Ramblings from the Desert

The man who trades freedom for security does not deserve nor will he ever receive either. ~Benjamin Franklin

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Location: New Mexico

Author of the urban fantasy novel, The Music of Chaos, and the paranormal romance, The Canvas Thief.

Sunday, January 15, 2006

Destruction Central

After eleven plus years of marriage, the things you first loved about your spouse may drive you insane.

For instance, I married Tim the Tool Man Taylor.

"Home Improvement," for those that weren't alive at the time, was a sit-com about a home improvement guru and his long-suffering wife. The wife would bring a leaky toilet to Tim the Tool Man's attention. A half hour later, he would have demolished the bathroom, intent on making everything more "powerful."

My husband, known in Blogland as J-Man, can build or fix anything. When we were dating, I thought this was wonderful. Then I realized that all his projects had a tendency to snowball, picking up momentum and growing more expensive by the minute.

Case in point, The Range Replacement.

Our house is tiny, a builder/developer's concession to the idea of affordable housing. Affordable housing means low income in a high income area or "There's goes the neighborhood." To accomplish "affordable," the builder relied on "cheap." The appliances probably came from a no-name manufacturer who ran the operation out of his garage.

The dishwasher, for example, took a liberal approach to clean, removing food particles from one dish and smearing them on the next. Thanks to some Christmas money, we have a new washer and next on the list is a new range.

The quest for fire has included enough research to write a PhD on gas ranges. We were circling one inexpensive model, credit card in hand when...we found a stainless steel cooktop, a closeout, for an obscenely low price.

"We don't have a place for a cooktop and a separate oven," I said.

"I know," whined the J-man. But he persisted in his fantasy and by the next week he'd decided that, instead of a range, he would add a cabinet for the cooktop and a wall oven. The fires of inspiration burned bright in his big brown eyes.

I relented because all the stainless steel ranges had shiny black tops. Who designs the bloody things by the way? Idiot men who never clean anything, apparently. Shiny black is for Sunday shoes, not stoves.

Money was exchanged and the cooktop stuffed in my car's trunk. As we were driving home, J-man suddenly straightened in the seat. The bonfire in his eyes flared to a wildfire. "I have an idea!"

"Good Lord," I said.

"We can get rid of the pantry by the door and use it for the wall oven. That way the oven will be at eye level."

I pulled a face. It was a good idea, but my 6'3" husband's idea of "eye level" is a tad different from mine at 5' something.

"And we will have the space under the cooktop for storage." He was positively giddy. It should be illegal to drive that intoxicated by creative glee.

Since then, he has decided that there will be enough room in the hole formerly known as the pantry to accommodate the microwave oven. And the nearby door will have to be re-hung so that it swings open into the garage.

"It's a good idea," I admitted. "But remember how excited your were about it when things go wrong and you start blistering the air with curse words."

I don't think he heard me. His head was filled with the sounds of the glorious demolition to come, eyes glazed with sheetrock dust.

And me, I'm off to sacrifice something fuzzy to the god of home remodeling. Bob Villa.

Happy Monday, unless you are one of those lucky bastards who got Martin Luther King Jr. Day off. In which case, a big rasberry--Pffffft! --your way.

P.K.

 

Graphics and Content Copyright © Patricia Kirby 2005