Posted by: GeekHiker | January 24, 2008

On Water Heaters, Bad Drivers And Stormy Beaches

So I finally have a new water heater.

Unfortunately my, er, thrifty landlord went the same route as his predecessor: copper connected directly to galvanized, not strapped properly, no drip pan.

Which means that in a few years time, and who knows whether or not I’ll be here by then, the whole thing will have to be done all over again.

Even better: he didn’t want to pay the disposal fee to have the plumber haul the old one away, so it currently is sitting in front of the house in the rain and wind.

I’m thinking I should put it up on concrete blocks. I don’t have an old junker car to put up on concrete blocks in the front yard to complete the trailer-trash look, so the old water heater will have to do.

Whatever. Not my place, so why should I worry, right?

Still makes me wish I could afford a place of my own someday (not bloody likely in the LA housing market). If there was one thing that my Dad taught me growing up it’s that it’s better to pay the extra money up front so there aren’t any problems down the line.

Of course, neither my Dad nor I own several houses like my landlord does, so who knows who’s got the right game plan.

For the last several days it’s been raining here in LA, off and on. Luckily, it doesn’t seem to have brought my mood down at all, at least not yet. Sure, there are other stressors at the moment (the job mystery tension, the heater debacle), but looking outside as the rain is falling and the clouds move through is actually helpful.

I think a big part of that is the variety of these systems: periods of dark, periods of light, the occasional hole of blue sky and bright sunlight. Sometimes there are black clouds overhead, sometimes white small wispy ones; occasionally the low clouds will break apart and you’ll see the sun dramatically lighting a tall thunderhead.

It changes all day, and that’s fantastic. Makes all the difference in the world to me. You know, spice of life and all that.

And after a few days of this, about 40% of LA drivers seem to have actually figured out how to drive in the rain. The remainder is split into two groups:

  • Oh. My. God. Water. Is. Falling. From. The. Sky. I-must-drive-at-a-very-cautious-5-mph-on-the-freeway. OhMyGod OhMyGod OhMyGod


  • Rain? Fuck it. I’m still doing 90.

So what did I do after the heater was installed and the rain clouds were moving through? I hopped on said freeway and drove at a very reasonable speed down to the beach:

Stormy Sunset 1

Sun setting through storm clouds

Stormy Sunset 2

Lone gull on the beach

Stormy Sunset 4

Creek draining into a stormy sea

Stormy Sunset 3

Patterns in the sand

Sadly, a number of the shots didn’t turn out. I think that I’ll be needing a new camera soon. Heh. One more thing to add to the list…



  1. Great pics GH! Even though I really like the sunset/beach ones, I like the sand one alot. It’s been rain for you, snow for me. This is the first time I’ve seen chains or snow tires required in Carson Valley. Of course, my drive to work was lengthened since everyone was driving 40 mph up 395. Argh!

  2. Wow! I want to take pictures like you some day. Totally awesome. I have taken similar beach/sun reflection pictures but they are half as good as these.

  3. If the water heater stays there for a long time you might want to think about knocking out a tooth and starting to chew tobaccy…

    Patterns in the sand is fantastic!

  4. Beautiful shots, I love the lone gull one. I have heard of the rain your getting on the news and thought of you. Last time we took our wee one out hiking it poured the whole time. She didn’t care. Love that.

  5. Love the pictures! they’re all very beautiful.

    I’ll take rain coming down really hard rather than light rain because the latter mixes with the car oil in the streets and things can get VERY slippery which a huge pain in the butt.

  6. I especially liked the depictions of drivers. I had a good laugh reading them.

  7. I love it!

    Hopefully you won’t be around then. Who needs a landlord that’s that cheap?

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