the case of the broken window

Thursday afternoon our propane fireplace was finally fixed.

Sound the trumpets.

If you remember, it stopped working right after Christmas.  It heats 3/4 of the upstairs.  We moved down to the basement and waited 25 days for the repairman from the local fireplace store and repair shop to fix it.  And then the next day, when I turned on the thermostat, there was a delay between flipping the switch and the fire lighting, resulting in a very loud bang, high flames and the alarming earthquake-like rattling of the glass and frame.

I googled the problem and diagnosed “delayed ignition”.  I would not be able to fix it myself with the help of a Youtube video.


I timed the stove.  A five second delay meant a lovely little “poof” noise. Twelve seconds caused a significant but not scary “bang”.  The sixteen-second range was the bad one and happened at least once a day.  We called the stove repair shop and were told they would call us back.  They didn’t.

I should have raised a fit, but there are a number of people who don’t call me back.  There’s a contractor in Austin.  And one here in Rhode Island.  And an electrician.  No, two electricians.  And the guy who is going to take down the rest of The Tree.

BUT Thursday I’d had enough.  I was pissed at the world and about to kick ass (I’d successfully taken on the Austin contractor on Wednesday and was still basking in the glow of accomplishment).  I was prepared to explain that I was sending them a registered, certified letter so that if the stove exploded and took out part of the living room I could sue them.  I dialed the number and put steel in my voice.

Sadly, I didn’t get to say the letter part, but I said a few other things and a very experienced repairman showed up an hour later.  The previous repairman (who was new) had made some serious mistakes when installing new parts.

But that’s not the point of this blog.  Really, you ask?  Then what are you babbling about???

After the stove was fixed I went into the upstairs bathroom, a room that had been closed off since the stove broke, and decided to open the window and air it out (it was 52 degrees and sunny).  I raised the blinds and saw what looked like sugar on the sill.

It was glass.  The top portion of the window was cracked.  All over.  There was a screen on the outside and no dents or holes in it.

What looks like tree branches are actually cracks.

I went outside, but there wasn’t a bit of glass on the gravel.  No obvious rock, dead bird or tree branch.  Conclusion:  the window had imploded all by itself.


Did this have something to do with the tree falling and shaking the house?  I would have to call the insurance adjustor and give him a heads up.  He always answers my calls, which is refreshing.

Last night Banjo Man came upstairs for dinner (chicken noodle soup and corn bread) and said, “You have to see this.”

This was not said in a, “There’s a Pekingese puppy who needs a home at the back door” tone.

I braced myself for trouble.

Sure enough, another window had cracked.  Facing south, not north.  Different window, installed at a later date than the bathroom window, but the same style of cracks.

What fresh hell is this????

We will be inspecting all of our windows on a daily basis from now on.  And we’re putting plywood over the broken ones until Spring.

If you have any ideas or suggestions or experience with shattered glass, please please please let me know.


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2 Responses to the case of the broken window

  1. Marge Fridrich says:

    !!!!!!!!!!!! Unbelievable! Except I believe you.
    Why would that happen now?
    You now have permission to join Phyllis’s and my
    “ALWAYS SOMETHING” club. You had already had been accepted but I didn’t get around to notifying you due to the ALWAYS SOMETHINGS.
    So sorry. Hope no more windows go. Who can tell you why?


  2. Marge Fridrich says:

    I may not have told you about my letter sent individually to all eleven of the doctors in Ken’sSURGEON’s urology practice. After explaining my disgust, I concluded by saying “If I were new to Omaha and looking for your services, I would not call your office. “

    Also in repeated conversations to Ken’s wound/stoma office, regarding enough supplies to cover the mess caused by the huge hernia 8-9” wide and 8-9” across which forces the skin to break into sores, said very firmly in 2 conversations, you are not listening to what I am saying!!!! And sent PICTURES!!!!

    DON’T MESS WiTh US!!!!!

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