(See what I did there? Oh, aren’t you clever for noticing! Also, be sure to read the Associated Press’s guidelines for writing about the “self-described alt-right”).
When last we joined our intrepid hero, the living room had finally lost its goddamn shot-to-shit renter’s carpet (two years after buying the house, but, y’know, lack of ability and time and money), after a long journey that also saw the re-doing of the stairs, the beginnings of the landing’s closet renewal, and reworking some 50+-year-old end tables. All the furniture had been moved to the master bedroom, the kitchen, or the basement (mostly the kitchen, which was fun getting around).
Then, finally-finally-finally, we got to lay the hardwood laminate.
My wife and I watched the videos. We bought the materials. We cursed DIY as only people who don’t DIY can. We consulted friends. We got ready for the big day, Saturday, anticipating a day-long slog with probable work left over for Sunday.
And then my neighbor and his brother came over and relegated us to the Olympic Standing-There team (where we gave gold medal performances, by the way).
Two of the people who we consulted were our neighbors, nice folks who had done the same thing to their living room. We’re long-time friends (in essence, our neighbors are kinda our doppelgängers, if genders were reversed) and we asked if they could come over and help make sure we don’t do too badly.
And then, like I said, they kinda just did it for us. In, like, four hours. For people who kept saying, “We don’t have much experience”, they knocked that shit out, son, working efficiently at measuring, cutting, and laying (for those who haven’t partaken of this absolutely delightful experience, modern hardwood laminate is kinda like a jigsaw puzzle, especially to people who really hate jigsaw puzzles). Oh, my wife and I made sure the pattern continued (we had two different styles), but they made it seem stupidly easy.
And we really appreciated it. Like, totally. We don’t know what the fuck we’re doing, so having someone knowledgeable come along and say, “I’ll help you–just buy me a beer, okay?” is like manna from heaven.
We’re not done, yet, of course–I have to finish the doors to the end-tables, and we have to rehang the pictures, and my wife wants to do this thing with old drawers where you turn them into shelving–but the floor is done. The big job is done and I relearned the valuable lesson of having awesome-fuck-tastic neighbors.
I also learned the valuable lesson that DIY’ing things is bullshit. Yes, you made it yourself, but, by the end, you just wanna chuck the fucking thing into a wall.
So! To recap: neighbors are fucking awesome, DIY is fucking bullshit, and I’m slowly pulling my way through the stack of grading I’ve had to put off to get all this done (and with Christmas coming!). Whee!
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Make me and yourself feel better and pick up Bones Are Made to be Broken in either trade paperback, eBook, or deluxe hardcover–Michael Bailey and I are working on the bonus material now on that last bit. You can also add Bones to your Goodreads Want to Read shelf here: