As your dedicated but humble correspondent, I always look for ways to elevate you as a scholar in the discipline of home repairs. So for YOUR benefit, not mine, I have just returned from a 2-week “sabbatical,” going thousands of miles away and thousands of years back, in GREECE. I hope you benefit from these observations taken well outside my typical, limited handyman vantage points, like while peeking above the rim of a toilet, or when hunched over in a very hot or cold dark attic, or with my body twisted and stuffed into a kitchen cabinet.
Up until this odyssey, I had assumed that the SUBDIVISION represented human civilization’s crowning achievement, and it would be difficult for mankind to EVER surpass today’s use of vinyl plank floors, LED lighting, and doorbells that can actually talk back to you.
But on the contrary, your humble correspondent returned humbler still, wondering if Man had actually made ANY progress in home repairs over the course of history. In fact, these places were SO competitive with home repair practices here today that in this Fix St Louis newsletter I’ll have them square-off in an imagined Athens vs St Louis Home Repair Modern Olympic Games. Let the games begin!
Front Porch Columns
Many of our customers eventually have problems with deteriorating front porch columns, and Fix St Louis is proud of our work repairing or replacing them, often with fiberglass materials that don’t rot. There are all kinds of varieties of porch columns to choose from: square, round, fluted, raised panel, sunken panel, and those with brick bases. There are even decorative caps and bases, including Doric, Ionic, and Corinthian that mimic the Greeks.
So you can imagine my surprise when I came across the porch columns above, which I refer to as the six “Load-Bearing Ladies.” They’ve been balancing that porch roof on their heads for 2,400 years which, sad to say, exceeds our Fix St Louis one-year warranty by roughly 2,399 years. So, Advantage Athens.
At one point, not so many years ago, America’s toilets were the envy of the world. Just flip a lever and a 6-7 gallon gusher would send just about anything down to its final reward, including an occasional ashtray deposited by Junior (say, whatever HAPPENED to those ashtrays that were once a fixture in every home, anyway?).
But just as the Greeks had to contend with the Romans, Americans have been under the thumb of “Potty Des-POTS,” unaccountable Washington regulators who won’t be happy until toilets require NO water to flush at all, and operate only with our own spit.
For whatever reason, Greeks don’t seem to have our potty problems. Not only do their toilets boast a surplus of water to get everything down without need for a plunger, some even have nearby handles that when turned provide even MORE water, delivering it to an unexpected and embarrassing place that has had me puzzled ever since.
But in the meantime, until the American people rise up with torches, plungers, and pitchforks, establishing the freedom to flush as a God-given right that shall not be abridged, Fix St Louis can help. There definitely are toilets that work much better than others, and we’d be glad to install them for you. Until then, Advantage Athens.
Now, this home feature ALONE may have made the American Revolution worth the cost. America’s relatively greater freedom vs. the rest of the world has arguably given us the prosperity necessary to make hot, long-lasting showers within the reach of just about everyone. We now have gas and electric water heaters that CONTINUE to create hot water even while the tank is draining, so you’re much less likely to run out in the middle of a shower.
Now I don’t want to put the Greeks down because, after all, they did invent some very useful things like, I dunno, mathematics, astronomy, medicine, democracy, philosophy, theater, and architecture. But, I mean, just look at the contraption above that I saw on most roofs – a stainless steel tank hitched to a solar energy panel. For real? How long is THAT hot shower going to last, assuming the water is actually HOT in the first place? And try taking a shower at night when the sun isn’t out.
At Fix St Louis, there are a lot of things we can do to improve your shower experience. Yes, we can replace your old water heater so that your showers are hotter and last longer, but we can also surround you with beautiful ceramic tiles, ONYX walls that have no grout to maintain, better shower valves, faucets, and shower heads, not to mention frameless and clear shower doors. So, Advantage St Louis.
Respect for Handymen
Don’t get me wrong. We at Fix St Louis are quite proud of what we do, and believe we provide valuable services that often require a great deal of skill. We regularly hear appreciation from our customers, and frankly that feels pretty good.
On the other hand, maybe I was born a couple of millenia too late, when handymen could be worshiped as GODS. Meet Hephaestus (see picture above), the Greek god of blacksmiths, metalworking, carpenters, craftsmen, artisans, sculptors, metallurgy, fire, and volcanoes. In other words, he’s a handyman, am I right? And not only was this handyman one of the top 10 Greek GODS, he married Aphrodite, the goddess of love and beauty. So he also GOT THE GIRL!, something all-too-rare among us handymen. Tragically, Aphrodite cheated on him, so even back then a high maintenance woman didn’t want no maintenance man. Nevertheless, Advantage Athens.
So if we now tally-up the score it looks like – OH NO!, Athens beat St Louis! Not sure this scoring system was all that scientific, so let’s just say that St Louis came within the margin of error. But if you don’t want errors in your home repairs, the obvious choice is calling Fix St Louis. And unlike some handyman gods I might mention, while we like being appreciated, no worship is required.
Fix St Louis