It’s easy to have a dry sense of humor when the ceiling doesn’t leak anymore. That’s what our favorite humor columnist for the Hearst Connecticut Media Group and the Tribune News Service of Chicago, Jerry Zezima, tells us anyway. That’s why he now says proudly, this old goof has a new roof.
For years, people have said I am all wet, even during droughts, so I wasn’t surprised that until recently, my house was all wet, too.
That’s because there was water, water everywhere and, since I ran out of beer, not a drop to drink.
Water was coming in through the ceiling, through a skylight and even through a kitchen cabinet. It was enough to make me go through the roof, which not only would have made the situation worse but might have given me a concussion, not that anyone could tell the difference.
So my wife, Sue, told me to call the insurance company.
“I hope we have an umbrella policy,” I said.
Sue ignored the remark and said, “I want to see if the roof is covered.”
“It’s not covered,” I replied. “That’s why we have a water problem.”
“You’re going to have a problem,” said Sue, who specifically mentioned how she could benefit from cashing in my life insurance policy.
Two days later, an adjuster named Doug came over to survey the damage.
“Do you think the value of the house would increase if I had an indoor swimming pool?” I asked.
“It might,” Doug said. “You could bring in some sand and beach chairs.”
“Would the insurance company pay for it?” I wondered.
“No,” said Doug, adding that he has seen far worse situations. “In one case, the entire first floor was under water,” he recalled. “Cars have driven through houses. We’ve covered the damage. There was even a lady who spilled bleach on her carpet. We replaced it.”
“If I want a new carpet,” I said, “should I spill bleach on it?”
“You can try,” said Doug, “but I won’t be your adjuster.”
He did, however, send us a check and suggested we call a general contractor.
Anthony Amini, owner of Performance Roofing and Siding of Long Island, New York, was the man for the job.
“He was a great war hero,” I told Anthony. “Killed at Gettysburg.”
“Who?” Anthony asked.
“General Contractor,” I said.
Anthony saluted and sized up the situation.
“Your roof is old,” he said. “It’s outdated and worn out.”
“Sounds like me,” I responded.
“My roof was the same,” said Anthony. “I had a leaky skylight, just like you. When it rained, I had to put a bucket underneath it.”
“My wife wanted me to put a new roof on my bucket list,” I said.
“So did mine,” Anthony told me. “She said, ‘You do two or three roofs a week. Do this one.’ I said, ‘OK, babe.’ Now we have a brand-new roof.”
“I bet you know a good roofer,” I said.
“I do,” said Anthony. “He’s a very nice guy and a very handsome guy. And he did a great job.”
It was the same kind of job he did on our roof. And, with a hardworking crew of eight guys, it was done in one day.
“You had some issues in the valleys,” Anthony told me.
“How about the mountains?” I asked.
“There, too,” he said, adding that he gave me new boots.
“I could have worn them when the ceiling leaked,” I said.
“You also got new gooseneck vents,” Anthony said. “One of the old ones had a hairline fracture.”
“I should have called a doctor,” I said.
“It wouldn’t have been covered under your medical plan,” said Anthony, who also put in new ice and water shields and replaced the skylight in the family room.
“Things are looking up,” I said, looking up at my beautiful new roof.
“It’s guaranteed for 20 years,” Anthony said, “but it should last for 30 or 40.”
“I probably won’t be around then,” I said. “But since the ceiling doesn’t leak anymore, I can kick the bucket now.”
Copyright 2020 by Jerry Zezima
Jerry’s latest book is, “Nini and Poppie’s Excellent Adventures: Grandkids, Wine Clubs, and Other Ways to Keep Having Fun”