Minister's Study

Ministering, writing, and wrestling in a land flowing with sweet tea and deep-fried food

Wednesday, March 01, 2006


October 12th, 2005

"...a chim-sweep's as lucky as lucky can be." Apologies to Mary Poppins, but being a chimney sweep isn't all it's cracked up to be.

Based on the recommendation of our furnace service man, we had a man come look at our chimney. Turns out the thing was completely blocked at the bottom, as far up as he could reach. And according to him, the only way that happens is if there's a problem higher up; based on the stuff at the bottom, he said the terra cotta lining of the chimney had collapsed. He told us not to run the furnace until it was repaired (of course, since the furnace is also our hot water heater, that meant no hot water, too.) Naturally, the repair (replacing the lining on a forty foot chimney) costs a lot.

Our head deacon thinks that the guy may have been giving us a snow job about the seriousness of the problem and the price of the repair. But we needed hot water (and it's starting to get chilly up here.) So he and I started Monday with trowels and plastic garbage bags, shovelling soot and terra cotta out of the base of our chimney. Strangely, none of the chimney work involved dancing on the roof tops and stepping in time. And when we were done, if I'd shaken your hand, good luck wasn't all that would have rubbed off!

P.S. The Yankees lost! The Yankees lost! *Does a surreptitious victory dance, then looks around sheepishly and in fear of life* Does my joy at this make me a vindictive, evil person? Hey, that was a rhetorical question. No answer required. Or desired. *Fades away cheering, "The Yankees lost! The Yankees lost!"*


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