We have known Special Snowflake (SS) for almost twenty years. She is a nice person but careless in her words and actions which unfortunately has cost her some relationships in the past. This is one such story.
DH, DD and I have hosted an annual pumpkin carving party for friends and neighbors for the past five years. This year SS and her family were able to join us for the first time, as SS had moved away upon marrying her DH and it coincided with an open weekend on their calendar. We hosted SS and family for the duration of their stay.
During the course of the evening, SS stated that she wanted to bake pumpkin seeds. She collected the pulp of all the pumpkins and disappeared inside to make her pumpkin seeds. Party was a success. Guests all have a great time. Everyone turns in for the night. Fast forward to the next morning, SS pokes her head in our bedroom to tell us they are leaving and by the way, our laundry room had flooded overnight.
DH immediately hops out of bed and goes downstairs to assess the situation. The laundry room floor had flooded at some point during the night but most of the water had recessed into the floor drain. DH gets out the wet vac, starts slurping up the remaining water, then for good measure, removes the floor drain’s cover, and sticks the wet vac’s nozzle down the drain. The floor drain is packed with pumpkin pulp; SS had dumped the pulp of sixteen pumpkins down our garbage disposal. DH calls the local plumber and makes an appointment for the next day (DH is a master electrician, he doesn’t do well with water – it’s his natural enemy). Plumber arrives on schedule and has to snake the drain three times to clear the pumpkin pulp.
SS calls later in the week to see if we found what caused the flooding, and I told her the culprit was the pumpkin pulp. Her response was, “Oops, my bad. Plumbing problems suck don’t they?,” and then switched topics.
What say you, eHellions? Is it rude not to offer to pay for all or at least part of the repair? What do you do in these situations, as either party? 1203-15
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Suck it up. But I would say, if she is a Special Snowflake, this isn’t the first time something like this has happened. If you must remain friends (and I wonder about that) I would keep her at arm’s length most of the time…she can’t be trusted to say, “I think I screwed up, I’m sorry.” Geez…she didn’t even apologize! I mean, what kind of a friend doesn’t?
Oh…wait…SHE ISN’T REALLY A FRIEND!!
The proper response is: “Oh my goodness, I am sorrier than I can express! Please, please tell me how much the repairs are, and I will mail you a check immediately.” Then you send along a check, and flowers with an apology note.
This is what small claims court was invented for. File papers and get your money back.
I agree with this idea.
Unless you’re willing to chalk up the repair as the cost of a lesson learned, she should be held financially accountable for her actions.
She should have offered to pay for the fix.
Depending upon cost I would likely have declined her money. Are we talking 100 dollars or 1000 here?
Was the bill more or less than $500? I think that if it’s more than $500, you tell SS you expect her to pay the bill. If she doesn’t, haul her into small claims. If it’s less than $500, say that it cost her $500 and you’d appreciate her helping out with the bill. If she doesn’t, drop her as a friend.
Ugh. The fact that this friend didn’t immediately offer to pay for all or part of the plumbing bill proves that she was never a friend in the first place. Pay the bill, dump the friend. Not just from being a houseguest–I have had “friends” like this and it usually only takes once or twice. More than twice, shame on me.
If you are a guest and damage something you should offer to pay for it. If the cost of the repair is nominal, the host should decline. If it’s not insignificant, the host should allow the guest to at least contribute to the cost of repair. If I was the one who caused the damage, it would make me feel a lot better to at least pay part of it.
I pay $200ish for a single snake. Were OP and her husband charged $600 for having their drain snaked three times? That is a lot of money. I don’t have any advice to give, because I never had a friend cause $600 worth of damage to my property and then just waltz away. Definitely never invite her over again, and I think I would mention the expense and the expectation for her to cover all or part of it. As for where to go from there when she says no (and she will say no…) I’m curious myself, so will be following this thread to find out what others say.
I would be absolutely mortified in SS’s place. Oh wait, I wouldn’t, because I would never think of dumping a truckload of pumpkin pulp into my friend’s garbage disposal!! *shakes head*