The Adventures of Captain Pooper or Standing in the Standing Water
A man with the right connections knows exactly when the Murphy family is moving in to help out. This week on Sunday the neighbor was employing the local “You Poop We Pump” experts at their home across the street. Joe said to me better get that man over here, because we are long overdue for a poop levitation seance. Turns out it was 5 years 4 months since the last exorcism (out, out damn poo). Kevin, the 27 year veteran and owner of AAA Septic, and his son James (3 years on the job) told me they are working 7 days a week trying to keep up with the demand. Why, you might ponder. Joe explains……
Here in the Okanagan Valley we experience what some folks call “weather“. Joe and I have been in the valley since the early ’70’s and we can attest that no two years have been the same. Some of the local charm you might say. This winter we got most of our snow in a 3 day period, falling on hard frozen ground. It was wet, heavy snow that just wouldn’t go away. The temperature stayed around the freezing point of HOH, with most days cloudy, drizzly, rainy, completely still, foggy, and damp. The net result is the ground is frozen about 2 to 4 inches below the surface. The large amount of snow combined with drizzly rainy cloudy misty days has created a 100% humidity slow melt with very little sublimation and almost no ground saturation for the water to disperse. The snow cover is acting as an insulator, stopping the frost from coming out of the ground. To top it off, here in the Coldstream / South BX area we are on a substantial clay bed – the dry well at my house (for septic field overflow) is in excess of 24 feet deep to penetrate the clay layer. Long and short? We low land and clay inhabitants of Vernon are flooding.
Checking out Joe’s theory, we opened up the septic tank well: it was full. Ain’t supposed to be that way – it should be dry with the fluid level in the tank about 6 to 8 inches below the surface. The dry well was full, too. Where’s the humor in that, we ask?
Small mercy in pumping the septic tank on Sunday. The 800 gallon tank was pumped dry and so was the dry well. Good feelings abounded. Job well done, and before the basement could flood. Handshakes all around. Pay the bill in cash and wave bye-bye as the honey wagon drove slowly away.
The system backed up into the basement on Tuesday by noon. Outside of a half dozen toilet flushes and one shower, an 800 gallon tank and 1000 gallon dry well filled completely, then invaded the basement in less than a 24 hour period. Standing water with no place to go. Damned delinquency!
Makes me laugh my ass off, but I don’t do it rolling on the floor, ’cause the floor is wet! Here’s a brief account of what up:
David S. identified two problems on Tuesday morning. One was the downstairs toilet wouldn’t flush properly, and two, the clothes washer wouldn’t drain and was making a smelly noise. I said I’d look at it shortly. Before shortly could happen, there was another concern – the drain in the basement floor was overflowing!!! (Three exclamation alarm). What to do?
I am a seasoned professional. In my most calm dignified manner I welcomed Murphy and his family home. Hell, I welcomed Murphy, his family, and his clan. C’est la vie, c’est la guerre, c’est dommage. The septic tank / dry well for my yurt is located in an immense clay bed stretching for miles in the BX and Coldstream areas. At my humble abode, it is nigh to 30 feet down to clay free soil. In summer heat, the ground will dry and crack, leaving crevasses up to 4 inches wide and who knows how deep. In winters like this, it is another story, a story of saturated clay being a type of vessel, mostly watertight excepting the odd fissure here and seam there of gravel or arable soil .
This phenomenon is entirely caused by the weather. This year the ground froze hard and deep with two months of below zero Celsius, followed by warming and a 3 foot snow dump. The snow is melting very slowly yet insulating the frozen earth. That, with drizzle and rain, is creating a standing water problem. We need some wind to sublimate the snow, and some warmth to thaw the earth so it will absorb the huge lakes of water that abound. Ahoy matey, thar she blows!
Anyway, time to look at the septic tank that had been pumped empty not two days previous.
We removed the surface access cover to find the shaft above the tank to be half full of water. Not good. It is supposed to be dry, with the water level about 6 inches below the lid in the tank. Then we opened the inspection cover of the dry well (it takes excess water from the septic field). The dry well wasn’t very dry; the water was to the top of the inspection hole.
Joe went looking for some sort of pump. He figured pumping out the dry well would drop the water level (not water table) enough to relieve the septic tank. I remembered there was something in the “future foundry” shed and another something in the shop, and another something in one of the trucks; turns out, nothing was suitable. Off to Fischer’s Hardware where Larry Fischer was quite happy to sell us a submersible water pump for the paltry sum of $100.00 Cdn. Other folks from around town were reporting the same news as me – Coldstream is flooding.
David S. helped me string out about 200 feet of hose into the back 40 (I’ve got a small 1.25 acre lot) to the large willow tree. Joe reckoned If that tree is awake, it will soak up a lot of water. We connected the hose to the pump, lowered it into the very wet dry well, and plugged it into house current. It commenced to pump. That was at approximately 5 p.m. Tuesday afternoon. By bedtime at 11:30, the dry well water level was down about 3 feet. On Wednesday morning, the level was down about 7 feet. In a 14 hour period that pump has moved a large quantity of water – the rating at about 5 feet of “head” (pushing the water up against gravity) is 1200 gallons per hour, give or take. On the “take” side of the equation, it has to push the water through 200 feet of hose. We did a quick flow test at the hose end. It easily filled a 2 litre vessel in less than 10 seconds. At that rate, the pump moved about 3000 gallons in the first day, and it isn’t finished the job. You can hear the water filling the dry well. It is more than a drip, less than a flow, somewhere around a steady and strong trickle with the odd gush. Somewhere in the “dry” well, there is a seam or fissure in the clay delivering underground water at a substantial rate.
The house is on a gradual hill. In the back yard, the local equivalent of the Mississippi meanders across the property. I’ve named it “Billy Creek” in honor of my uphill neighbor Bill. In the front yard is a small lake I’ve christened “Swanson’s Pond” as a tribute to my uphill neighbor Nancy. The back 40 also has water from the uphill neighbors. “Lefty Marsh” I’ve named it, after my artsy-fartsy uphill friends Gena and Alec.
Today is Sunday. Still pumping the dry well. Bought a programmable timer for the sump pump on Friday after experimenting for several days with flow over time. It runs 12 hours a day. I set it for a 4 hour cycle – 4 on, 4 off. The temperature was freezing last night, and the hoses started to freeze up inside. Today’s plan is to program the timer for a one hour on-off cycle for the night hours to prohibit ice in the drain hose. The basement drain is not puking on the floor. Life is good!
The weather forecast is for rain and freezing temperatures. What could possibly go wrong?
For now, all is under control. Strike that. For now, the prevailing conditions have been adequately compensated. Gotta love indoor plumbing.
As for the clothes washing machine, it was a different problem. Joe figures a broken one way clutch in the gearbox. Maytag is wonderful. This one lasted at least 20 years. Off to the discount store to find a new one….
My and Joe’s favorite Canadian television channel, Sun TV News, is off the air. Couldn’t find enough support from the populace to keep the doors open. A CRTC decision to NOT include Sun TV News as part of the news “bundle” of Canadian content i.e. “mandatory carriage”, which CBC, CTV, Globe enjoy, crippled the revenue flow. We agitated with TELUS to receive Sun TV programing, and paid an additional fee for the specific “bundle” Sun TV News was grouped with – along with thousands of other Canadians who felt another perspective on current events was helpful to develop an informed opinion – and we decidedly enjoyed the conservative perspective. That it had…… in spades.
The progressive / Liberal populace of our fine country didn’t see it that way. Vituperate is the word that comes to mind. At the Toronto Sun news website (not to be confused with the Sun TV News website, which has been taken down) a short article explaining the closure has close to 3,000 comments (as of Saturday a.m.), a large number (most?) of which are very harsh ad hominum vicious attacks on the staff of the network, hysterical rants about conspiracies, but most commonly, pure hatred of the people who had the audacity to actually watch the programing or who commented favorably about the programing.
Joe and I aren’t surprised, nor are we amused. In a fashion after the holy hope harbinger and change curmudgeon, Saint Barabbas Obambi, I would have a “beer summit” with any and all of the journalists employed by Sun TV (note: I did NOT use quotes around journalist – I felt they did a better job than most). Ironically, I WOULD NOT drink beer with BO. I wouldn’t let him shine my shoes. He is a despicable “man” (note: I DID use quotes around “man”; a personal view)
THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA
Where’s Waldo’s Community Organizer?
The Emperor’s new clothes seems to be a recurring theme in American politics. B Obambi has had a weird smell about him since he mysteriously came onto the scene like a B movie gangster from Chicago. The following video cannot be verified by Joe and me. It gives me great comfort to know that people have not given up on making this case. The details surrounding this person’s life before 2008 is very suspect. The list of anomalies, curiosities, and deceptions is very lengthy. Grab a drink, view it, ponder:
A Star Was Bored
Brian Williams made the news a la Hillarious Clintonian. This is perhaps the best critique yet:
EUROPE (STARRING GREECE AS PRIMA DONNA)
Once more, the obvious lunacy of “democracy” rears its head in Greece. The anointed people of Greece feel by electing a far left leadership, they can continue their folly for another (and another) cycle. Time to quote a few notable quotes:
“You can ignore reality, but you cannot ignore the consequences of ignoring reality” – Ayn Rand
“Democracy is not freedom. Democracy is two wolves and a lamb voting on what to eat for lunch. Freedom comes from the recognition of certain rights which may not be taken, not even by a 99% vote.” – Marvin Simkin
“Elections belong to the people. It’s their decision. If they decide to turn their back on the fire and burn their behinds, then they will just have to sit on their blisters.” – Abraham Lincoln
“If voting made any difference, they wouldn’t let us do it.” – Mark Twain
“The best argument against democracy is a five minute conversation with the average voter.” – Winston Churchill
“The terrible tyranny of the majority.” – Ray Bradbury
Greece once was a culture of wisdom and knowledge. “Democracy” destroyed Greece as surely as the Romans. Well before the Muslims came along…..
THE MUSLIM WORLD (AKA LOONEY TUNES)
More violence and murder in a number of countries. More terrorism. More Muslim unrest. What do you think is the root cause of Muslim unrest in the world? Is it the dawning of self awareness, realizing you are an immoral blood-thirsty half wit following a brilliant politically fascist formula to destroy knowledge and reason? Is it hemorrhoids? Is it a desire to eradicate your shame as a backward ignorant vicious culture with NO redeeming qualities? Is it a rogue gene? Why speculate? Why not use science to try and comprehend. Dr. Bill Warner is a scientist. He has a rare substance that the Muslim mind cannot fathom: data. Watch as he explains “A 1400 Year Secret”:
For those apologists who always ALWAYS bring up the Crusades as a counter-argument (I’m talking to you, Obambi), Dr. Bill Warner has that covered with “Jihad vs Crusades”:
Joe would like to add and reenforce the Crusades were a defensive response to Muslim terrorism. They were moderately successful when they used Muslim tactics against the Muslims. In addition, bad behavior does NOT condone more bad behavior.
POLITICS, POLITICIANS, WACKJOBBERY, HUMOR, STUPID STUFF
The graphic below seems backward until you realize it is a sign posted at an American funeral home –
Shades of the Emperor’s new clothes –
THE CULTURE (THERE IS ONLY ONE)
PHILOSOPHY, PHILOSOPHERS, SMART THINKING
GUNS, GUNNERS, GUNNERY
THE RELIGION OF PEACE (ON ALL OF US)
The latest idiocy from Obambi essentially dismisses the Islamic jihadism / terrorism / extremism (fill in latest buzz word here……….) by equating these activities with past (way past) Christian activities such as the Crusades and The Inquisition. This may wash with the great unwashed, but Joe and I object. Dr. Andrew Bostom also objects, and elucidates his objections clearly, concisely, and accurately here. More good information at Dr. Bostom’s web site here. Additional Muslim hijinks and aberrations at “The Religion of Peace” and “Jihad Watch“. For the sake of all within earshot (eyeshot) of this web page, Joe and I will reiterate – the Islamic core documents are seriously flawed. Unlike the core documents of Judaism and Christianity, the foundation tenets of Islam condemn unbelievers as unclean unworthy impure and dehumanizes / demonizes them, the philosophy of jihad ensures there will be no reprieve until the entire world is Islam, the hatred of Jews and the willingness to eradicate an entire religious following based on their shared identity – other religions DO NOT incorporate these flawed concepts in their basic beliefs. Joe and I do not choose religion. A vile pastime. But if you absolutely must, why not pick one that professes to run on the energy of love vs hatred?
Thomas Sowell is a favorite of Joe and I. He has the pulpit today to discuss “The Reality of Multiculturalism”:
Multiculturalism is a subset of “The Culture”. I.e. pockets of ethnicity or geographic area or communal focus can be so radically alien to one another that only a common foundation of moral behavior / ethical similarity will increase the probability of “successful” multicultural interaction. Joe and I are fond of ethnic food from some areas. Not much of the music. Very little of the morals.
More on his excellent book “Intellectuals and Race”:
An excellent book, as are all the works of Thomas Sowell we have read. Eminently easy to read, easy to understand – even when the concepts are topsy-turvy to your views.
WEATHER (OR NOT)
This week was a continuation of cloudy, windless, extremely humid grey gray days. Only on Saturday did the sun break through, and again on Sunday. Finally some relief from S.A.D. and relief from more rain more snow more cold. However, the good times they are gone and it’s time for movin’ on…..
Joe (Wet Foot) Mekanic
p.s. Ramirez for any weather –