by MORT BRYER
This happened, I estimate, about twenty years ago, plus. My point of reference is based on the year I moved from the Garden State, (NJ) to lovely, bucolic Connecticut, 1983, and before the big ball knocked down that noble, towering edifice on West 46th Street in early 1988, a period a.k.a. as “after the sale”.
My usual routine was to split from the office about 6 p.m.for Grand Central, head immediately for the choo choo bar car,put some bread down for a can of Foster’s Beer (from Ozland), a large can which lasted me all the way to my stop in Rowayton, Ct. In those ancient times, you could still smoke in the bar car, and it was nice to be able to haul out a decent stogie and puff away while slurping my brew. A swift drive home (what, me walk, no way!) to my chateau and ready to do the trencherman bit.
After my wife filled me in, re the mail, usually assorted bills, I sat down to satisfy the inner man. While munching,the phone rang. I picked up and it was Norma, in a state of panic. She said – and I remember this with total clarity – “Mort, there is a leak in the basement and there is a flood! What do I do”? After reflecting on this bit of info for a few seconds, I came up with what I thought was a brilliant piece of advice: “Norma, call a plumber!”
I assume this is what she did and next morning everything was in working order. But I’m still puzzled on why she called me. Don’t blame her for the panic, by the way, since I would have also been tempted to go ape. A leaking basement is not a joke.