So the boiler started to play up Friday morning. It was igniting with a bang, vibrating, cutting out, igniting with a bang, vibrating, cutting out and so on and so on for twenty minutes before I switched the thing off.
The boiler is in a cupboard in our bedroom. With the noise it was making first thing in the morning, I thought I was being woken up by some Dub-Step.
Luckily, our landlord is great. We are very lucky to have him. Not only our landlord he’s one of my best friends. He jumped on the case straight away and booked a reputable household name to send a gas engineer out to us.
So on Saturday, the boiler man came round. Would you believe it, the fault wouldn’t show itself. It was working perfectly. So he had to give it a thorough testing and hope that whatever he tweaked fixed the problem.
Now, I’m all for friendly chatter with an engineer. It’s better than having a miserable git popping round. I always give them a cup of tea or coffee. I even offer them a biscuit. After all, you hear horror stories of tradesmen doing things behind customers who don’t treat them with respect. I don’t want anyone going through our underwear drawers! When I say our’s I’d like to point out that I mean my drawer and Mrs Grump’s draw respectively. We do not share underwear drawers. No cross contamination! Getting dressed in the dark would be a nasty accident waiting to happen. For me!
He was only here for about an hour but some how, I have managed to retain a lot of information about him. Information that I didn’t care to know. I didn’t interview him. I’m not Oprah! He volunteered this information to me. I feel he crossed the boundaries of pleasant chit chat normally offered to people who pop in to do work in your home.
This briefly covers what I learnt from this gas engineer. All of it, is true! Well true in a sense of this is what he told me. Whether it is fact or not, I will never know.
1) He hates these chargeable jobs when he can’t find the faults.
2) They charge £69 call out and £90 an hour.
3) He was saying to the last customer how much he was dreading this job.
4) He currently weighs 19 stone and want’s to lose weight.
5) He’s just spent £700 on a mountain bike to get fit. If you’re going to do it, you may as well buy the proper gear.
6) He’ll probably ride his mountain bike along the canals. (Hmm a nice flat run. That’s a sure fire way to burn calories on a bike that is predominantly built to climb mountains!) This was later contradicted when he said he wouldn’t ride his bike along the canals because there are some rough people around who would probably steal it from him.
7) He’s 47.
8) His other half is 45.
9) He wouldn’t like children.
10) Is other half would like children.
11) If they did have children, expensive child care costs wouldn’t be a problem. You see, he and his other half earn £200,000 between them every year. (Surely he could afford a home gym then? Or liposuction.)
12) They’ve been together for 3 years.
13) They have a house together. An end terrace.
14) He would never rent.
15) His other half was renting.
16) He calculated she had spent £20,000 on rent.
17) She has issues with her parents.
18) They now live together in Willenhall. (Mmm nice! About as pleasant as finding a shit in your microwave.)
19) He used to work on building sites.
20) He would never buy a new build house. They just don’t have the build quality.
21) The street they live in has a rough family in it who have broken in to everyone’s house except his. The parents of the family also live in the same street. A young couple have just bought the house next door to that family. He felt sorry for them. (Better keep an eye on that expensive bike then! Also, if I earned that kind of money, I wouldn’t live in an end terrace with a rough criminal family living in close proximity!)
22) He and his better half met on match.com. (How times change. It was once a little embarrassing to say you were internet dating. It’s now accepted as the norm and you can divulge all to complete strangers. He then asked if me and Mrs Grump met on the internet. We didn’t, we met the traditional way. We kept it retro. Our eyes met over a photocopier. I made a cheap and crass innuendo based joke. I noticed her beautiful green eyes, shiny and silky long brown hair and a fantastic green cardigan! BOOM! I can appreciate knitwear!)
23) He was only 14 stone when he joined that. (She’s a feeder!)
24) She was date number 13 or 15, he thinks. (I tried Match.com once. Nothing. Nada. Zip. Perhaps it was my sexual energy oozing out of the screen. It can be intimidating. Just realised I’ve divulged my internet dating to you.. a stranger. Oh well it’s acceptable!)
25) Date number 3 was a gorgeous business woman with a flash car. On their second date she said she was cold and asked if they could sit in his car. She then pounced on him. This happened again on the third date. However, he was put off by this so he had to give her the elbow. (Too right! What single man, in their right mind would want a stunning, highly successful woman, with a flash car you could possibly drive, to throw herself at them? Err no thanks!!)
26) Date number 5 was a red head. A size 6! On their second date on a park bench, she turned to him and asked, “How many children do you want then?” He gave her the elbow.
27) Date number 8 was a woman who said she was early 40’s but actually turned out to be early 50’s. She told him that it was a ten year old photo that she was using. She hadn’t aged well. She looked like she was in her 60’s. He didn’t see her again. (Technically, he should have reported the bitch to trading standards. Completely false advertising! I would have. Reported her that is!)
28) He once went to a job, fixing the boiler and felt like he recognised the lady owner somewhere but couldn’t place her. Then she recognised him from Match.com. (It’s great to be recognised isn’t it? “Hey are you that guy?” But if only it was for something like being a hero, a rock star or a film star. I’ve never heard of anyone being famous for being on an internet dating site before.)
29) He once worked in a house with indian occupants who had a sticky carpet. He thought it must be a religious thing. (I wasn’t sure if he was about to be racist so I scurried him out of the door and changed the subject.)
30) He’s off work now until the middle of this week. A long weekend. He might go cycling along the canals. (No he won’t!)
And there you have it. I not only got the boiler looked at and hopefully repaired, I also had a full insight into the life of this clinically obese, high tax paying, highly attractive gas fitter with a very humble abode. Now thanks to me, you know as much about him as I do.