lmorchard: (Kitties #1)
[personal profile] lmorchard
Warning: The story in this entry is disgusting. It is gross, maybe offensively so. You don't have to read this.

But... If you happen to have access to time travel or some sort of transtemporal telepathy, could you please deliver the following message to me, about 3 or 4 hours ago:
The instructions on the "flushable" kitty litter explicitly warn you not to try flushing an entire litter box of it at once. They mean it. It's not a joke or one of those stupid precautions like "Do not use hair dryer while sleeping". Not even a little.

So, umm... if you still remember to go change the litter, don't even think of not following the directions.

Okay, so I'm sitting here watching Tenchi Muyo, when between episodes, I get up to use the facilities. Well, the kitties' facilities are in there too and I realize that it needs to be attended to. (That is to say, the old litterbox was causing the paint to peel.)

SO... I use this non-clay clumping and flushable litter made from corn cobs. I start scooping and sifting, and realize that I've let it go too long for that and might as well toss the whole batch and refill the box. Normally, I do this every night or so, so the box stays fairly non-offensive and I end up with only a little bit of litter to flush. But, I forge on ahead and start dumping the whole litter box into the toilet, pumping the flush handle all the way.

At first, no problem. The water is carrying away the "material" faster than I pour it in. So, I get impatient and start pouring faster. Still no problem-- er... wait... problem. Suddenly, it's looking like the water's rising. Well, okay, I'll just stop and let it drain, I think.

Erm. It isn't draining. I realize that in one second, the toilet's about to overflow. I stopped pumping the flush handle, but for some reason the water is still flowing in.

Now, normally, I don't tend to freeze up in a tense situation like this. Normally. But, the sheer surreality of the toilet's pending overflow of water and kitty litter much has me transfixed. I don't know what to do. It overflows. It rises up out of the bowl and onto the floor in a hellish waterfall of sludge.

I remember thinking... Fuck. That's going to be a mess when it stops. But it doesn't stop. It just keeps overflowing. Now, mind you, all this took place in about 10 seconds after I realized the toilet was clogged. The water just keeps coming, and I just keep staring at the horrific torrent pouring from the porcelain.

Finally, I snap out of it as I realize that the entire bathroom floor is submerged in about 1/4-1/2" of muck. I tear off the top of the toilet and grunt vaguely at it. By the time the flood has crested over the tops of my toes, I realize that this doohickey here needs to be lifted like so, and this other one doodad has to be pushed into a hole, and the water stops.

As soon as the water stops, I realize that the flood is starting to seep out under the bathroom door and into the carpet in the hall. I pull open the door, grab an armfull of dirty towels, and throw them down in a makeshift dam outside the door. At this point, both kitties are insanely curious as to what is happening, and I see Nana getting coiled to jump over the new towel-dam, and Puck is tenatively raising a paw to step into the swamp. I swoop down on both of them, and gently toss them around thecorner into my room, closing the door after them.

Now it's quiet, save for Puck's pitiful kitty crying from my room, and it sinks in: The bathroom floor is covered in almost an inch of toilet water mixed with nearly the entire contents of a well used litterbox. I don't think I need to go into graphic description, but there are various unspeakable objects floating around and bumping into my feet. Not to mention the corncob-based slurry squishing between my toes.

This isn't happening, I think. It just isn't. This kind of gratuitously stupid thing just never happens to me. Then I think... Umm, it happened, and I'm a fucking rocket scientist.

Well, for the next 2 hours, I start clean up efforts. I can almost sympathize with the environmental clean up crews who scoured the Alaskan coast after the Exxon Valdez spilled it's cargo into the sea. Unfortunately, those crews were much better prepared than I.

Things that I don't have: A mop or squeegee. A bucket. A plunger. Floor cleaner

Things I do have: A broom and dust pan. A scouring sponge. A garbage can. An extra long toilet brush. Ajax scouring powder with bleach.

I manage to scoup up all the major water from the floor in about 30 minutes with the dust pan. One slosh at a time into the garbage can. I then use another bag of clean kitty litter to soak up the rest of the moisture on the floor, and carefully, carefully work that down the toilet.

Then, I nuke the place with Ajax. Sprinkle it everywhere. Hell, I was an Ajax tinkerbell, spewing it in all directions like it was Faerie Dust. I have a cigarette. I come back and start scrubbing every surface in the bathroom with my trusty palm-sized scouring sponge. I rinse the entire bathroom several times with a few wet towels, then try to dry things off a bit with one of my last clean towels.

Finally, the place reeks of clean, and there's nary a speck of litter left anywhere. I'm a mess, and Puck is really worried that I've abandoned him in my room. Before I let the kitties back out, I collect all the soiled bath mats and towels into a garbage bag. Maybe I can reclaim these things in the laundry tomorrow.

So, 30 seconds of idiocy turned into about 2 1/2 hours of even more idiotic work. Now I'm worried that I might get sick from having been wading in kitty waste, and I'm worried that I might not have rinsed the bleach cleaner well enough, and I hope to God that the kitties don't find any bleach-enriched puddles to lap from.

I take a shower, sit back on the couch, and watch the rest of Tenchi as I write this.



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May 2009

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