Friday, March 20, 2015

Construction With Cookies – Day Cookies, What Cookies?

One morning Dean noticed Angus had egg shells dangling from his tail.  He’s sometimes seen brownish bits dangling near his tail (Angus’s tail, not Dean’s) which he removes after encasing his hand in a plastic bag, but these bits were white and they were stuck on Angus’s tail so, sharp guy that he is, (Dean, not Angus, although Angus is pretty sharp for a dog) he realized right away they were egg shells and since he didn’t need any hand protection he immediately reached out to grab for them.  But Angus kept walking away from him and as Dean followed the drool dripping from his tongue (Angus’s tongue, not Dean’s) it led him to the kitchen where he found flour coating the walls and mounds of cookies falling off the counters and onto the floor.  When he stepped on the cookies, which had mixed with Angus’s slobber, he slipped and started falling so he reached out to grab my arm to save himself.  But my arm was covered in cookie dough, which wasn’t an optimal gripping surface, and as his fingers slid down my arm he slowly crumpled to the floor.  But at least it was a slow crumple so he didn’t really hurt himself.   

The good thing was the slick slobber-cookie-crumb covered floor made it easy for me to slide him out of the way with my foot so I could get to the oven to take out my 732nd pan of cookies.  Or maybe it was only 573rd.  I was losing track by then.  Once Dean pulled his greasy, crumb-covered body up from the floor he looked me square in the eyes – which I’m sure was hard for him to do since they were hidden behind the globs of butter hanging off my eyelashes – and said, enough!  Stop baking!  And he took away my spatula and my bowl and hid the cookie sheets.  And then he made me clean up all the smears of butter and hunks of dried-on egg, and wipe up the sugar, oatmeal, nuts and anything else that crunched when you stepped on it.  And that’s why I haven’t been blogging.  It’s Dean’s fault.  Because he wouldn’t let me blog until the kitchen was clean.  And it took me days and days and days. 

Or … maybe someday I’ll tell you the real reason I haven’t been blogging.  But not today.  Today I’m just going to tell you (if I can remember, that is) about the floor.

Floor day (days actually, there were three of them) we were both stressed and tense because we’d never done this before and we didn’t want to screw it up because it’s really annoying when everything else looks professionally done, mostly because it WAS professionally done, and then that one last little bit looks amateurish, mostly because it WAS done by amateurs.  We’d read the directions, watched the videos and read all the reviews that said “this is so easy my 12-year old did it”, and “it is as easy to layout and install as it sounds in the directions”, and my favorite, “…we also found it forgiving of mistakes.”  Ha! I say to those people.  HA!  YOU must have had perfectly square rooms with no door openings or TV alcoves or curvy rock walls. 

Dean got all his tools out, prepared his work area .... 

... and after a mere thirty minutes we had the first three pieces laid in the corner.

 “I think there’s too much space between the seams here,” I told Dean.  “Thank you for being such a good quality checker,” he responded.  “Please gently pull the two planks apart and re-attach them carefully.  The directions said we have ‘10-15 minutes of open time in which you can re-work the seams before any damage occurs to the adhesive on the GripStrip.’”  Actually, he really just huffed and said, “If you don’t like it, fix it.”  So I started pulling the two sticky planks apart.  I tried really hard.  And then Dean tried.  We tried so hard we broke part of the sticky edge.  Thus began the ruined planks pile.  

So much for having 10 to 15 minutes to rework the seam.  It was really more like 10-15 seconds.  They need to re-write those instructions to say get it right the first time, Bubba, or you’re screwed.  After regrouping, some deep breathing and convincing each other that we can do this! a mere hour and a half later we had that corner laid again.  After that I kept my mouth closed — mostly.

Dean was true to his methodical, meticulous, deliberate and unhurried manner.  He read about his fancy door-casing-cutting tool before he used it.  Then he thought about what he'd read.  Then he read some more.  And finally he got down to business.

He measured carefully.

He thought about what he'd measured.  He measured again.  And then he cut.

And made all the edges perfect.

Sometimes he swore. (This is the air being blue).

And then he measured again and cut again until he got it right.

I was not true to form.  I patiently waited.  I offered only a few suggestions.  I rarely spoke.  I did whatever he told me to do and hardly even questioned it. 

And then it was finished.  

And we did it all with no cookies.  Which is really sad.



doreen said...

Looks GREAT what type of flooring did you use?

Leslie said...

No cookies but it is beautiful!

Cathy said...

It was Allure resilient vinyl planks. With dogs and cats and grandkids and Dean it seemed like the best choice for the basement.

Art Elser said...

Now, Cathy, how will you recover from your addiction to baking cookies--and probably eating half of them yourself? Will you have to go the local CA (Cookies Anonymous) meetings? I hear that one of the symptoms of severe addiction is pitching ingredients all over the kitchen and then rolling in them, sometimes revealing it to others by flour and eggs shells on yourself, your pets, and sometimes your partner.

Another symptom of cookie addiction is that normally chatty Cathy personalities retire into submissive mumbling, and in really severe cases, silence. I'm sure the phone number of your local CA chapter can be found in the yellow pages. They usually meet in the basement of a bakery.

Art Elser said...
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