Every child knows Murphy’s law. I think it becomes slowly ingrained in us as we grow up, because what we plan can often crumble before our very eyes like an old piece of parchment. In no other experience have I found this to be true than with home improvement. Of course, this is coming from a person who has the technical skills equivalent to child banging two sticks together.
This lovely affair began July 25 after the final signature noted I have purchased the house on NE A Street. I learned my house was built in the early 1900s (the front half) and there were many elements which needed to be updated and changed. My mother, who was more than willing to pick up the task, developed a plan of action to start implementing changes.
It is absolutely confounding to me that even the simplest of tasks can turn into disarray right before your eyes. Window blinds. I mean, a couple of screws, brackets, and everything should just flow together with an ease. I have never been more frustrated in my life than trying to hang window blinds, and I’ve seen the Phantom Menace, twice. Don’t worry reader, I can hear the snickers come through the page into my ears, but trust me, this was not an easy task.
It took my father and I every bit of an hour just to hang one of the four blinds which encircle my living room. As a quick side note, and this is a question I am just posing: Is there ever a point when you are helping your father or he is helping you that he doesn’t talk to you as seven-years-old? That is not intended to be a criticism, because I don’t think my father and I have rarely every had much of argument after I graduated high school, unless we are working together trying to build something. I think it is genetic…somewhere in our lines of coding deep in the DNA there is a certain sequence which dictates that whenever we work on something technical, it is best just not speak with us. As an example, the ends of the brackets would not fold down and cradle the blind rods as it should. Being a courteous guy I asked my dad, “I see you are having problems with that. Mind if I give it a try?” My tone was even, not even a hint of sarcasm. I know that is hard to believe, but it was true. After the words escaped my mouth, I saw the look in my father’s eyes. I didn’t know they could turn red.
But after three hours to hang four blinds, it was decided that the next task should be to paint my fence with black Rustoleum. Now, I do mean literally paint, with brushes and rollers. We only used spray cans to touch up. This may be a sore spot if my parent’s are reading this, so I end this column with just a brief notation: There may have been one of the members of our party who was painting and forgot the location of the paint can. There will be no names mentioned, but because of this, I now have a permanent black block of paint on my driveway. The funny thing about Rustoleum is, it takes a hurricane if not more to remove it.
I began this column trying to pick a couple of the best stories of my home improvements, but for the most part, after review these seem minor. But, I will be remodeling my bathroom here within the next couple of months…
Grant is a staff writer for the Greene County Daily World. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.