February 11, 2005

My Unofficial Decorator

. . . came by today. Fortunately (and, unfortunately, for my blogging endeavors and my sleep life) he had tons of ideas, many of which will require little or no money to be implemented.

Consequently, I'm on the hot seat again. I have a bunch of actions that need to be taken over the next several days. Some of them may even require me to change out of my bathrobe, which I hate.

The husband and I still don't know whether we will be able to hang onto the house, so it isn't clear whether we're fixing it up to enjoy or to sell. But for most purposes it doesn't matter: a lot of the actions are going to be the same.

In the meantime, I guess I'll tidy things up. After I have a nap.

It occurs to me that I come from a family that believes in making omelettes without breaking eggs. We are supposed to accomplish great things, but without using any resources whatsoever. And without letting go of anything, even the ugly valances over the drapes in the living room.

Two generations later, the Great Depression is still inside my family's psychic body, like a cancer. We should all get together for some kind of mass chemotherapy.

"I'm afraid of color for the wall," I tell my paint-specialist friend. "What if I'm wrong?" (Keep in mind that one of my sidelines is designing business cards, ads and brochures for businesses, so I'm fine with colored ink.)

"If you're wrong, you re-paint the wall," he replies.

No, no, no. In my family, if you do something wrong, you don't correct it. You can't correct it. That's $40 worth of paint that's gone forever.

No wonder we never finish anything. No completion means less self-flagellation.

Gotta go now: first the nap. Then I shoot my parents. Later, I tear down the valances.

Posted by Attila at February 11, 2005 12:00 PM

OOPS! I posted a paint post in your cleaning post!

Posted by: k at February 11, 2005 02:32 PM

Read "Who Moved My Cheese" by Spencer Johnson, MD. It is the chemotherapy you spoke of.

Time and again, I have seen this tiny book help people adapt to change in huge ways.

Change is Constant. Thoughtful change is almost always good.
All progress iS Change.

I said that - not Spencer Johnson

Posted by: Ironcross11 at February 11, 2005 02:33 PM

I highly recommend "oops" paint at Home Depot. It works best if you haunt home improvement stores on a regular basis. When people mix a color and decide they don't like it after all, they'll return it for a refund. Home Depot here resells it for $5/gallon, $1/qt., $15/5 gals. Or less. Much of this was $30/gal. originally. Four cans saves $100. That's two cleaning jobs in cost savings.

We've saved several thousand dollars this way. Interior, exterior, trim, stains, sealers, concrete coating, etc. etc.

Best of all: Since I'm a "white paint" person too, you'd think I'd never find anything there for me. Wrong! A lot of it was never colored at all. Or even opened! It's dented cans and discountinued lines.

I have that same Depression-era syndrome. Using oops paint makes it OK to do it over.


Posted by: k at February 11, 2005 02:39 PM

I have no Depression in my ancestral line (too recently immigrated), but this

"No wonder we never finish anything. No completion means less self-flagellation."

sounds like why I hate turning in work. No completion means that it's never permanently imperfect.

Posted by: PG at February 12, 2005 11:05 AM

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