Inkie's Hammer and Saw
How-To Column of Home Improvement
I seem to be having trouble with water seeping into my basement after
heavy rains. What should I do? -- Anais
A. Dear Anais,
A: The kindly doctor of brick and mortar scratches his sparsely-haired noodle,
and then his belly-button, and cogitates most fervently upon your question. He
has come up with several suggestions.
1) Move to Egypt. Here, it is perpetual drought, and when the Nile does rise and
fields aflood, people move back. At least in this case it is not rains, just
Nile overfloods, and since the contemporary Nile now has the Aswan Dam, you
never will have to worry again.
2) Bottle the water and sell it to yuppies in search of the nearest Poland
Springs or whatever.
3) There's some sort of paintable substance that Inkie himself (yes, in real
life) used some odd years ago to prevent rain "ooze" from "oozilations"
into his basement. One is supposed to wait for said leaking surfaces to become
dry, but Inkie has his moments of impatience, and waited for said surfaces to
become merely "damp". For some odd unsubstantiated reason, Inkie has
never again seen water ooze creeping maliciously into his basement. He thinks
this must be due to the gods he gave obnoxiously craven offerings to, prior to
the paint treatment.
Q. Dear Inkie,
Whatever can I do about "ice dams", those unfortunate frozen morasses
that form on portions of my roof, and destroy it, the gutters, and also leak
into my house at odd spots when they warm up enough? -- Ice Maiden
A. Inkie attempts to give a several-part solution here, just in time
for end of winter.
1) Move SOUTH, Ice Maiden. It was good enough for the migrating birds, it should
be good enough for you. Egypt, for instance, is never plagued by ice dams.
2) As with Anais, consider this another yuppie water source. Bottle and sell. (Inkie
3) Inkie had one of these once (okay, more than once), and called in a
professional to clear it off his roof. Unfortunately said professional fell off
said roof. (Yes, in real life.) Inkie was lucky in that he didn't have a
litigatious said professional on said roof. Inkie now has a tool called a
"roof rake", which you assemble as long as you like, and which will
fall apart no matter what you do when you most need it, leaving bits of itself
up way up upon your roof, where you are not apt to access them to repair it, but
at least roof rakes have never been known to be litigatious, whether broken or
whole. You do have to remember to use the thing for as long as it is
cooperative, as immediately after snowfall as possible. If you wait, all those
innumerable snowflakes, not one alike any other one, will merge together over
your roof to form a Borg-like assimilated conglomerate of ICE.
4) Just avoid snow. At least anything more than those dusting levels of snow. Or
take up the hibernation habits of bears.
Dr. Inkompotep Neferbath is by day a physician, but at night a
home improvement guru.
Please leave him your
home improvement questions to be answered in the next issue of The PanHistorian.