It All Started With A Little Paint…

So my daughter decided she wanted to paint the hall bath.  Despite my being a pretty useless cripple, I persuaded her to at least allow me to patch the holes in the drywall.  Our house is like 30 years old, and it had been a rental for a while, so it’s seen better days.  The cheapo towel rack had eventually ripped out of the wall, and the toilet paper holder wasn’t far behind. 

I could hardly begrudge her a little paint, the whole house is painted eggshell, with bright white ceilings.  It’s probably been the same coat of paint for about 10 years.  Well, except the kitchen.  The kitchen is a lovely shade of dark brown cheap ass 1965 panelling.  That’s another story which has yet to be written. 

Ok, so I can’t do much at a time.  I’m a cripple.  I’m taking my time, doing a little patching one day, a little sanding a few days later when I recover, yada yada yada.  Two weeks ago, my wife and daughter head to Kentucky and I plan on spending the whole weekend writing.  Yeah, shoulda known that wasn’t gonna happen.

James comes to me and says, “Dad, can we host the cast party for the musical at school?”

“Sure, when is it?”

“Next weekend.”


The kids have all their toiletries all down the hall carpet, because I’ve got the bathroom torn up.

So I have to get into what is for me now, overdrive.  What should take me a day or two takes me weeks now.  But as long as I’m patching the holes in the drywall, I might as well do the tape joint where the walls meet the ceiling, because the 30 year old tape job is coming apart and needs attention.  And as long as I’m at it, I might as well replace the $2 rental home bathroom light.  Found a really nice one at the Depot, chrome with white porcelain accents.  And the goddamned fart fan is the size of a matchbox, and doesn’t do squat but run up the electric bill, so I might as well replace that rusty old piece of crap. 

300 cfm of pure sucking pleasure, baby!  (That’s “cubic feet per minute”, for those of you non-construction bums.)  That sonuvabitch will out suck most cheap hookers.

Before they left, the girls picked out the paint for the walls.  Lime fucking green.  What the hell am I gonna do to match that paint?  It looks even worse on the walls than it does on the can.  Fuckin’ women.

Might as well replace that $1.50 plastic medicine cabinet with the fake brass trim that’s been peeling off since before I was born.   It’s only about big enough for a tube of chapstick and a condom anyway.

I rip it out of the wall, and whatya know?  The wet wall is 8″ deep and no pipes behind the medicine cabinet.  I love when that happens.  Daddy gonna build a medicine cabinet to take advantage of all the space.

Long as I’ve got the wall open, there’s no receptacle in the bathroom, so I might as well install a GFI.

But what about the lime fucking green paint?  Banana yellow.  Yep.  Banana fucking yellow.  I rock.  I am a genius.  It is the only shade of any color in the world which will salvage this fucking can of Lime fucking green paint.  I’ll trim around the door and the baseboard with banana yellow.  Might as well replace the light and fan switches and the cheap ass plastic plate.  Got good metal ones and painted them yellow to match the trim.

Nice medicine cabinet.  All red oak, with a golden oak stain.  No one will ever see them, but it’s all dovetailed together, dado and rabbit joints for the shelves, not a nail or screw in it, ‘cept for the hinges and the handle.  I rock.

Y’know what would be cool, and would help tie things together?  That glass shelf and toilet paper holder at the Depot that sort of match the light.  I’ll mount them on oak blocks to tie in with the medicine cabinet.  Oh, and the hooks on that coat rack?  They match the rest, but the mount is cheap ass crap.  I’ll dismount them, and mount them on matching oak blocks.

Wife and daughter bought some cheap white cabinets for the bath.  I’ll hang them for now, but replace them later.  I like the idea of the wall cabinet and the etagere, but they’re cheap particle board snap together things.  I’ll copy the style and build nice ones down the road.

Wife and daughter picked up a jungle themed shower curtain at my direction, and I added a paint transfer bush behind the new door.  It was one of those crappy brown fake wood hollow core P.O.S. doors that run through the whole house.  I put in a new masonite door (Pop did the mortising and knob hole drilling, he’s got the stuff to hang doors, being a carpenter and all.)  I put new brass hinges and a decent little handle on it, instead of a regular knob.  It’s much dressier.

Long as I’m at it:  Yep, matching faucet.  Sweet.

11:30 PM on the eve of the cast party, I’m still slinging yellow paint on the door trim.  It’ll have to do.

My blogs are all but cobwebby, but as long as I can move, I have to be doing stuff.

I’m joking with the family.  “I should start my own reality TV show: ‘Pimp my toilet’.

It turned out pretty well for having started with a cripple and some lime green paint, I think.  Of course, now the entire rest of the house looks even worse, next to the pimped out banya.

I got it all done in time, and while I was still mobile, I figured I’d try to work on the freeze board project I started a few months ago.  I managed to make it all the way across the back of the house.  I still have to fill the screw holes and do the touch up paint, then I can hang some crown mould and stuff.

See, when they built the house, they just slapped in some skank 2X6s, just barely hanging on the wall, then slapped on some 1/4″ plywood and cheap ass metal trim.  It’s the cheapest way to do it.  (The freeze board is the part of the house that comes down from the roof to lap over the top of the brick wall, so the rain doesn’t run behind it.)  I don’t blame them, their job is to slap up as many houses as they can in the shortest amount of time with the least amount of money.  But after 30 years, it rotting and crappy and now that the house is mine, I want to fix things right.  It’s a construction bum thing. 

So I took some 2X4s, built a little wall on top of the brick (deck screws, no way in hell I can drive 16 penny nails), and put some 3/4” pine board up with finishing screws.  It’s painted Sidesaddle (brown), and I’m thinking I’ll go with some Family Legacy (tan) to trim other parts of the house.  Before I started, it was all the same eggshell that’s inside the house, except the gutters which are the most godawful red-brown.  It’s horrendous.  Anyway, so what should have taken a day took me several months to be able to do.  And it’s just the back of the house.  I still have both ends and the front to do.

There’s a homeless woodpecker out back now, and some pissed off European Starlings, but they’ll get over it.  At least I’ll be able to shower in peace now.  (The “master bath” sticks out on the back of the house, and was open at the freezeboard for a while now.)  Goddamn woodpecker trying to see my pecker wood.  I ain’t shy, but I’m choosy, y’know?

Anyways, that’s the long and the short of my emergency disappearence.  I’ll try to get pictures up tomorrow, because I have a feeling that that’s about all I’m going to be able to do.  I’ve used up my quota of good days for quite some time, I think.

I hurt like hell, and I’m going to go shower now.  In fact, I think I’ll take a bath.  I’m a little afraid of falling, my legs have been acting up bad today.  Meds and spinning blades don’t mix, and I had to use the spinning blades.  I’ve been a terror, but not as bad as last time I was without meds.  Knowing what was going on helped me to mitigate the collateral damage, I think, though I’ve had my moments.  Kay was pretty pissed at me for a couple days there.  God only knows what horrible things I may have said in my insanity.

Anyways again, I’m taking my meds in the morning.  Dr. Jeckyl should replace Mr. Hyde shortly thereafter.

Thanks for all of your concern.  There was just no way I could do any blogging at the end of the day.  The only thing I could manage was to crawl into bed and hope I didn’t have to pee until morning.

‘Til tomorrow.

So Where Were We?

For starters, I’m beat.  I’m drained, kaput, exhausted, running on empty.

But enough about my I.Q. …  🙂

Seriously, here’s where things stand (for those of you keeping score) –

Wife Jane – Love her heart, she’s up and around this morning, cleaning the kitchen and just brought me some coffee.  I’ve got a massive headache either from lack of good sleep, lack of caffeine, or just general stress.  Wait, this wasn’t about me, was it?

Wife Jane, Take Two – So she’s doing better, but still sore as hell.  She’s up and about though, and handling problems at work by phone.  She’s still walking like me, but she’s improving.  I’m really glad the Crippled Old Man Shuffle looks to be temporary.  It’s not very attractive.  🙂

Daughter KaylaFace – Driving all over town at her second drivers’ ed road class yesterday.  I am so very proud of how well she’s doing I can’t contain it.  And despite the fact that we all know how long they’ll last, I really do appreciate all the promises she’s making about taking care of a lot of the driving errands for me once she’s loose on the road.  Makes me feel old though, and I damned near cried when I went to pick her up after lesson number one.  I hadn’t expected them to leave the parking lot of the high school, but when I arrived they were nowhere to be found.  After about five minutes, she pulled the car into the parking lot and parked it right at the front doors of the school like she’d been doing it all her life.  They’d been out cruising the neighborhoods.

She’s a little worried about today though.  They’re learning to park.  Residential neighborhoods?  No prob.  Two lane highway?  Piece of cake.  Rush hour traffic on the four lanes of U.S. 17  through town?  Walk in the park.  Put the car between two yellow lines in an empty parking lot?  Scary, apparently.


Pop – Probably coming home today.  He was up and around yesterday, with the physical therapist in tow.  She brought a walker with her for him.  He laughed and told her I needed it more than he did.  He was right.  Put the lady on his arm and cruised off down the hall with her, leaving the walker in the room.  He’s still a working carpenter, and intends to go right back at it.  Good for him.  I should be in so good a condition.  I believe they’ll be prying his hammer from his cold dead hand long after I’m worm bait.

He said they did two “brain scans” on him.  From what I could gather, one was an EEG, and the other an MRI maybe.  Doc says that it may not be his middle ear after all, but an after effect of a mini stroke he seems to have had at some time in the past.

If I know Pop, he was probably on a roof or something and just ate a Tums and went on.  “Stroke?  Nah, indigestion.  Gimme another truss.  I don’t have time for a stroke.”

Fuckin’ Ironman.

Two Separate Trips To The E.R. Today

My father collapsed right about noon today. I was in the middle of some posts for UDoJ that would be time delayed to give me a fighting chance to post over here. Needless to say, I dropped and ran. Hence the relative silence.

Pop’s had an aneurysm in his aorta the docs have been carefully watching, and of course that was my first thought. Since he made it to the E.R. still alive, I pretty much could rule that out, thank the FSM.

Then I was thinking stroke, because chest and arm pain wasn’t involved. After several hours of tests and cat scans and all that jazz, they determined that its probably some weird problem involving his middle ear. That’s where the little gyroscope in your body is that controls balance and direction. So they’re thinking that it went haywire, sending him into a mad shock of vertigo. The dizziness put him down. Major scare, minor problem relatively speaking.

Ok, ’round 4:30 they get him settled into a room upstairs, they’re keeping him for observation overnight. I called all the family to let them know he was OK, and talked to the wife on the phone who was running errands.

Kayla’s partner didn’t show up for drivers’ ed, so she has to wait until tomorrow to start.

I got home, hung up my jacket and keys, kissed my son, pet the dog, and let out a sigh of relief that the day was nearly over and I could relax. Took the meds I’d missed and was just about to lay down. I’d been in the house maybe five minutes when the phone rang.

My wife is hysterically bawling on the phone, some young girl had rear-ended her. Right back out the door. Kay’s OK, but Jane looks pretty rough and she’s in a neck brace. I watched as the paramedics extricated her from the car and strapped her on a back board. Kay was pretty upset. Of course I had to hang around waiting for the State Trooper to show up.

He was quick and professional, helpful, and let me go to the E.R. as soon as he could, promising to meet me there to take my wife’s statement. He did show up, took her statement and Kay’s and told us there would be no problems with the insurance company, the other driver was 100% at fault. (I should say so, Jane was stopped at a red light!) Our car was barely scraped, the other driver’s was a wreck. She had hit Jane still going so fast that her front end slid right up under our car and just scratched the bumper and tailpipe.

We’re home now (except Pop), and Kay is fine, Jane is badly bruised and sore. Personally, I’m worn out.


My Poor Neglected Blog

As you can tell, with all the writing Janie’s doing for UDoJ, as well as both the girls writing for Molly now, and all the things going on here at the homestead, there hasn’t been much attention paid to this little corner of the blogoverse.

Sorry about that.  I intend to correct that soon.

Quick updates:

Feeling much better now that the meds have found their way through my system.  My wife has decided not to trade me in for the cash just yet, so that’s good.

James is doing much better in school, and I’m getting much better reports from his teachers, now that they’ve put away the stick in favor of the carrot.  He’s even got his lead role back in the play, about which he’s incredibly excited.

KaylaFace is feeling better and is back at school and just about caught up with all the work she missed while sick.  Additionally, she starts the driving portion of her Drivers’ Ed course this afternoon.  I understand the highway patrol has cordoned off a 100 mile radius around Jacksonville and has issued a mandatory curfew for the entire state of North Carolina, just to be sure.  I’m a little concerned that they may be a bit on the conservative side.