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No, I Didn’t
2008-03-17, 1:22 p.m.

Day 1304 No, I Didn’t

Happy St. Patrick’s day to all the real Irish and the IFaD’s (Irish for a Day). If you’re going to pick a day to be Irish, this would be it I suppose. Unfortunately, this has turned in to as much an amateurs night (or day) as New Years Eve and the reason for the celebration is lost in an alcohol fueled haze. Bummer. I’ll have a Guinness tonight and toast St. Paddy for what, driving all the snakes out of Ireland?

No, I didn’t go and call Paula and give her the “What’s up?” That’d be a bad move about. We might have an issue, but I believe it’s workable. I’m not tossing 26+ years because my spouse is having trouble kicking an addiction. Yet.

Now.

Back to that never ending list.

Fixed the disposal. It was an odd one. Managed to trace the cable, verified that yes, I ran the right cable to the right place. The hot & neutral leads all buzzed out fine. But when I closed the switch, the hot feed from the box never seemed to get to the disposal motor. Turns out I had used a 3-way switch rather than a single pole model. Simple fix. Could still use the 3-way switch, just had to wire it right.

After that, it was mud, mud, mud. Finished up all the corner bead after Thursday nights bowling disaster. Did I already whine about that? How my hand seemed swollen, couldn’t fit my ball properly, never trusted my release, yada, yada, yada? Team wise, we only took 2 of 8 points and slid back into third place. Boo hoo. At least on next years schedule we’ll have the #3 next to our team name. Much better than the #18 we have this year.

So Friday was a mud fest. Did every joint, nail & screw head in the kitchen. Splurged and bought a tool specifically for doing inside corners. Had over 100 feet of inside corners to cover. I gotta say, this new tool made doing them a breeze. Took a minute to get the hang of how and where to apply pressure, but I think this mudding job had me swearing the least of any major job I’ve tackled. There were points when, on my knees on a counter someplace, or perched precariously on a ladder, I’d actually utter some glowing comment about how nice a particular joint looked. That never happens.

But even with good mudding comes the nasty part – sanding it back down. Because I’m not one of those pros that can crank out smooth as glass joints in two passes – I need to sand. Pretty much sealed off the kitchen and went to town. Then, when the dust had settled and things were cleaned up – more mud. That sort of describes the weekend. Morning – sanding. Clean up, grab lunch. Afternoon - throw mud. Evening – clean up, dinner, plan the next day. It’s so hard to plan too. Sand, clean, mud, clean. Tough schedule.

Had a scary moment Saturday. We got this huge cabinet. 90 inches tall, 30 wide, 24 deep. We also pretty much have 92 inch ceilings. Now, if you do the math, you’ll find out that a 24 x 90 box has a diagonal of 93.15, well, really 93.145 and change, but it doesn’t matter, because you’re still screwed. I don’t have 90+ inch tall doorways. That means that cabinet has to come in horizontal, then be tipped up into place. That’s where the 93.15 inch diagonal and the 92 inch ceilings meet. I was just a little anxious about how this was going to turn out. I figured that since I was doing all the mudding & stuff, we ought to bring in the cabinet now. If I needed to cut a hole in the ceiling to create swing room, now was the time.

So Zach & I uncrated the cabinet, propped open all the house doors and hauled the cabinet in, then laid it on the floor. That is precisely when inspiration struck. Base cabinets have this thing called a toe kick, where the actual bottom of the cabinet is recessed 3 or 4 inches to make room for your feet as you stand at the counter. That little 3 or 4 inch change in dimension altered the diagonal length ever so subtly. Combine that with the fact that the designers of my house goofed when it came to supporting a bearing wall on the west side of the kitchen. This goof has created a ½ inch of sag in the floor on one end of the kitchen. This sag is on my list of things to address, but I’m not there yet. We stripped the doors off the cabinet, laid a big honking sheet of cardboard on the floor, starting near the sag. Laid the cabinet face down on the cardboard. Started to lift the cabinet, tilting it on the recessed corner. As we tilted it, I’d move the bottom in a little, Zach would keep tilting the top up. We hit the critical max diagonal and had maybe a tenth of an inch to spare. The cabinet tilted very nicely into position, with all of 2 inches of clearance to the ceiling in it’s final, vertical state.

Cindy was all – “see, I told you you were fretting over nothing. There was no need to hack a hole in the ceiling!” While true – we got extremely lucky. If it hadn’t been for that bit of sag in the floor, the ceiling would have been sacrificed. Well, a small part of it.

Finished working late yesterday afternoon. Cleaned up, had dinner (corned beef simmering in the crock pot all day) went to watch Zach’s roller hockey game. Z man had a very nice assist and a goal, but his team ultimately lost the championship. Bad third period killed them.

Got home and you know what I smelled? Joint compound. Couldn’t shake the smell. Cindy stuck some pine-scented candle in my nose (unlit, thank you), and I still could only smell joint compound. I think that in spite of using a mask, I have that flippin drywall dust impregnated in my sinuses.

Had another moment of fretting over very little this weekend. Seemed to loom large at the time, but . . . Anyhow. Yesterday morning, as I’m zipping back & forth trying to get ready for the big dust creation project, I spied Cindy’s purse on the downstairs landing, laying there sorta half open. That in itself isn’t unusual. Kitchen parts occupy all the normal resting places for her purse, so the bottom of the stairs was the next open area. What struck me as odd was that at 10:30 in the morning, she had a bottle of Ginger Ale in her purse. Ginger Ale is the mixer of choice for her particular variety of self-medication. So I spent the rest of the day keeping one eye on that bottle every time I passed by the foot of the stairs. Nothing much happened to it all day till later in the afternoon it got moved to the bag (attaché, portfolio, what ever) Cindy uses for work.

After dinner as we’re cleaning up, Cindy offers to finish up with the dishes while The Bob and I head off to Zach’s game. Aha! I knew it. She was planning on staying home, doing her ‘cleaning’ while also doing her level best to use up that bottle of Ginger Ale. So I went to Zach’s game and then dropped The Bob off at his swinging bachelor pad. Headed home fully expecting to find Cindy in some state of inebriation. But really, how much damage could she do in the 2 hours I was gone?

As it turns out – none. There I was, already angry about the condition I expected to find her in, and she was fine when I got home. Maybe a little too chatty, but really, nothing I could label as under the influence. After Thursday night, I was surprised. Took me a while to come down from my misplaced anger. I think I kept it bottled in well enough that she probably didn’t pick up on it. At least I like to think I’m getting batter at that. Still have to burst her bubble about how she isn’t really hiding her drinking very well. Hope it doesn’t inspire her to try harder at hiding it. Way back when we started this counseling business, my one deal breaker was Cindy drinking. My reference was to her drinking like she was the first 8 months of 2007 and prior to that. I am scared shitless that any drinking will eventually lead to that again. Cindy thinks she can return to social drinking. Heh. She never drank socially – always with a purpose. It’s high time I communicated my fears. If I leave it in those terms . . .

I have to inspect coat # 3 of the mud tonight. I also need to keep in mind that roughly 90% of the walls will be covered by cabinets and/or tiling. The only drywall I need to be totally anal about is the ceiling – and thankfully that doesn’t look too bad. Need to be putting on primer paint by Wednesday. Finish paint Friday. Saturday? Cabinet install. Yes, there will be pictures. Got my tripod out too, so I may even make an appearance.

Thursday we need to call the countertop place and schedule their measuring visit. Things are starting to gell. (For the record, that one cabinet we brought in is huge. I knew the dimensional numbers were big, but seeing it? Wow.)



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