the sewer evidently burped up something. Because of the shape of the clumps and their brownish color the whole mess could have been something extremely disgusting. I didn’t smell anything so I got up the nerve to make a closer inspection. Sure enough the “clumps” were soggy lint balls. There were lots of these clumps of sogginess all over the floor and plenty of them. I am thinking 23 years of several “dry-clean only” sweaters that I snuck in the wash. The clumps were somewhat disgusting to clean up but nothing compared to literally the shit I could have been cleaning up. So now I am happy to report 5 showers later (taken by my son), 4 baths later (taken by me), 2 loads of dishes and 7 loads of laundry [ 5 loads from my sons trip to Germany (and no they don’t wash clothes in Germany but that is for another blog)], the laundry room floor remains dry! The forecast for the New Year was looking brighter. I say ‘was’ because the next day I experienced a very disturbing incident. I was on my way to work and stopped by Hardees on the way to get a large diet Coke.
RV: Come on….
ME: Shut up
(Bear with me, the voices give up after a week)
Anyway, a large pop (I say pop, not soda) costs $2.03 which is highway robbery. I went inside to make the purchase because I like to fill the cup mostly with ice. It takes some of the quilt away of drinking huge amounts of diet coke. I got out the exact change to pay for my pop when this very nice young man said, “That will be $1.87.” I had my $2.03 already lying on the counter so I looked up at him and said, “I thought it coast $2.03.” His answer was that it he had given me THE (pronounced with a long e) DISCOUNT. For a fraction of a second it didn’t register. Then it hit me. “THE DISCOUNT” is The Senior Citizen Discount. OMG, this kid thinks I am a senior citizen! I could only thank him graciously for the discount, but as soon as I got to my car I burst into tears. I have no idea what Hardees senior discount policy is. Whatever it is, it makes a huge difference to me if it is 55 or 65 or older. Of course the next day I have to try this again. A different young man waited was working, but he also gave me THE DISCOUNT. (Remember so pronounce that with a long ‘e’. Pronunciation with a short ‘e’ is a special price regardless of age) I would be enjoying my 32 cents savings except it is eating at me if these guys think I am 55, 65, or older. If they think I am 55, I guess that is OK because I am 55. If they think I am 65, I think I am going to need counseling. Naturally I try again the next day. This time the woman who is the morning manager was working. She charges me $2.03 which I gladly pay. However, my curiosity is so strong that I try to do some recon action. I politely ask her if Hardees had a senior citizen discount program. WELL, she gives me this really dirty look like I was trying to cheat the multi-billion dollar fast food chain out of 16 cents. She looked at me so disgustingly that I felt really bad for even asking. Worse yet, her begrudgingly answer was no help at all. She said, “Ya but, it is like 55 or 65, something like that.” After 3 day, 132 ounces of diet coke, and 27 trips to the bathroom, I am no closer to the truth. Did the two young men think I was older than 65? Did the woman manager think I was a stingy, old lady trying to bring down Hardees profits by 16 cents, one diet coke at a time? I wish I could say that I vowed never to frequent Hardees and that I would much rather wait 15 minutes at the drive up at McDonalds then ever give Hardees another cent. Sadly, that isn’t the case. The next day I took my son to breakfast at Hardees. They have caramel crumb biscuit to die for.