Feb 09

The flooding basement

You may remember my posts from last year about my basement. About waking to find almost 3 feet of water lazing about ruining my shit.  Well, a big reason why is that I had put a stack of newspapers over the drain.  Duh. 

We’ve been vigilant, but lacking funds we could only hope not to reproduce last year’s drama.  We know now that the water is coming up through the cracks of the concrete floor, so explain to my why I thought it to be a great idea to put a rug on that same floor during the winter months?  After this morning’s rainfall, I peeked downstairs to see that the cracks were wet, but all was well.  Not too long ago, Adrian asked if the basement was alright. He took a peek to find that it wasn’t.

There was only about 3 inches of water in the deepest parts and thankfully everything had been put up high.  Still, the carpet is wet, as are cords to various small appliances.  I ran to the back to grab a bamboo stick and see what was clogging the drain this time.  One little slip of paper. That’s all. 

So, the water has gone down the drain, the cracks are still swollen and weeping water, but at least we didn’t have to spend 3 days with the sump pump.

Sep 07

Hiding out in my house

They used to come on Tuesday mornings, but now they come on Thursday mid-morning. Who is ‘they’? ‘They’ is the GodSquad. The doorknockers full of pamphlets and the glory of the Lord. In my old place, they couldn’t get into the courtyard. But living in a house with full street access is a different story. The first time I ran into the, I tried my old, ‘No hablo engles’. Ha. They’re all Latino, with one Chinese. The 2nd time, I got lucky. The kid didn’t speak English and only had Spanish pamphlets. Once I tried to avoid them by going into the backyard. Unfortunately, the kids were playing by the gate and the lady sat there talking to them asking them to go get mommy. Ugh. The last time I got caught up with them, I was sitting on my porch reading the paper. Three of them descended on me. I let them talk and they offered me the pages. I woefully and loudly said, “I can’t read!”. They turned red, apologized and walked down the steps. They got halfway past the neighbor’s house before they realized I was reading the newspaper. Suckas.

I don’t know what denomination these people are, but the few pamphlets I got from them are scary. One had a picture of a bloody Christ on it the cover and the teaser on front was something like, ‘Armageddon is Nearing! Are you Ready for BATTLE!!!’ (there really weren’t any question marks which is why I remember it). The lady gave my little girl a pamphlet that was “for kids”. Thank goodness the girl can’t read. I flipped it opened and it was saying stuff like, “If your mommy and daddy don’t take you to church, they’ll be in hell for all eternity and you’ll never see them in heaven.” And you don’t get a pony! snort

All of this is just a long way of saying I need a fence.

Sep 07

And another thing

Mission Millworks steals.

Back in March, I had one of my window’s replaced. There was an A/C unit in the window. The guys asked me what to do with it. I told them I had promised it to someone else if I don’t decide to keep it myself. I asked them to put it in the garage or at least in the backyard. I was under the impression they had done so. A couple of weeks later, I was cleaning out the garage and found the A/C unit wasn’t there. I called Mission Millworks to make sure they put it in the garage. 4 days later, I got a voicemail, “The window installers took the unit. Thank you.” That was it!

The stolen A/C unit

I called back, and asked if I could have the unit back. The lady said, “Let me look into it.” I called back in May to see where my A/C was or if they’d reimburse me for it. I got a man on the phone who said that there was no unit and that I should stop calling. I called back everyday for 3 weeks. Usually, I’d get hung up on, but sometimes I’d get the lady who’d say that she’ll look into it.

Needless to say, we really needed that A/C unit the past week. It’s such a shame that not only do they allow their workers to steal, but they don’t even take any responsibility for it. Consider that I need to replace 7 more windows and plan on doing it before November, they’ve definitely lost my business. After all, who knows what else they’ll steal?

Sep 07

While I’m at it…

big ol' hole

This photo was taken on Feb. 8th, 2007. I hired Citywide Electrics to come and move the old plug meter box to the outside, and rewire some stuff. My estimate was $4200. When the work was supposedly finished, they said it was going to cost $5200 unless, we could find the old estimate. I was in Corona that day and hubby couldn’t find it, so we paid out an extra $1K.

In March, we found out that the wiring we paid for was never installed. When we had our lights in our living room, we hadn’t seen or heard anything from Citywide in almost a month. I had been calling because the city inspector wouldn’t sign off on the meter since it wasn’t where he said to put it. Okay, so when the electrician went to put the meter on the outside, I showed him the inspector’s sketch and said, “Well, at least it’ll be on the side of the house, so that I we cans still put the door from our bedroom to the backyard.” He goes to work, and I went outside later, to see him knocking tiles off the roof and cutting a hole in the roofline. He said, “I’m putting it here because it’s even between the side of the house and the window.” I said, “But what about my door?” He replied, “Oh, well, maybe later you can put this someplace else.” WTF?

Anyway, in March we had Luis come out to install the lights the electrician was supposed to have installed. He was up in the attic, trying to hook up the dining room light for us. He came back down, “I thought Lawrence was going to replace that wire up there?” I nodded, “He said he was. I saw him go up there with wire. Why?” “Well, the wire up there is all the old cloth covered stuff. The wires above the dining room light were all balled up and put together with masking tape. The stuff was smoking! That’s why I was up there so long. I was untangling all those wires. I thought Lawrence put in new stuff.” Sigh.

I immediately called Citywide, because 1) that’s unacceptable and 2) we were still using temporary power. I didn’t get a call back. Oh…the hole. I asked if Lawrence if he was going to repair the hole. He said not unless he was given permission, but usually he doesn’t fix holes. WHAT? When I had called Citywide before the estimate, my number 2 question was “Do you repair damage to walls or whatever if there are holes left?” and they said, Yes. So, there’s this big ol’ hole in my laundry room.

This photo was taken today:
big ol' hole, still there 7 mos later

So, for the last 6 months, every other week, I call and tell them the situation. I’ve only received one call back and that was in May. I was told that Lawrence broke his back, but he’ll come back out the next day and check on it. I explained to them that I will not be paying for anything at all, since I was charged for miles of copper wire that was never installed in my home. In the meantime, I’m unable to find any electrician willing to touch it. I’m still on temporary power, though now LADWP is charging me for it:


The meter reader from LADWP is just astounded that no one has even tried to come out to fix it. The thing that sucks is that I found them via Angie’s List. I don’t even know if I can complain to the List because the company hasn’t done anything to get back into contact with me!

So frustrating.

Sep 07

La Canada Rustic Stone

Disappointed. As you know, we’ve been working on the backyard. This wasn’t just putting in plants, we also bought about $3000 worth of stone, sand, pebble and rocks from La Canada Rustic Stone. Our last delivery was in June. That was our 3rd or 4th delivery and we not only do we still need more rock for the backyard, but we also need about another $3K – $5K worth of tile, sand and rock for the front yard.

At our last delivery, the delivery guy broke our gate. I mean he crushed it so bad that we couldn’t even shut it. We went from having a gate that shut closed with the slightest breeze to having a gate where it wouldn’t even connect. One side was about 2″ lower than the rest. About 5 min. after the delivery guy gave me my receipt, I noticed this and immediately called the offices. They finally called me back about 45 min. later. I spoke with Dana. Dana who says, “Well, I have the delivery guy go back and look at the gate he allegedly broke.” There was no apology or anything. I was immediately accused of lying.

Nice customer service.

The guy came back and banged on the gate for 45 min. and declared it fixed. Well, it’s not fixed. In order to shut the gate completely, you have to lift it up from the bottom and force it. Locking it is a chore because there’s a half inch difference on that side of the gate. I called Dana back while the guy was still here and couple of days later, she got back to me. 15 minutes and 6 more “allegedly-s” later, she said that she’ll have someone come look at the gate. That was on June 12th. In the last (almost) 3 months, we have not heard one word from her alleged gate repairman and to make it worse, not one of my phone calls or letters have been answered.

What makes it so sad is that we prefer to get the rock from them because they’re closer; reducing how much travel time there is between our house and their yard, therefore reducing pollution. They’re not the cheapest place, nor do they have the best selection. But because of bad customer service, no because of non-existent customer service, we’ll be buying our stone from a place that’s 6 miles further, cheaper and with a larger selection. Hopefully, they’ll know what customer service is.