Tuesday, September 05, 2006

If I Had a Hammer - Part 2


The continuing adventures of Kristie and Lisa - Bookshelf Builders

By the time Kristie and Lisa made it back to Kristie’s it was almost 3:30 and it was getting close to feeding time again. There was one thing that had made Kristie’s day though. When she opened the back door of the car to put in her purchases, she spied her prescription sunglasses that had been missing for months. There they were, just sitting on the floor on the back. She was so pleased to find them, she put them on, even though it was raining very hard. They somehow made the day seem even gloomier, but she didn’t care!

They had missed lunch due to their travels, but they decided that since it was the day to start the bookshelves, they should at least make an attempt at building them first. Lisa had suggested earlier in the week that a power drill might be helpful in getting the screws into the wood. Kristie had looked at the workbench in dismay, not knowing where to begin as she really had no idea what one looked like. When she was telling her son Brent earlier about the project they had planned and that she wanted a power drill, and once Brent had stopped laughing and laughing and laughing, he said he had three of them and would bring them by.

Kristie had called Brent early in the day before Lisa had arrived to see if Brent could bring them over. Unfortunately she only got his answering machine and so left her message. At their first stop at the house in between visits to lumber stores, Brent had left a rather irate message on the phone. He was annoyed that Kristie had called so early in the morning and he was busy that day so did she really still need it. Kristie shook her head at the message rather annoyed herself. Brent later called back and Kristie was home briefly in between visits. This was when she had discovered the originally planned brackets wouldn’t work. Kristie said that yes, she did need the power drill and Brent reluctantly showed up sans power drill. He went and looked at the work bench and there was indeed a power drill on the bench but it needed a chuck. “What the hell is a chuck?” Kristie wondered. This wasn’t surprising as she didn’t even know what a drill was. Fortunately it was reasoned that they could get by without one for now. Brent left after shaking his head at the planned project. It should be noted that Brent needed Lisa’s help in figuring out how to put air in the tire of his car. The apple apparently doesn’t fall far from the tree.

So, with all the paraphernalia needed, Kristie and Lisa were ready to begin. Kristie had been hoping that Lisa measured wrong and the 46” bracket holder wouldn’t be too long, even though she had purchased a hack saw, but no, Lisa had measured correctly and they would have to do some metal cutting. They found a sturdy surface and Lisa began cutting. Back and forth, quicker and quicker went the saw until low and behold, the extra length came off. Lisa then started on the next piece. When it was finished they looked at each other in satisfaction. They were reading to screw the brackets into the wood which was spaced perpendicular every couple of feet around the stucco covered walls. Kristie idly wondered why the wood wasn’t evenly spaced, it would have made things easier when purchasing the lumber, but as the former owners of the house had done it, it was idle speculation. Working together, Lisa and Kristie carefully measured so things would line up and began to each place a screw in the centre. Then Lisa got out the power drill for the next screws. She turned it on, loaded the screw and zip, quicker than a flash the screw was in the wood. Kristie looked on in amazement. “Power tool”, Lisa replied succinctly. Kristie thought that maybe men were really onto to something and had to try this for herself. She loaded the screw, turned on the power tool and zip, in went the screw. “Kewl” she thought. They finished screwing the brackets on, counted the slots on each one and added the holders. Then they carefully set their first piece of lumber on the brackets. They were even. The wood shelf was level. They grinned at each other and looked back at the first shelf. Then they took a closer look. The bracket stuck out considerably over the shelf. Lisa picked up another bracket and looked closer. The bracket was 8” wide and the shelf was 6” wide. Why hadn’t they considered that? They realized with dismay it would mean another trip back to Home Depot. But since neither of them felt like making a fifth visit that day, they decided to go ahead and finish putting up the bracket holder anyway along with the brackets, just to see how it would look.

Lisa picked up the next metal bracket holder, set it on the work space, picked up the hack saw and handed it to Kristie. Kristie looked at her in horror. “Your turn,” Lisa nodded encouragingly. Kristie kept looking at her in horror. Kristie, you see, doesn’t even like changing light bulbs. The thought of actually using a saw to cut a piece of metal terrified her. She imagined slicing off a finger if the metal slipped. The carpet is red, but still the blood would be a real bitch to get out. And how would she type if part of her finger were cut off? And even little paper cuts hurt like the dickens – imagine a cutting off the whole finger! Kristie has been known at times to have a wee bit of an overactive imagination. And Lisa has called her a *air quote* darama queen *air quote* a description Kristie laughs at but admits might have a ring of truth. But finally Kristie put aside her fears and gingerly picked up the hacksaw and prepared to saw. She wasn’t nearly as good at it as Lisa though and sawed a bit on the slow side, being careful to keep her fingers well back. Lisa finally took over the sawing and Kristie drew a silent breath of relief. They got the next bracket holder and gleefully arranged some books on the shelf so they could see what it would look like. In the immortal words of Billy Crystal who spoofs the immortal words of Ricardo Montabaln – it looked marvelous!! Simply marvelous. Amazingly enough by this time it was roughly 4:30. Six and a half hours to get the shelving material and one hour to put it up.

Of course Kristie had to be held back from going up and start alphabetizing. That would have been useless though since the sample books were across the alphabet and they had started in the middle. Still, she had a very hard time seeing one Karen Ranney book on one shelf, another one further over on a different shelf and still two more on the next section.

So, they decided that during the next week Kristie would get the rest of the building materials they needed and they would finish next Saturday.

At this point in the story I was hoping to have pictures. I asked to borrow Ryan’s digital camera which he was quite happy to bring over on Sunday. But – he neglected to bring over the cord so I could connect the camera to the computer and download the pictures. It’s that apple and tree thing again. Hopefully I should have some shortly.

'til later


Anonymous said...

Kristie....you have made my day. ** GRIN
Girl - you must write a book. I'll be waiting to see the next chapter of "IF I Had a Hammer".

Nicole said...

Aww...thanks for making me smile!

Rosie said...

Lordy...I can't wait to see the pictures!!