We Should Get That Guy Who Does A Half-Assed Job To Fix Our RoofCommentary • Opinion • ISSUE 40•42 • Oct 20, 2004 By Scott Bethke Scott Bethke Honey, take a look at the ceiling. Notice how you can see the nails through the paint? That's water damage. The roof must be leaking. No, the upstairs bathroom is over the kitchen. It's definitely the roof. We need to take care of this before the drywall rots or the lights short out. Hey, you know the guy who built Sheila and Barry's old deck? You remember, the one that collapsed at their Fourth of July cookout? We should get him to fix our roof. I know we have his phone number around here somewhere. Yeah, it's on the fridge magnet. Here, Don Maliszewski. I know it says "Dan." That's a typo. He gave the Garvers a bunch of these magnets when he came to redo his job on their sewer pipe after it flooded their basement. Hang on, it's ringing. Oh, shoot. "The number you have reached has been disconnected." Boy, maybe his gambling debts finally caught up to him. You know what? I don't need to call him. He practically lives at Flannery's Tavern. I'll just scoot over there and let him know we want an estimate. He gave the Johnsons a great quote on their wiring. It ended up costing more, but that's how these things go. Don explained that the cost of materials went up, which is why he needed an extra $200 for light switches. Well, they still saved a bundle. They would've had to spend $500 more if they'd gone to a licensed electrician. Instead, they were able to use that money to stay in a hotel after that terrible fire. He did the Garvers' fence, too. You used to be able to see it from here, but it blew down during that storm. It looked good when it was up, though. The slats were all even. Too bad it had to be the only thing in the neighborhood that got damaged in the storm. Must have been one of those freak wind gusts you hear about on the news. Anyway, the Garvers said he was great whenever he showed up. He's a really interesting guy. He has all kinds of stories about back when he was a biker. Did you hear about the time he got knifed at the Sturgis rally? That story is amazing! I'm not married to using him, though. The responsible thing to do is to get price quotes from several people. Hey! We should ask those high-school kids who mow lawns if they want to give fixing the roof a shot. They might be pretty good at it. When they're mowing lawns, they miss a lot of spots and leave the trimmings lying around, but maybe they'd be better at something more challenging, like roofing. Or, hey, how about that guywhat's his name? Jerry Anderson? The guy who got arrested for trespassing and peeping? You don't spend all that time on a roof without picking up a thing or two about how it's put together. Unless some of the other quotes come back really low, I think Don's our guy. He did a nearly adequate job on the bay windows in the Perrys' house. He finished that job about a year ago, and it's still holding up. It took a little longer than they planned, but only because the city halted the construction. Yes, Don was wrong when he said they didn't need a permit. But he offered to finish the job late at night, when the city inspectors would be off duty. So work was held up for a few weeks, but Don did a super job taping that tarp over the hole in their wall. It rained three times, and not a drop got through! Oh, no... I just remembered that Don's in jail! Well, I don't know that the roof is so bad that we can't wait the few months until he's free. It's not like he killed a guy on purpose. His scaffolding collapsed when his partner climbed on it, honey. They charged Don with, I don't know, something shy of manslaughter... neglect? Negligence! That's the word. If a jury said he didn't kill the guy on purpose, that's all I need to hear. Shoot, everyone makes mistakes. I'm all in favor of giving someone a second or third chance. Honey, no. I don't trust the Yellow Pages. You don't know anything about those guys. "Licensed and bonded"what does that even mean? Who licenses them, and what is a bond, in this case? Honey, a guy in the phone book is likely to tell you anything to get your money. But you practically have to beg Don to agree to take on a job. Yes, I'd really prefer to go with someone unreliable whom we know. The roof will turn out all right. You just wait and see. Now, let's go visit Don in the pokey so we can get things rolling.