Widowmaker: The Horror

Some people have bad hair days. Thus far, I’ve been having a bad hair lifetime. We’ve been at odds for over thirty years now, with my hair being full of cow licks yet devoid of body, and me punishing it for just being itself. It has survived being permed, colored, and put into ponytails of all sizes and configurations. As my mom would say, “fried, dyed, up and tied.” My hair even survived middle school mall bangs. That the picture is from DANCE team, not cheerleading. I will admit to being the co-captain but will point out that I wanted to dance to Prince and not Vanilla Ice. We spelled out “ICE” with our pompoms at the end. Shoot me in the face.

Anyway, I can understand why my hair would hold a little ill will toward me. It has devoted its life to burning out vacuum cleaners and clogging shower drains, when not sticking to the insides of my shirts and tickling me. When shopping for vacuums, I refer to my hair as The Widowmaker. Last night, it went too far.

I had already cleaned out the part of the shower drain that I could reach, and the shower was still draining slowly. I emptied a bottle of Drano into it with no luck. In a moment of insanity, I reached out of the shower and grabbed the plunger. This accomplished nothing, aside from shoving the clog further into the pipes and filling the water pooled at my ankles with chunks of tried rubber and microscopic, mentally horrifying fecal matter.

“What have I done? I might as well have just stuck my feet in the toilet.” HORROR.

So, I stepped out of the shower (washing the lower half of my legs AFTER stepping out of The Horror, as if that would help) and went to Home Depot to seek out Red Devil Lye.

I strongly suspect that Red Devil is illegal or out of business, because it’s hard to find now. Instead, I got Drano “Kitchen Crystals,” which I took for a good substitute because they come in a metal can which yells “DO NOT INDUCE VOMITING.” A good life strategy in general, especially if you’ve just swallowed lye and value your esophagus.

When the kitchen crystals didn’t work after I poured them into the regular drain, I took off the cover to the overflow trap and poured some in there. Toxic vapors? Yes. Draining tub? No.

So, I went to the ghetto hardware store close to my house and got a hand crank snake, per Google. While this gave me a good workout and allowed me to stick my hands into water swimming with lye, it only produced one small bit of hair. One pipe hasn’t produced this much frustration since Baby Jessica. Before I called a plumber, I’d try one more thing. Liquid Fire.

This was what the salesman tried to sell me the FIRST time I went to the hardware store, but I wanted to try the snake because the bottle of Liquid Fire kind of scared the shit out of me. You can pour an entire can of Kitchen Crystals in a tub and (apparently) wade around in it. The Liquid Fire bottle pretty much said that my legs would be reduced to oozing stumps the very millisecond they came in contact with Liquid Fire. The warnings read like the Happy Fun Ball commercial from SNL. DO NOT LOOK DIRECTLY AT LIQUID FIRE. DO NOT TAUNT LIQUID FIRE.

It took two rounds, but the Liquid Fire eventually cleared the clog. I thoroughly cleaned the shower, giving it an extra spray of bleach, just to ease my mind about the whole “might as well stick my foot in the toilet” thing.

Side bar: Liquid Fire AND Kitchen Crystals smell like perm solution, which should definitely make you never want to get a perm. If nothing else, perming will make your hair angry. You do NOT want to make your hair angry. Trust me on this.

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