Sunday, July 15, 2007

This life is going to be all about the dangling possibilities...

After saying in my last post that, new job aside, I'd try to keep up my regular blogging pace, I dropped off the face of the earth for the next five days. Talk about empty promises (maybe I do have a future in politics).

If it's any consolation, not only have I neglected the blog, I haven't returned an email or phone call or done much of anything over the past nine days but paint (and putty and caulk and sand and similar nonsense). I did make a couple exceptions: a midnight showing of Harry Potter on Tuesday, a friend's 30th birthday party, half a day at the county office building getting the deck permit (work starts this week!) and a couple bike rides. But for the most part, I got up in the morning, worked until it got dark and ran to Home Depot(s) at night.

It was glorious.

Some people go on vacations to exotic (or not) place or retreats to monasteries to clear their minds. Me, I work on houses. Indeed, the last time I left a job I really liked for an opportunity stuffed with uncertainty, I spent two weeks repairing a beat-up rental property for a landlord who personified all the bad connotations associated with "absentee." At least this time the house is mine (and there aren't any fleas to speak of).

While I've done more than my share of painting, I've never actually painted a house. So, I had no idea what I was getting into. And as much as I think I should have finished the job during my week off, I'm content with what I accomplished, especially considering the amount of work required to prep the house and the quality of the previous paint job (a neighbor mentioned that the last owner to paint the house bragged that he finished the job in just 13 hours -- it showed).

Anyway, as proof that I haven't been just lounging around playing Wii, here are a couple shots of the house. Note the remaining work for next weekend and the new shed in the "after" shot.

Thanks to my dad for helping out on Friday and all my neighbors who stopped by to offer advice (some good, some less so) or words of encouragement.

More later.

Until then, an advertisement for an great event this week:

at the Columbia Foundation invites you to join us at

"Give to Greet"
a benefit for the Domestic Violence Center (DVC) of Howard County

Wednesday, July 18, 2007
5:30-7:00 pm

Domestic Violence Center- 5457 Twin Knolls Road, Suite 310-Columbia, 21045

A donation to the DVC "Wish List" is required for admittance.
Light hors d'oeuvres and beverages provided.


RSVP: 410.730.7840 or


Miyagi said...

when you are done painting the house,

you should paint your fence,

then wash the cars,

and then sand the deck.

Then, and only then, will you be ready to take on Johnny and the others at Cobra Kai.

mamagoots said...

AHA! Wax on, wax off ...

Anonymous said...

Two weeks after taking on what I initially thought was a few hours of painting trim on my house, I faced pain-filled expense and nearly zeroed out my vacation balance at the office.

But I got a few really good stories, like the one (from the hardware store personnel) about the guy who tied one end of a rope to his car, and tied the other end to his waist, climbed up on the roof to paint the other side of the house trim at just about the time his wife thought she'd run out and pick up a few things - in the car.

He survived (though had a stint in the hospital). Even more miraculously, the marriage survived.

My own experience was precarious but involved bats rather than spouses. I had to purchase a light-weight aluminum ladder to reach the peaks of the house 40' up, and had to stand on the second to the top rung and reach as far as possible to get to the peak. As I was doing this at dusk, I was also holding onto the attic vent and felt something fuzzy which, in itself was not alarming. But it was also warm. My sister was holding the ladder to keep it from slipping on the bricks below and told me that I probably had my hands on bats, and should quit for the day before they rushed out (at dusk), knocking me off the ladder.

I have too many stories like this. That's enough for now.