Air Gaps

Our dishwasher is broken.

Actually . . . no it's not.

But it is acting a little funny, pouring water out of that spout from the top of the sink. It's not suppose to do that and we're gonna have to call a guy.

Actually . . . no we don't.

For those of you who don't know what that spout is, which included me until I looked it up this morning, it's called the "Air Gap"

See . . . your dishwasher grabs a bunch of hot water, pours it all over your dishes, along with some soap, and then pumps all the dirty water out into your disposal.

But there is a problem with a direct dishwasher-to-disposal system.

Water likes to travel down, but it also has no problem with traveling back up, which means in times of floods, or clogs, or a destabilization of the earth's magneto-sphere, that gross sewer water can climb back up and wreak havoc on your anti-bacterial lifestyle.

Enter the Air Gap.

A little valve the creates a space between the hoses so that ooey, gooey water can flow out, but not back in. It's a neat little system. And easy to fix with a wrench and an old tooth brush. There might be a little pipe cleaning involved too.

No biggie.

I haven't done it yet, but I'll get to it before Thursday.


Anyway, it's not the first time I'd heard the term "air-gapped." It's also used to describe a computer that hasn't been connected to the internet before. The virtual boy in a bubble.

Air gaps are part of our national heritage.

Did you know that we don't really live in a Democracy? Who woulda thunk?

A democratic system is where everybody gets to vote for everything (sorta).

We don't do that.

Our system is set up so that we vote for a select few people who vote on some things. It's called Republic (for which it stands), and the idea is that there is an Air Gap between the mob and the deciders. It means that during a time of crisis, cooler heads may prevail.

It doesn't always work like that of course. This isn't the kind of air gap you can fix with a wrench and an old toothbrush. Squeaky clean isn't safe either. In fact, you actually want a little bilgy backsplash to bubble up once in a while.

Ivory towers offer a pretty view and all, but it's important to get down in the muck for a little perspective.

What I think our system is missing is National Air Gap Day, where we all get together, with our proverbial wrenches and old tooth brushes and scrub out all the effluvia gumming up the works.

I guess the hard part is getting to agree on which part of the flow is hot-soapy goodness, and which part is half chewed chicken fat and raw sewage.

Maybe, instead of a day, maybe we need a fourth system of government. Air Gap Cleaners that sort of steer the national debate.

The Supreme Court should appoint the members of Air Gap and it's mission isn't to come up with stuff, it's mission is to decide what things we're NOT gonna fight about this year.

Like the liberals have to shut up about high-speed rail and the Republicans are forbidden to talk about God.

Can you just imagine?

It wouldn't solve particular problems, but it would be a step in the right direction. A clean regulated flow, rather than everybody blowing out their mouth holes what they should be blowing out their butt holes.

We could probably get this done by Thursday if we really put our minds to it.

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