There is precious little left of The House That was Here, and we've just bid farewell to another piece.
I hired a contractor friend to help install a new front door, after our suitably excited two year old girl crackled one of the twelve panes of old, untempered glass on the original door upon seeing that mama had come home from work.
Children should be allowed to see as little as possible, lest they shame us with too much of their genuine satisfaction with the world. And it is further proof that being drunk just makes us act like babies: drunk people also pound on things they (we) shouldn't when they (we) get excited. Just ask Tina Turner.
Child's punishment? Watch Papa work:
Men who spend more time at this never sit Indian style, I presume because it is surpassed in inefficiency only by handing the tools over to their wives. Real men work from their knees, which are accustomed to the punishment. Mine are not. Nancy boy.
I think the word "renovate" used simply to be "revate," until people realized that asking the question "Should I ever remove that and look at what you covered up?" always came with the answer "no." Re-no-vate.
Friend: "Sometimes when you get to the bones of these old houses, the wood looks like it was cut with a chisel."
Not surprisingly, it was difficult to get anything to sit level on that. Contractor frets his way unsuccessfully through two blades on the saws-all (that's a reciprocating saw, in case the DIY Network isn't close at hand) attempting to level a hump out of that hundred year old lumber. Numb homeowner disappears to his shed and returns with a small hand plane and uses elbow grease to shave it smooth in no time. "Sometimes," I say too smugly, "you just need to unplug the power tools." The friend is not amused. But my wife seems to like it. Papa done good.
It may not be true that there are no stupid questions. I remember overhearing this brief exchange somewhere at Camp Mackall:
"No such thing as a stupid question, right Sergeant?"
"You didn't hear that one here."
"That's what I thought."
There are also no particularly bright questions. Just questions, some of which get you somewhere, and some of which do not. Aside from that I'm not sure what qualifies a question as better than another, but of course motivation means a lot. All those incestuously orchestrated "interviews" on 60 minutes and the other news shows, where big time celebrities are asked questions by even bigger celebrities, illustrate how useless sincerity has become to people with something to sell.
I had a lot of questions for my friend, because I know only that there is a thousand varieties of screw, nail, lumber, caulk, etc, and every job has a material that is right for it, with 999 that are wrong. The questions I had about which to use when and where were not, he agreed, stupid at all. They led to my new knowledge of a screw with a largely indestructible square drive. They are in the door frame, never stripped, never snapped. Having used them now, I don't know why philips head screws exist, except to keep the short-lived-philips-head-drill-bit business alive.
The hardest part of installing a door is installing the door. Everything else is cake. Hours of shims and Doritos finally got us where we needed to be.
Should the air around here ever dry up for a few days, I will have it off its hinges for to be stained upon some saw horses, and to take a sliver off the bottom, as it is too tight to the floor for proper weather stripping right now. The exterior is trimmed (not painted), and the interior needs only to be trimmed out. Surely the updates will come when I have finished.