Last night I set the oven to preheat and went upstairs to take a shower (my second of the day, thanks to East Cost humidity) while Joel finished washing off our bikes out on the back deck. When I came back downstairs I heard the oven beep and assumed the pizza was ready. But, no. The oven was just done preheating. It had taken nearly 40 minutes for it to heat up to 400 degrees.
I put the pizza in and went about the business of inspecting the tile floor for any stray ants when I smelled gas. I opened the oven and REALLY smelled gas. And then I did nothing for a few minutes. I don't know if this is a universal thing, but my first instinct when presented with really bad homeowner stuff is to pretend it's not happening. Water coming out of the wall? Nah, I must be hallucinating. Bird chirping coming from the chimney? Must be the neighbor's TV. Carpet all wet in the litterbox room? Must be cat pee. That, my friends, is when you know things are bad, cat pee is the best case scenario.
I eventually came to my senses and turned the oven off. We cooked the pizza on the grill (can't believe THAT worked), ate it, and then were suddenly overcome with the urge to go to Home Depot and buy that carbon monoxide detector I've been meaning to purchase and install for, oh, three years or so. I realize that carbon monoxide and natural gas are not at all the same thing. I just wanted to do something to responsible to counteract the WE'RE GOING TO DIE IN A FIRE panic feeling building up in my gut. Unfortunately, Home Depot had been closed for an hour. Instead we put batteries in the smoke detectors.
I insisted that we sleep with the windows open, just to because of the .001% chance that there was still a teeny invisible leak, slowly filling our house with poisonous gas in order to suffocate us in our sleep. People survived before there was air conditioning, I told Joel as he grumbled something about it being ninety nine degrees outside and our bedroom being on the third floor. Yes, he replied, but they didn't live in asphalt-covered people-filled cities teeming with machines. And a lot of them probably died of heat stroke.
Well, I'm happy to report that we died neither of heat stroke nor gas poisoning last night. We're both alive and the oven will hopefully be repaired tomorrow. And I'll go buy that carbon monoxide detector... later.
In addition to the broken oven, our landline phone stopped working at some point in the past few weeks. We didn't notice for awhile, although the lack of telemarketer calls should have been a hint. The only reason we have that phone line is because it connects our alarm system to the monitoring company. The same alarm system that alerts the fire department if, say, there is a gas leak in the house.
We noticed the absence of a dial tone when our internet mysteriously stopped working last week. We've been using my phone's browser as our home internet since Thursday.
If the Tivo breaks I'm checking into a hotel. Under an assumed name, just to be safe.