The Doors

November 12th, 2006 § 1 comment § permalink

Is is weird that a freshly painted door turns me on?

This weekend was all about doors. Specifically the two doors that open off the upstairs hallway. They were looking pretty rough now that the hall is finished so Dad and I decided to do something about it.

The first one, from my bedroom (also pictured above) had about 5 layers of paint. The top 4 were ok but the fifth layer down was a pain in the neck. I’m not sure what it was… maybe someone out there knows. It was green, and when heated with the heat gun, it turned into a gooey paste. It had the consistency of toothpaste residue. Imagine leaving a goober of toothpaste on the sink for a month and then trying to rub it off with your finger.

Anyways, we dealt with the green goo, sanded our fingers to the bone, and then promptly reapplied paint.

It seems I’m a little anal retentive when it come to finish coating items in this house. My customary approach for painting is:

1) Prepare the surface as best I can.
2) Apply a coat of primer.
3) Once the primer dries, I patch any areas I missed earlier that the coat of primer highlighted, caulk any joints, and then give the whole thing a light sanding.
4) Wipe with tack cloth.
5) Second coat of primer.
6) Light sand and wipe with tack cloth.
7) First coat of paint.
8) Touch up if needed.
9) Second coat of paint.

People often wonder why it takes me so long to paint anything. I think the previous list explains it. It is for that reason that I will never be a professional painter. My rates would be off the charts.

The door to PB1 was also stripped and sanded on one side this weekend.

On Friday night I thought I would relax by cleaning the lockset for my bedroom door. It didn’t work properly for a couple reasons. Firstly, the face was painted and therefore the bolt wouldn’t move, and the second reason can be seen in the following picture:

Those of you with keen eyes will notice a couple of things. Cottonelle toliet paper is on sale this week for $8.99 / 24 and there are some foreign objects inside the lockset. I have inventoried them for posterity and for your reading pleaseure:

  • 2 buttons
  • 1/2 of a plastic cocktail sword (green, just below the buttons)
  • 1 piece of spaghetti (below the sword)
  • 1 piece of macaroni (below the spaghetti), and
  • a piece of shrivelled up elastic (to the right of the macaroni)

All in all, a weekend well spent. It’s not glamorous work but some one has to do it.

The Stove Is Gone

November 11th, 2006 § 1 comment § permalink

The gas stove that was in the summer kitchen has finally been sold. Since the summer kitchen was torn down in the summer of 2005 it has been sitting in my side porch.

I probably could have sold it sooner, but truth be told, I forgot about it. I don’t know how you can forget about something that you walk right past at least twice a day but I did.

In October I put an ad in the paper and got a few calls about it. By the following week I had sold it to one of my old french teachers for $350. It was worth more than that but I was anxious to get rid of it so I had a sale. She said she would pick it up before the end of the month and she would give me the cash at that time. Fair enough.

The end of the month came and I still had a stove and no cash. Sad Woody! My old teacher came over one night to tell me that she wasn’t going to buy the stove after all.


Woody went from fairly happy to pissed off in about 2 seconds. I was so mad that I placed an ad in the paper that night and also put an ad on craigslist. I bumped the price to $500, just because I was mad, and I figured I needed to be compensated for my bad mood.

It turns out that the colder the weather, the more people are willing to pay for heat. It’s the rule of supply and demand. I sold the stove 3 days after relisting it for the full asking price. The dude picked it up yesterday and handed me a fat wad of cash. Happy Woody!

As I’m writing this post there is a message on my answering machine from the dude who bought the stove. He wants me to call him back. I don’t want to. My involvment with the stove ended when he handed me the money. I don’t have anything I want to talk to him about but I suppose I’ll have to talk to him sooner or later.

Does anybody have any guesses as to what he wants? I can’t see how it can be good.

The Other "Woman"

November 4th, 2006 § Comments Off on The Other "Woman" § permalink

I’ve recently joined a community of lunatics like me. Please check out the website for

After reading some posts of other renovation themed blogs I noticed that many people refer to their houses with a gender, usually female.

This got me thinking about my house. Which gender is it and what kind of relationship do I have with it?

I don’t even have to think about the gender. Female. Definitely female. Not a doubt in my mind that she’s a she. (Moody, complicated, irrational… I’ll stop there.)

Now the relationship… This is the difficult part because I’m not exactly sure where we stand with each other.

My end is simple. I love her.

I have ever since I first saw her. There are things that happen in life that you just can’t explain, like falling in love with the homeliest house in town. She’s saggy in some places, cracked and wrinkled in others, and she creaks and groans when the weather changes. She has gas, sometimes smells funny, she’s incontinent and unapologetic for it. I often wonder what others say about us: “What’s he doing wasting his time with her?” , “What does he see in her?”

I’ll tell you what I see in her: What she lacks in looks, she makes up for in personality, and what she lacks in personality, she makes up for with her sense of humour. Some parts of her are just plain ugly, the kitchen for instance. No sane person would marry himself to a house with that kitchen, but I have. It has personality. It has the has a six foot cast iron tub in the kitchen. Now that’s personality. If that’s not personality enough for you, there’s always the sense of humour. She has a door that opens up to a brick wall. I don’t care who you are, that’s just plain hilarious.

I’m committed to her. I come home to her every night. I spend all my spare time sanding, scraping, painting, repairing and improving her. I spend all my spare money on her. She keeps me up late, gets me up early, and keeps me from seeing my friends. Some times she can really piss me off but I will never let her down.

Now how does she view her relationship with me?

She’s a mute (not deaf though… the walls have ears!) so she can’t tell me directly what she thinks but the good news is that she’s been teaching me sign language. For instance, when she stubs my toe, or refuses to start the furnace, or insists that the porch door will never latch properly I know she is trying to tell me that she needs more attention. I also know that when she does everything possible to hinder my progress she probably needs some time to herself.

In the end I think she loves me back. She’s been in some pretty difficult relationships over the years so it’s understandable if she’s a little slow in showing her true feelings. She lets me spend the night all the time, she’s taken to greeting me in the morning with a warm bathroom floor, and she even lets me paint her in the colours I like. She may be a little cold at first but once you get to know her, you’ll like her.

What does the future hold for us? Where do we go from here?

I think we will have a long and happy life together. There will be times when she’ll get mad at some bone-headed thing I’ve done and drop a chunk of plaster on my head. There’ll be other times when I’ve had it with her hiding surprises under her layers of wallpaper that I’ll say things to her that I shouldn’t.

We’ll be fine though. We both know that the other didn’t really mean it, that we’re both in for the long haul, and that at the end of the day we’re both on the same side.

That’s enough soul-searching for now. Somewhere there’s some paint that needs to be stripped.

In the next episode of “Woody’s Psychiatric Couch” we’ll attempt to name her.

Bathroom Done

November 4th, 2006 § Comments Off on Bathroom Done § permalink

There! Done! Stop asking.

Where am I?

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