Done and Done…. Right?

I bleached out the fountain in the front yard today. It had literally gone green with algae. Who knew that water recycled through two tiers of fancifully molded concrete would sprout day-glo green algae within a month? Who, I ask you?

Okay, probably everybody who has ever owned a fountain. Or a pool. Or paid any attention to water.


So okay, maybe I should have expected it. But when I create something or install something, I imagine it staying that way forever. That’s why I like books. Once you publish them, they’re set. Don’t need to touch them anymore. Sometimes you can’t touch them anymore. And I love that sense of finality, brushing my hands together and saying, “Done and done!” and moving on.

I like to move on, so much so that I sometimes fantasize that’s the way everything works. Hence the Fountain Algae Disaster of 2021.

The fountain was given to me by a generous neighbor who was moving away from the neighborhood and didn’t want to haul 500lbs of concrete fountain with them (yes, it’s that heavy). And apparently he had some trouble moving it just two houses down as well because when I received it, it had a broken hose and an electrical cord that had been severed in half. Both bits of damage had obviously happened when the heavy pieces, which stack on top of one another, got twisted and ground over the tube and the cord, which run up through the center of the fountain pieces. He must have inadvertently done this as he wrestled the pieces apart for transport.

No problem. I’m a handy guy. Got tools and everything. I stripped and rewired the cord, cut and re-attached the tube and said to myself, “Done and done! I never have to mess with that again.”

A few weeks later, the algae sprouted.

This afternoon, I faced my slimy green fountain and got back to work. Scoop scoop scoop: chucking out the water and the film of slime that came along with it. Spray spray spray: rinsing out the giant tiers of the fountain. Scrub scrub scrub: putting some soapy water and a rag to good use—which got immediately thrown away afterwards. Ick. Refill refill refill: stock the fountain with fresh water and, this time, two capfuls of bleach. Now the fountain is running clear and smells like a swimming pool.

Done and done.


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