It's not about the house.

Thursday, July 12, 2007

Day 37: Plugging Away

Every day this week I’ve been meaning to get started on the closet. But every day this week I've forgotten to ask Johnny before he left for work what “getting started on the closet” might entail. And by the time he would get home, I’d have found something else to do that day – so then why bother asking?

Finally, this morning, I remembered. He wasn’t all the way awake yet, but I remembered to ask him and then it was his job to remember after he’d had a cup of tea. He didn’t, but I (for once) remembered to remind him:

Wash with bleach, let dry, then sand.

Well, I knew that. I just thought there’d be another step or two involved.

In the car on the way to dropping him at work, Johnny reminded me of the fact that we had no bleach. I knew we had no bleach because – say it with me – I sprayed all the bleach we had, quart by hateful quart, all over that pain-in-my door a month ago. And no, I haven’t bothered to replace it. Because I haven’t needed it yet, so why would I?

“But that’s okay,” I told him. “I’ll just pick some up on my way home. Then I can wash it before I go to work, let it dry while I’m there, and then sand it after—Oh.”

I wasn’t dressed.

… is what I was wearing. And that’s it. No shoes, no bra, no nothing. I did have my wallet, though, in case I (god forbid) broke down and needed to show my AAA card to the tow truck guy. (Apparently, however, I never thought through what else I might be showing to the tow truck guy if the car should (god forbid) break down.)

So, balls. I can’t get bleach on the way home. Which means I have to either go home, get dressed, and go back out, or else just pick it up while I’m at work, which means most likely not being able to wash and sand today. Except hey wait a second—


“Johnny, you’re dressed. Would you mind running in the Kwik-E-Mart and picking up a jug of bleach? We just so happen to be stopped right here in front of it…”

So phew. I get home, and I set to.

Bleach, bucket, water – check. Johnny said about ¼ cup per gallon, so – glug glug glug – that looks about right. Rags, rags, rags… Up in the attic! Got ’em. Scissors. Okay, check on the rags. Ladder for the high parts? Check. Now go!

Hang on, am I supposed to be really scrubbing, or just kind of wiping it off? I forgot to ask him. Well, wiping it off sounds good. La la…

Ew. Why do the shelves smell like cat pee?

I’m almost done, and since I’m on my hands and knees here I figure I might as well go ahead and wash the floor – and hell, might’s well do the door, too, while I’m at it, because we all know I’m not going to be stripping that bastard any time in the near future. Oh, hey, speaking of the floor, take ye a gander:

Okay, so I forgot to snap this picture before it got covered with sand-the-walls dusty crap (and I’m hardly going to go vacuuming just for you lot), but still, you can kind of see. My point is: pretty nice floor, eh? This is the only bit of it in the entire house that was never painted or lino’d over, and somehow I never noticed it till now.

(P.S. I wouldn’t normally recommend washing your hardwood with a solution of bleach, but desperate (or lazy) times call for desperate (or you-know) measures. Right?)

Where was I? Oh yeah, don’t do this with your wash bucket:

Nothing bad happened. I’m just saying. Not a good idea.

Okay, I’m finished. Now, Johnny said I’d need to dry it with a fan…

Have I mentioned yet that there’s just one outlet in my office? I probably haven’t. Yeah, the fridge is in one socket and there’s a power outlet in the other – with one of those convert-two-prongs-to-three-prongs things. The computer, printer, monitor, light, and cable-conversion thingy are all plugged into the power strip – which sometimes just falls out of the socket in the wall because it’s too heavy for the convert-two-prongs-to-three-prongs thing.

The point is, I have to get the super-duper extension cord that Johnny bought (“for me”) at Job Lot:

and run it

all the way

into the kitchen.

Oh balls. I should probably have put the fan up on a chair or something. Okay, fine, go get a chair out of the kitchen… trip and unplug the extension cord… set the fan up… plug it back in… resolve to tread carefully around the house for the next half-hour until I (thankfully) have to leave for work.

Oh crap. I forgot to wash the door.

More rag more bleach more bucket (which at least means one more occupant of the bottomless ragbag can go – yoink – into the trash)

And in the shower and dressed and off to work.

The sanding part, as much as I hate sanding, was uneventful. Except for the fact that when it was over I remembered this horrid little bit:

In case you can’t tell by the photo, it’s the hanger pole (“hanger pole” – what do you call it? I know it has a name, and I know I know it, but I can’t remember. You know what I mean: the pole you hang the hangers on). And it’s disgusting. Covered in masking tape (masking tape! Who uses masking tape for anything anymore?) and positively black on top from contact with wire hangers – or else just from spider poo.

I’ll work my tail off for the rest of it, but this part – this part? – I’m throwing out. I'll buy a dowel from Home Depot and anyone who has a problem with that – anyone who thinks this part might be original to the house and therefore must be saved – feel free to come on over.

I’ll hit you with it.

Day 37: Accomplished
Time: 75 minutes
Cost: $1.50 for the bleach. Which we needed anyway. So never mind.
Realizing That I Didn't Have To Do The Door After All Because It Has To Match The Room And Not The Closet: Priceless

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