Yin & Yang

I’ve seen Yin/Yang described as chaos and order, crisis and opportunity.

I got tired of trying to look it up. So the hell with it.

Witness Chaos:

What you see here is the cleanup process of a toolbox dump.

I have a toolbox that handles irrigation – sprinkler parts, hose parts, tools, and a few PVC fittings. Kind of a crash kit for dealing with sprinkler and hose repairs. I have a garden shovel, a pry bar, a saw, PVC cutters, and a few old channellock knockoffs in it so when there’s an issue I can simply grab the kit and go fix the problem.

I put the case on top of a metal trash can to fix a hose before watering the front yard. When I came back, it all was in a big upsidedown pile on the floor. Two things hit me, first was I have a crapton of sprinkler heads. Second was that I have to stop chucking the dirty tools and busted parts back in the box when I’m finished.

Turns out I had an extra plastic compartmentalized box I could use for sprinkler heads. So I put back the tools, fittings, and pop ups as well as hose parts back into the case and dumped the heads into the bucket you see on the left.

Got a beer and sat down in the sunroom to watch youtubes and sort my sprinker head stash.

Behold Order:

There’s order here. R-L columns – full, half, quarter, special.

Seems like a lot. But consider last time I tested a zone, Crazy girl Aria ruined a popup and three heads in the fifteen seconds or so it took me to shut it off. A few weeks before I had to replace a pop up at the curb. I fix something at least once a quarter.

Sprinkler systems are kind of a pain in the ass. Or rather, big box stores like Home Despot and Lowes are a pain. They’ll stock this or that type of heads and popups but not all. And only a few, such as RainBird and Hunter are cross compatible. Home Depot is the worst, since when they change, they remove all others. Now, all they have is Orbit, pretty much. Lowes will have Rainbird, but not all of what I’d need.

And when things go pear-shaped in the yard, you’ll find the part you need is a Toro, so you’ll have to replace the whole unit since you’ll never find the heads anywhere near.

Pro Tip here: Get the parts on the web. Sprinklerwarehouse has a huge selection at a fraction of the cost of hardware stores. I think the rainbird heads I bought were $1.98/ea. That’s why I have a huge collection. I need one, I buy five. And I buy extra pop ups knowing full well that when one goes tits up, or I have to replace it because the ground has changed, I’ll have what I need on hand.

I collect PVC fittings as well. 1/2″, 3/4″, 1″, 1/5″, 2. I have two small bins, one for small – 1/2 to 1″ and the other for large – 1.5″ and above – think water feeds vs. drains. It seems like a lot but if you count each bin, you’re looking at maybe $30 of fittings, tops.

That’s $30 well spent when things go sideways on a Sunday.

For whatever reason, that seems to be the day I notice these problems.

What kills me is that I’m certain I have a bathroom sink drain somewhere in my stash. It’ll turn up soon because I don’t need it any longer, having bought and installed one already.

Slowly but surely I’m bringing order back to my life. I’ve started with the nuts and bolt collection, now the fittings, before it was my network parts.

It’s a worthy process.

Tomorrow I dig out my pigsty of an office to prepare for the coming week.