I haven’t talked about the praving because there really hasn’t been any of note lately. I didn’t encounter anything terribly interesting so I it has kinda stayed put. But then the issue of Spanish mops came in to the picture.
You see, Spanish mops are a good deal better at mopping than your standard American mop, especially the sponge mop, which is derided and ridiculed to no end by Spaniards touting the Iberian Mop Agenda. The only issue is that while it’s easy to toss a mop head or two in the suitcase when returning from a Spanish trip, it isn’t so easy to get them mounted on a stick in the US for use and sticks are too big to bring back from Spain. The threads are all out of whack because of this thing we keep refusing to use called the Metric System. So, giving up rather easy, the mops sat, sad and unused for endless months.
On the most recent Spanish trip for the holidays, I learned that the threads on the mop heads were somewhat ignored when it came to getting a particular head on a particular stick. Naturally, folks turned to the almighty prav, or as it is known in Spain, the chapuza. In this case, my mother in law showed me that it’s just a matter of keeping the hard plastic in a pot of boiling water long enough to get the plastic pliable and then force it on the stick.
This seemed simple enough and was one of the more elegant pravs I’ve seen, but in getting back home, I quickly found that it didn’t work. The stick was really too big to fit the head no matter how much time the head spent in a pot of boiling water. This required more desperate measures.
Digging deep in to the praving that courses through my veins and summoning up all pravosity, I came up with the idea that the plastic just needed to stretch more, which meant fire. Seeing as how I had recycled the stick from the previous sponge mop, I took advantage of the fact it was made out of metal and decided to heat it up in the flame from the gas burners on the stove. This only met with mild success as the mop head didn’t melt fast enough to allow the stick to attach before cooling to the point where it wouldn’t melt anymore. To get around this issue, I tool the bread knife and sliced down the horizontal axis of the plastic on the mop head. Then I heated up the stick again and shoved it in. It stuck. All was well, the prav seemed to work.
And work it did for about two minutes until the plastic that had melted cracked around the stick. I was back to square one until I decided that heavier artillery was needed and I got out my drill and a wood chisel. I took the chisel and fully split the shaft on the mop head. Then I took the drill and made a hole through the mop head that matched up with holes on the metal stick. When I put it together, it all lined up and I tried to use the pin that was left over from my sponge mop salvage. That worked for a minute, but the pin kept falling out. In typical praving fashion, I would have turned to bailing wire at this point, but I didn’t have any around. I used the second best thing in this case, which was to cut up an old clothes hanger, thread it through the hole on the stick and then give it a good twist to secure it. Did it work? Oh yeah, you betcha!
From this, I have learned two things. One is that the leaps and bounds in to which I’m becoming my father are terrifying. Secondly, I think I should probably start giving my “emergency contacts” a head’s up anytime I work on new pravs.