Sunday, June 10, 2007

Lazy Ways on a Lazy Day

Revenge is sweet! What goes around comes around!

Those adages could be used to describe my day, this pleasant Sunday. A better one, however, would be ...

"The best laid plans of mice and men..."

The plan: To spend a lazy day in a lazy way. In other words - do nothing!

Truth: (1) A rope broke in back hall window, (2) screen in back door torn, (3) bedroom TV has no sound - and (4) to be cited later.

Result: No lazy day and no lazy ways.

The following presupposes that one has the necessary supplies (sash rope, extra screening, etc.) on hand and does not have to make a trip to the local hardware store. It also makes the assumption that one has the knowledge and skills to perform the following tasks.

1. Yes, I have the old windows! You have to remove sash frames and pull the window out. Then you have to remove panel and pull out the window counter weight and remove the rope from the weight and from the pulley. Next you have to measure a piece of new sash rope. Then you have feed the new rope down the pulley and hope the end doesn't get snagged inside. It did! Finally, you tie the rope to weight and put everything back together. Hopefully, the window moves easily up and down. Whew, it did!

( Oh, I forgot a few minor details - - Before taking a window apart, there are a few delicate preparations that must be carefully observed if one is married or if one has to answer to a significant other : (a) you have to remove curtains or any other window treatments and they must be carefully placed someplace as to prevent them from being soiled and perish the thought, wrinkled; (b) you have to remove window shades and/or mini blinds; and (c) sometimes you have to remove hardware for shades and/or mini blinds in order to remove sash panel - and do so without dropping or losing screws. Yes, I had to observe preparation c.

I would be remiss if I didn't mention, that once the window has been prepared, preparations a,b, and c must be exercised again, but this time, in reverse order. )

I find it amazing that no matter how much care the male of the species takes in putting curtains and rod back onto the hooks, it has not been done properly in the eyes of a wife or a significant other.

Elapsed time: 1 hour 45 minutes

2. Repairing screens can be a lot of fun - not. Removing the old screen is the easy part and can usually be accomplished with little or no use of expletives. ( When putting in the new screening, however, one can disregard the previous sentence. ) Measuring the amount of screen, I made sure the new piece was about a quarter of an inch larger all around. Most screening today is held in place by a length of a stretchable rubber piping. One needs to Keep the screen in place to prevent it from shifting. (I have found that a series of strong magnets placed over the edges of the screening and the metal surface of the door works quite well.) Placing the rubber piping over the screen and above a channel in the frame, I slowly stretched and pushed the piping into the channel. I used the business end of a flat screwdriver to accomplish this. This process was continued inch by inch around all four sides of the screen frame. You need to keep stretching the piping and poking it into the channel and all the while making sure the screening is staying as taut as possible. It came out okay. Mission accomplished!

Elapsed time: 2 hours 15 minutes

3. I am no electronics whiz. Satisfied that there was nothing wrong with the remote and the cable connections, I determined that the problem was with the TV set itself. I do turn to alternative, if only temporary, fixes for these kinds of problems. This problem had an easy ( or so I thought ) solution. All I had to was to swap the bedroom TV with another seldom used TV located in another room. This solution allows for a quick fix until we can shop for a replacement when the disposable funds so permit.

When disconnecting and subsequently reconnecting TV sets when there are cable and accessories such as VCRs and DVD players involved, one must pay close attention to where the spaghetti-like mass of wires and cables connect. ( Alas, it is more complicated than ... the toe bone is connected to the foot bone ...) With the first set disconnected I lugged it to the other room where its substitute lived. After disconnecting the substitute, I lugged it to the bedroom. After locating, identifying and connecting the various wires and cables, the job was complete. Well, not quite!
The second TV didn't work - that is to say it wouldn't power up! I couldn't turn it on! Yep, I fixed it all right.

So instead of a TV with no sound, there was now a TV with no sound and no picture! I was glad I had saved the easy task for last! I was faced with three options: 1) return the first TV to the bedroom ( at least we could watch it and practice a new skill like reading lips ); 2) leave it the way it was and think of some other form of bedroom entertainment ( an idea that at least one of us found acceptable; which gives the reader a 50-50 chance of guessing which party thought otherwise ); or 3) go to sleep and/or find something to read. It should be noted that the third option works better if supplemented with a cold shower.

Elapsed time: 3 Hours 20 minutes

It should be noted that the elapsed times cited for these tasks include unspecified intervals of breaks for coffee, cigarettes, certain bodily functions, and several bouts of exercising the use of the aforementioned outporing of expletives (which have been deleted solely for the purpose of respect to the reader).

4. The notorious task to be cited later, is one that one doesn't know about when the other tasks were being performed. Knowledge of said task isn't known or revealed until one has cleaned up and settled like a bird in its nest into one's recliner in the living room with remote in hand - just in time for the start of the baseball game.

One's wife or significant other who has been inconspicuously absent ( although it was noticed how quiet it had been ) suddenly pulls into the driveway from a trip to the supermarket. The retort of her car's horn doesn't mean that she is necessarily announcing her arrival. Over the years one learns the inflections of car horns. This horn wasn't saying "hello." It said, "Get off your keester and get out here and lug in all these bags of groceries filled with stuff we didn't really need but were on sale."

That, my friends, was my lazy way to spend a lazy Sunday. How was your Sunday?

Planning a backyard BBQ soon? Why not check out how my buddy Blue throws a BBQ at his Patio Party.



Peter said...

It's real nice to know that you graduated from the same school that I did Mike, I don't remember being taught how to stuff things up... but I couldn't have got this good at it without tuition.

Hale McKay said...

So true, Peter. When you're a home owner you learn fairly quickly how to do things when the alternative is to shovel out exorbiant payouts to carpenters, painters, plumbers, electricians, etc,.