Um… Hello, 911…?

…I think I just killed my husband… with a bathtub…

I came very close to speaking those words several years ago, and yes, you did read that first sentence correctly. ‘With’; not ‘in’. After all, killing one’s husband in a bathtub is practically a cliché, and you know I’d never stoop to that.

When we bought our house, the upstairs bathroom had a ‘cultured marble’ (read ‘concrete finished to look like marble’) jetted tub.  If we didn’t remember to run the jets frequently it spat stinking gouts of slime because there was no way to drain the stagnant water from the lines. It was ugly, as cold as stone (go figure) and poorly insulated on an exterior wall. In winter my ass froze on the bottom of the tub no matter how hot the water was.

It had to go.

Our plumber friend surveyed it and advised, “That thing probably weighs nearly two hundred pounds. Break it up with a sledgehammer and take it out in pieces.” (Gary, if you’re reading this: We should have listened to you.)

We didn’t, of course.

No; the tub was in good shape. Somebody else might be able to use it. It must be salvaged!

We’re both strong, so removing it wasn’t too difficult. We extricated it from the bathroom with a modicum of sweat and profanity and lugged it to the top of the stairs.  There we balanced it precariously overhanging the stairs, and I went down to support it from below while Hubby held it from the landing above.

I eyed the teetering monstrosity looming over me and said, “I think we should wait until after lunch to do this. My blood sugar is low and I don’t know if I can hold this thing.”

And Hubby said, “That’s okay, I’ll take the bottom and you can take the top.”

We swapped positions and I quavered, “I think we might be solving the wrong problem here…”

And we were. Oh, yes, we were.

Have I mentioned that cultured marble is slippery?

As soon as the tub tipped past its centre of balance, it wrenched out of my grasp. I had only enough time to yelp, “I can’t hold it!” before it hurtled down the stairs like a murderous toboggan with Hubby underneath it.

The lower landing sported an oak railing and (luckily) a 90-degree bend in the stairs.

The tub hit the landing and slammed into the railing. The railing let out a hellish crack and tore loose from the wall but miraculously held at a crazy angle, barely preventing the tub from shooting over the edge and plunging through the living room floor below.

Frozen, I gaped down at the scene of the crime: The tub (still in one piece); the broken railing; Hubby squished underneath.

And I thought, “Shit, I just killed my husband with a bathtub.”

I hadn’t, fortunately. He was smart enough to let it carry him down instead of trying to stop it, so he escaped with only a few minor bruises. After I’d eaten some lunch and stopped shaking, we anticlimactically carried it down the remaining stairs, and we did eventually sell it.

But I’ll never forget the horror of those few moments.

Any bulldozing bathtubs of doom in your family tales?

46 thoughts on “Um… Hello, 911…?

  1. I’m only running 2 weeks behind but this post I couldn’t let pass. Some years ago I was told this story and the lady telling it swore it was true. I hope it was ’cause I still laugh at it and your story brought it all back.
    Seems she and her hubby lived in San Francisco in one of those town home looking things where people live on top of each other, one apartment at a time. Of course it sat on a hill that had a horribly steep slant to it. She was late getting ready for work and in the bathroom trying to fix her hair. Back then the hair spray contained a lacquer which has since been outlawed. The nozzle got stuck and wouldn’t quit spraying so she dropped it into the toilet so the water would, I suppose, absorb it? Go figure the reasoning. Anyway, her hubby came in to relieve himself and he was smoking a cigarette. Noticing the smell from the aerosol he guessed the hairspray was bad enough so he dropped the cig in the toilet. The KABOOM was felt throughout the apartment and he wound up in the hallway with a broken leg. The wife panicked and called for an ambulance. The fire department came and cleared the apartment making sure no more explosive danger was happening. The ambulance guys, after securing hubby to the gurney, while going down the stairs, asked the wife what happened. She told them about the hairspray and then, while recalling it all, she started laughing. The medics started laughing too and lost control of the gurney, dropping it with hubby and it slid down the stairs all the way to the main front door! The fall and the font door managed to break his other leg. Needless to say, hubby wasn’t pleased. I think, if I remember it correctly, they divorced a while after that.
    Obviously he didn’t have much of a sense of humor.


    • Oh, yikes! I’ve heard variations on that story, but it’s just too bizarre not to be true! And I’m not sure about going as far as divorce, but I don’t know if I’d see the humour in the situation if I was the one hurtling downstairs with a broken leg. Maybe after it was all over and I could walk again… 😉


    • Ah, yes. Deep freezes. We have two of them. But neither was as bad as Hubby’s metal lathe. Now that was a brute.

      And I’ll convey your sentiment to Hubby without asking you to clarify whether he’s lucky to be alive or lucky to be married to me… largely because I’m not sure I want to know. 😉

      Liked by 1 person

  2. No bathtub hijinks yet, but I sat down on a commode right after we moved into a twenty year old house we’d just bought years ago…and it disappeared out from under me. Yep, undiagnosed (and untreated) sealing ring issues. Fixed it, moved on. Otherwise, the house was in very good shape. Just your standard paint and carpet and update routine. Which we’ve done a lot of times.

    Most recent episode, the wife sez, “Honey, why is the floor in my closet wet?”

    Answer: “Because it’s next to the wall with the plumbing in it for the shower, is why.” Make inspection hole in wall, sweat out old leaky shower faucet assembly, sweat in new on, CORRECTLY, make and paint to match a new inspection hole cover, hide it with wife’s new shoe rack, wife is happy, floor is dry.

    Lots of varied episodes of fixage and repairness, but nothing life threatening yet. But today is still young… 🙂

    And look at the Book 10 Progreth Chart! Twenty-five perthent! That’s theriouthly thwell, Thithter! 🙂


    • Oh, yeah. Don’t get me started about toilet flanges and seals. Or about water leaks that create a six-foot-long belly of latex paint filled with water in the bulkhead of the level below. Or, or…

      And thankth! I’m a plotting machine!

      Liked by 1 person

  3. Oh wow, how scary! I didn’t think it was possible for two people to just pick up a tub and carry it (apparently, it’s not 😉 ). How fortunate he wasn’t injured. But hey, you got a blog post out of it. That makes every experience worthwhile, doesn’t it? 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Love it Diane! Two questions – 1) Did you count the expletives that were forth-coming from hubby? 2) Come on, be honest. Right after you thought, “Shit, I just killed my husband with a bathtub,” did you ask yourself, “Did I send the check for his life insurance last month?”

    Liked by 1 person

  5. What a story Diane!! You had me at the edge of my seat. Amazing that he wasn’t hurt more seriously. I can totally see how it would happen. We recently bought a bed in a cabinet and moving it up the stairs at one point I had that terrible sensation that someone might at the least lose a limb. No bath tub escapades thankfully!

    Liked by 1 person

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