Date:         Fri, 7 Feb 1997 12:56:14 EST
From: gilbertsmith <>
Subject:      WHTMWICHFMB 1
To: Multiple recipients of list WORDS-L <>


1)  Before leaving, I had made arrangements with the little girl next
door to feed Ruby daily, bring in the mail and newspaper, and check
the water level in the furnace, so that all the pipes in my house
would not freeze if it got cold.  I promised her $20 for these
chores, which she thought was a very big pile of money.

2)  I knew that the MEotM would be in town part of that time, and
once again was a bit concerned that I had not changed the locks.  But
then I knew also that Karla, my step-daughter, and Nick, my step-son,
would be here and might want to come in.  So no problem.

3)  So, I get home at 12 midnight Friday night, the weather is
terrifically warm, as it has been almost the entire time I've been
gone.  Ruby is fine and fat and happy....  There is a note from Karla
lamenting having missed me....  and the house is very chilly.

4)  So, I go to the basement, check the water level, which turns out
to be ok, then check the pilot light, which is out.  Hmmmmm....  I
check the water heater, and that pilot light is out....  Hmmmmm....
I try to relight each and get no response....  Hmmmmm....

5)  No gas.  Hmmm.....  What to do now?  Very glad it is not
freezing, very lucky indeed.  Hmmm....


    6)  So I go out and check the gas meter and it has been *turned*
*off*, like with a wrench, but there is no seal on it, none of those
little thingies they put on it to be sure the customer does not
tamper with it.  So I just get out my big wrench and turn it back on.
    7)  Now I have trouble getting the pilot light to the furnace
lit.  I work on it for hours, finally it lights.  The water heater
works fine, but furnace... no.  Lucky it is 60 degrees.
    8) Next morning I go across the street to the gas company to
inquire about why the gas was turned off.  Yes, of course.  I had
never switched the account to my name and the MEotM was pissed
because she got several bills, even though the bills are drafted on
my bank account automatically.  And yes she was in town while I was
    9)  And yes, she requested that her name be taken off the
account, which they did by closing the account and turning off my
gas.  Whether she knew that they would turn off the gas, I dont know.
    10)  Then the best part.  The $400 remaining in the account from
the equal pay plan must be refunded to the account owner.  That means
not me, but the....  I insist that it is my money.  The nice lady
takes me to the next office to talk to her supervisor.  I realize
that this is a done deal.  The account is in *her* name, so she gets
my money.
    11)  Ah, but I talk and talk and talk and swear I have been
paying this bill for two years out of an account with only my name on
it, and she says, to my amazement:  "Do you have a check from this
account to show me that what you say is true?"  I show her the check
and she says yes she will transfer the money to my new account.  I'm
sure that's illegal, but she did it anyway.
    12)  I breathe a sigh of relief, thinking I have gotten through
another <incident>...  but I do not suspect what will happen the next
day....   it's not over yet.
    13)  The next day, I get a big fat envelope from my recent mate,
stuffed with the same bills and a note, once again, *instructing* me
to do the right thing and pay the bills.  I get very anxious, so I go
out the back door to go to the bar across the back street and in the
back street, I find a big orange sticker on the *car*....  the white
El Dorado still registered in my name.  They will now tow it away and
charge me for the towing and the storage.  Nice.  And then, a letter
from the bank informing me that they will not pay the insurance bill
they just got for my house because they have already paid one for
this time period. What???
    14)  The insurance company reports that, since I changed the
policy to my own number, they are sending a refund for the unused
part of the premium.   In the form of a check, made out to the bank
and to me and.....  yes.... and to her, since she is the policy owner.
Now all I have to do is get her to endorse the check.  Yeah, right.
I have a beer, or maybe two....   and check out the bar for the next
ex-Mrs. ggs.  Just in case I need one.