Sunday, November 27, 2016

The Man Who Could Not Screw

single-cabinet-picture-300x375I'll bet the number of hits will go through the roof today!  LOL.

Preamble:  I grew up with a dad who could build anything.  I worked along side him  all my childhood.  And then I married Frank.   He didn't know that screwdrivers came in different types or a pliers could have a long nose. 

I have a pot rack for which Logan created a special cabinet. I had watched the handyman install the last one and realized it would be easier to install without the counter top already on.  So I  suggested Frank and I install it yesterday morning.  Oh, boy.

It comes with a short but concise video demonstration each step.  First thing it says is to measure the opening of the cabinet.  Well, even though you could plainly see the man measure the "opening", Frank disagreed with what the opening was.  Consequently, he measured what he determined to be the center and it was clearly NOT the center.  I didn't even have to measure it to see it wasn't the center.

Then we had to find the center of the rear cabinet wall.  Of course, he had a different idea of what the rear wall of the cabinet was.

The next issue was when the guy said to measure 2 1/4 inches down from the center mark on the rear cabinet wall.  You make the marks cross and that is where the bottom of the rear support gets leveled to.  Frank had made so many marks you couldn't tell which one was which.  And each mark was darker than the last because he would not just make a single line mark, he would go over it 5 or 8 times.  When the first try at the installation of the rack was sloped downward toward the back by about an inch, I looked at the marks he had been making.  It was a mess.

For some reason he couldn't get the drill to hold the bit.  He couldn't get the countersink bit to drill into the wood, The screws were either too long or too short.

 And worse yet, he couldn't hold the drill straight and the screws kept coming out the side of the wood.

We ended up with a conglomeration of a left over shelf from another cabinet, a piece of press board that had been cut out from another cabinet, 3 clamps and 25 feet of extension cord in an 18 inch cabinet.

He says, can you live with this?

I said, I am going to lunch.  You can either come with me or you can stay here and fix this mess.  If I stay here, you will die.


In the afternoon, I had another meltdown.  Between Frank's obsessions with things and workers he cannot control, trying to coordinate the intricate dance that is the house and my stomach and breathing issues I am having a hard time dealing with things.  He actually sits up at night and thinks of ways the work crew are doing things wrong and what they should do differently.  Then in the morning he gives me a list to talk to them about.  That is, when they actually show up.

The stress is getting to me physically.  And that compromises the ability to think about things.

Frank's solution yesterday was "go to Paula's and make something."

OMG!  Really?  If I go to Paula's I will move in there.

With the nights getting into the low 40s or upper 30s, I am so thankful for the sleeping bag at night.  We do have a tiny space heater that Carrie had under her desk at work.  But he only wants it to be used when someone is sitting there watching it.  So at night when I get up to make the 2 am Pee Run, I come back and sit for 15 minutes in front of the heater, then turn it off and get back into the sleeping bag.

I will wake up several times and just check to make sure the dogs are covered, because unlike the Swissys who would be reveling in the cold, these bassets are not cold weather dogs.  Except for Chloe who believes she is just a shorter Swissy!

So next week.

1.  granite guy comes on Tuesday to measure.  I need to have the sink and he gas range top available for him to measure for holes.  I don't  want frank measuring it. 

2. tile guys come to start the master bath shower.

3.  plumber comes to install the 6 foot tub.

4.  Sheetrock guys come to finish the back of the fireplace.

5.  painters come to begin work so they can ultimately paint something.

6.  cultured marble people come to measure for the guest bath surround.

7.  window guy comes to install the windows.

8.  extra trim and closet doors get delivered.

9.  guys come to hang the two back doors in den and bedroom.

10.  dishwasher and double oven get delivered and installed on Tuesday.

I hope to be really really really really busy.........and Frank will be at work.......if he makes it through today.


  1. You need to take this 'act' on the road...once your home is finished, that is!

  2. alas, I am married to the same man.

    But I love the rack !!

  3. My husband actually builds furniture and does it right, but tasks like this cause us great strife. He just doesn't visualize well. I too grew up with a mister fixit dad, so having to watch someone struggle with what seem to me to be clear cut instructions just means I leave him alone from the start. It works. If he makes a mistake I don't have to accept responsibility and if I don't like the way it looks, he pays whatever it takes to get it to a point I will accept.

  4. I should lend you my dad. He's 84 and can build, fix, and assemble anything. And he's great at giving hugs. Before he comes to visit me, he calls and asks which tools he should bring to fix whatever I might need. (A mini blind replaced, a balky toilet, a clogged sink, an electrical fixture that needs attention, whatever.) For this I make him dinner, and send him home with homemade bread. I'm telling you, he'd have you ship shape in no time.

    Your pal Sneaky Spice.

  5. Oh my! What can I say. At first I thought that was your cabinet with the pans all lined up so perfectly, but then I realized it was a stock photo. Let's hope things go better this week with workers showing up, getting things done, and Frank has to work some long hours! You are going to need a vacation after the house if finally put back together.

  6. Your stories fit perfectly with those shared by local friends who have served as their own contractors during house remodels or build-from-scratch. It is NOT easy and it IS very stressful, especially since you are living in the camper in the driveway. No easy fixes -- just know a LOT of us are pulling for you!

  7. An occasional meltdown seems perfectly okay considering how much stress you are under. And poor Frank can't seem do anything right, even if he could do it perfectly. (I tell Richard that from the get-go so he knows I'm having a bad day and can keep his distance.)

    Hang in there, it's getting closer. You'll be laughing about some of your escapades in just a few more weeks. Wouldn't it be great to be out of the camper for Christmas? Talk about a gift!


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