Tuesday, April 25, 2006

"This isn't the stupidest thing we've ever done..."

My husband works for a big beverage company. Big. Multinational. Australian for 'beer'. Dozens of large wineries in the U.S. and Australia, and at least a couple of breweries. As a result, we've acquired a lot of wine over the past year. Rather than drinking all of the wine immediately after purchase, which was my plan, he decided that we should look into carefully storing it in a large wine refrigerator. I'm told that at the size we're installing, such a unit is called a wine cellar. Anyway, drinking our way through the cases in the dining room was ruled out. Killjoy.

We have a long history of stupidity when it comes to home improvement. We staple up insulation at 2:00 a.m. We try not to disturb the neighbors with the chop saw, so we set it up in the tiny hallway outside of our bedroom, where the saw dust and smoke from the blade will set off the smoke detector. We save landscaping dollars by trenching the hard-pan in our back yard ourselves with a gas powered trencher, breaking my finger in the process, but not stopping us from working. "Huh. I don't remember it hurting yesterday. Maybe it's arthritis. Where's the shovel?" Our friends often say, "You guys are f*&king nuts!" They also often say, "Hey, maybe you guys should get out of the house. How are the fumes not KILLING you?!?"

So it was no surprise yesterday at 8:00 p.m. when my beloved Accountant Boy said, "You know what we should do before the cellar shows up tomorrow? We should texture and paint that wall in the garage so that it looks nice." I wanted to sit down and watch television, maybe work on the back of Bristow for a little while, after having to frog all of it the night before. I could have said just said no, but it would have broken his heart, so I went along with it, because I love the big guy.

At 8:30, we started spraying on the texture. "This isn't the stupidest thing we've ever done," he said to me, in a tone that seemed to beg for agreement. "No, honey, it's a good idea!" I chirped back at him.

At 8:34, we realized that we were spraying aerosolized chemicals on the wall, without respirators or adequate ventilation. He threw open the garage door so that we could breathe, and the neighbors could watch us do more nighttime home improvements. "O.K., maybe that was a little stupid, but still not the stupidest thing we've ever done." "No, honey, it'd only be stupid if we were found dead on the garage floor tomorrow. Good call on the open window!"

By 9:15, the spray texture was dry. We rolled on a coat of paint, and lo and behold, it DID look pretty good. By 10:30, we were done with both coats. And it does look nice, I'll give him that. We're going to be happy with the pretty, khaki wall behind the wooden cellar. It wasn't the stupidest thing we've ever done.

But it did keep me from knitting. I really wanted to get back on the horse after falling off so hard on Sunday. Look at this beautiful, even work. See how lovely the yarn works up at this gauge, somewhere in the 22st/4in range...oh, damn. Bristow's 19st/4in. The front that's half completed in my basket is 19st/4in. Not only did I have to frog all of this work, but I now have to figure out what I was doing to get the bigger gauge on these needles. Bye-bye, sweater back. I miss you already.

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