I’m taking one of those random days off where you get a lot of stuff done that’s difficult to get scheduled on the weekend. First on the agenda was getting the chimney swept. We have a pretty good service – one of their best features is that they are very, very punctual. So the annual drill goes thusly: guys show up right at 8 and get to work on the chimney. I sit with the dog and feel useless, then write a check. At some point, they marvel at how gunky our chimney is and I tell them that, yes, we’re New Englanders and we like our nightly winter fires. Then they go away. This year included a particularly irritating addendum to the usual routine.
Mr. Chimney Sweep hands me the work order and notes the price. He asks: “Do you get your chimney swept every year?”
Me: “Yes, every year for the last eight years we’ve lived here. Like clockwork. We know we have a lot of fires.”
MCS: “You should get it done every year, because it was really bad.”
Me: “Yeah – we do. Every year.”
MCS: “The chimney walls look good, but I’ve written here that you should get it swept every year.”
Me: Silently screaming. “Okay.”