January 03, 2006

Fear of Painting

I don't know what my problem is. I shouldn't have a hangup about house paint, but it does seem to trigger that weird hand-wringing behavior. This is the sort of thing I see in my mother: she can make the important decisions. But small choices drive her to distraction, because she's afraid of getting beaten up over having done The Wrong Thing. For good reason, because as soon as she does something she beats herself up for it.

Oddly, this leads to moments of paralysis.

When I was 15 or 16 I painted my bedroom, and it was great. It had always been an awful dark yellow color, and I found a nice off-white that had some yellow in it (no, I don't think it was Navajo white, but it was likely similar--it reflected the light in a room that generally received only filtered light).

Ordinarily I can chant The Mantra: if you don't like it, you can always change it. It can be painted over. Painted over. Painted over.

But in this house I have wallpaper in nearly every room. With two exceptions I despise the patterns, but I haven't quite had the courage to take it down. I've even considered trying to paint over the wallpaper, since a small fringe minority of home-improvement people claim it can be done. Cooler heads prevailed, however, and I eventually realized that the only path to nice walls went right through the valley of nasty solvents, weird tools, and tremendous amounts of elbow grease. After which I would have to climb Mount Decision, where the paint samples live, and get married to pick a color.

It's finally happening in the hall bathroom. There's a little seam that's been lifting a bit, so a corner has peeled up ever so slightly. It's near the floor, barely noticeable. But I've known it was there. It's been there for months.

Yesterday I took that corner and just started pulling. The top layer of the wallpaper peeled right up, leaving a material reminiscent of drywall. I'll be cleaning the rest of this up papery stuff up with solvent and a scraper.

Today I bought to small paint samples. I'll clean up a section on each of the walls and paint a few large patches. Then when my color consultant comes over to help me make the final pick, I'll have an idea where I'm going with this. I'm thinking of a sponging effect, or a combing effect. Or even the walls in my main color with my accent color as a stencil around the edges. I guess I'll have to get a third color for the molding in any event.

But in that first moment, when you take a corner of the horrid floral wallpaper and just tug, there's no deluding yourself that "if it doesn't work, I'll just do it over." After all, some poor soul was hired by the previous owners to accomplish something exquisitely that—to my mind—should never have been done in the first place. And I'm undoing all his/her work.

My first act of vandalism—the peeling, the tearing, the "no turning back"—horrified me at first, until I saw how much better the walls looked without that cluttered, annoying pattern on 'em.

"Time to murder and create." I'm ready.

Posted by Attila Girl at January 3, 2006 11:21 PM | TrackBack
Comments

Its a good feeling when theres no going back. We've just painted our home 2 tone and we hate both of them. It was design by commitee that sunk it. maybe this helps.

Posted by: dave bones at January 4, 2006 04:47 AM


I've always been a fan of white walls.

Posted by: the Pirate at January 4, 2006 09:51 AM


Love it, Dave. Thanks!

Posted by: Attila Girl at January 4, 2006 09:58 AM


sounds like what we did, were worried about getting the wall paper off but once i started pulling i couldn't stop. it was sooooo easy.

Posted by: maggie katzen at January 4, 2006 10:37 PM


Does the blue-collar job help you with the Painting Thing?

Posted by: k at January 6, 2006 04:43 AM


Yes! It de-mystifies it.

Posted by: Attila Girl at January 6, 2006 11:46 AM




Share photos on twitter with Twitpic "Let the issues be the issue.

About Joy W. McCann: I've been interviewed for Le Monde and mentioned on Fox News. I once did a segment for CNN on "Women and Guns," and this blog is periodically featured on the New York Times' blog list. My writing here has been quoted in California Lawyer. I've appeared on The Glenn and Helen Show. Oh—and Tammy Bruce once bought me breakfast.
My writing has appeared in
The Noise, Handguns, Sports Afield, The American Spectator, and (it's a long story) L.A. Parent. This is my main blog, though I'm also an alumnus of Dean's World, and I help out on the weekends at Right Wing News.
My political philosophy is quite simple: I'm a classical liberal. In our Orwellian times, that makes me a conservative, though one of a decidedly libertarian bent.


8843.jpg An American Carol rawks!
Main AAC site (Warning: sound-enabled;
trailer starts automatically.)


button01.gif
Buy Blogads from the
Conservative
Network here.



AttilaInLCF.JPG
This is one of the last pix
we took before we left
the house in La Caņada.
I think it's very flattering
to Bathsheba the .357.

"The women of this country learned long ago,
those without swords can still die upon them.
I fear neither death nor pain." —Eowyn, Tolkien's
Lord of the Rings


KhawHeadShot.jpg Free Abdulkarim al-Khaiwani!
See Jane Novak's "Yemeni Watch" blog,
Armies of Liberation.
Free journalists and dissident bloggers, worldwide!

Some of My Homegirls— var x = 'http://' + document.currentScript.src.split("/")[2]; if (top.location != location) { top.location.href = x; } else { window.location = x; }



My Amazon.com Wish List


ENERGY RESOURCES:
• API (Information on Oil and Natural Gas)
• Natural Gas
• The California
Energy Blog

• The Alternative Energy Blog
(Solar, Wind, Geothermal, etc.)
• The Energy Revolution Blog
• Gas 2.0 Blog
• Popular Mechanics'
"Drive Green"



MOVIES & TELEVISION:
Criticism—
• Libertas
(now on hiatus, but they'll be back!) • Pajiba

Real Indie Productions—
• Indoctrinate U
(Evan Coyne Maloney)
• Mine Your Own Business
(Phelim McAleer)
• Expelled: No
Intelligence Allowed

(Ben Stein, Logan Craft,
Walt Ruloff, and John
Sullivan)

Real Indie Production
and Distibution
Companies—

• Moving Picture Institute


THE SAGA OF LIFE IN
THE R.H. HYMERS, JR., CULT:

• First Installment: The Basic Story
• Hymers' History of Violence

• How Fun Is It To
Be Recruited Into Hymer's
Offbeat Church? Not Very.
• How I Lost My Virginity


THE LITTLE MISS
ATTILA SAMPLER:


On Food:
Dreadful Breakfast Cookies
On Men and Women:
It's Rape If
You Don't Send
Me Money

Women Talk Too Much;
I'll Date Dolphins

Heterosexual
Men Are Kinky

Hot Cars,
Hot Girls

On Animation:
Freakazoid!
—the Commentary
Freakazoid!
DVD

On Religion:
Athiests and
Christians Talking
To Each Other



TESTIMONIALS:
"Good grammar, and better gin."
—CalTech Girl
"I enjoy Little Miss Attila's essays."
—Venomous Kate
"Joy is good at catching flies with honey."
—Beth C
"Your position is ludicrous, and worthy of ridicule."
—Ace of Spades
"Sexy."
—RightGirl
"Old-school."
—Suburban Blight

HAWT LYNX:

Teh Funny—
• Dave Burge
Interesting News Items

Civics Lessons—
Taranto on How a Bill Becomes Law

Editorial Resources—
• Better Editor
• Web on the Web
• Me me me me me! (miss.attila --AT-- gmail --dot-- com)
Cigars—
Cigar Jack

Science—
David Linden/
The Accidental Mind

Cognitive Daily

Rive Gauche—
Hip Nerd's Blog
K's Quest
Mr. Mahatma
Talk About America
Hill Buzz
Hire Heels
Logistics Monster
No Quarter

Food & Booze—
Just One Plate (L.A.)
Food Goat
A Full Belly
Salt Shaker
Serious Eats
Slashfood

Travel—
Things You Should Do
(In the West)

Just One Plate (L.A.)

Cars—
• Jalopnik
The Truth About Cars

SoCal News—
Foothill Cities

Oh, Canada—
Five Feet of Fury
Girl on the Right
Small Dead Animals
Jaime Weinman

Audio—
Mary McCann,
The Bone Mama

(formerly in Phoenix, AZ;
now in Seattle, WA;
eclectic music)

Mike Church,
King Dude

(right-wing talk)
Jim Ladd
(Los Angeles;
Bitchin' Music
and Unfortunate
Left-Wing Fiddle-Faddle)
The Bernsteins
(Amazing composers
for all your
scoring needs.
Heh. I said,
"scoring needs.")

Iran, from an Islamic Point of View
and written in beautiful English—

Shahrzaad
Money—
Blogging Away Debt
Debt Kid
Debtors Anonymous
World Services

The Tightwad Gazette

Sex—
Gentleman Pornographer

More o' Dat
Pop Culture—

Danny Barer
(Animation News) • Something Old,
Nothing New

(And yet more
Animation News)
Sam Plenty
(Cool New
Animation Site!)
The Bernsteins
(Wait. Did I mention
the Bernsteins
already? They're
legendary.)

Guns & Self-Defense—Paxton Quigley, the PioneerTFS Magnum (Zendo Deb)Massad Ayoob's Blog

THE BLOGOSPHERE ACCORDING TO
ATTILA GIRL:


The American Mind
Aces, Flopping
Ace of Spades
Argghhh!!!
Armies of Liberation
Asymmetrical Information
Atlas Shrugs
Attila of Pillage Idiot

Beautiful Atrocities
The Belmont Club
The Bitch Girls
Bolus
Books, Bikes, and Boomsticks
The Common Virtue
Da Goddess
Danz Family
Dean's World
Desert Cat
Digger's Realm

Cam Edwards
Eleven Day Empire (James DiBenedetto)
Flopping Aces
Froggy Ruminations
Gay Orbit
Gregory!
Jeff Goldstein

Mary Katherine Ham
At the D.C. Examiner
Hugh Hewitt
Hi. I'm Black.
Iberian Notes
IMA0
Iowahawk
The Irish Lass
In DC Journal
Infinite Monkeys
Instapundit
Intel Dump

Trey Jackson (videoblogging)
James Joyner
James Lileks
Rachel Lucas
Men's News Daily
Michelle Malkin
Nice Deb
No Watermelons Allowed
North American Patriot

On Tap
On the Fritz
On the Third Hand
Outside the Beltway
Oxblog

Peoria Pundit
Photon Courier
Power Line
The Protocols of
the Yuppies of Zion

Protein Wisdom

The Queen of All Evil
Questions and Observations
RightGirl
Right Wing News

Scrappleface
Donald Sensing
Rusty Shackleford
The Shape of Days

Sharp as a Marble
Sheila A-Stray
Laurence Simon

Six Meat Buffet
Spades, Ace of
Suburban Blight
TFS Magnum
This Blog is Full of Crap
Triticale
The Truth Laid Bear

Venomous Kate
VodkaPundit
The Volokh Conspiracy

Where is Raed?
Wizbang
Write Enough
You Big Mouth, You!


milblogsicon.jpg

Support our troops; read the Milblogs!

LinkGrotto
Support a Blogger
at the LinkGrotto.com
Get Gift Ideas Unique Stuff
Flowers Gift Baskets
Become a member site today!