Tuesday, August 08, 2006

The Push

My plan was to come home after work, mow the dandelions in the yard and whack the weeds growing the cracks in the sidewalk. That didn’t happen. Last night I barely kept my eyes open until 9:00 and when the alarm went off this morning it felt as if I had only slept a few hours. Things did not improve during the day.

Instead of my normal, graceful stride my feet slapped the pavement in front of me while my shoulders and back slumped over to the point that my arms hung out in front of me just a bit. With my droopy eyelids and slacked jaw it either looked like I was on drugs, or possibly had reverted back in to some proto-humanoid state. All of the coffee in the world was not going to make a difference. I had hit a wall.

This seems to happen every other month. I’m sure I’m not alone. You push yourself so hard, for so long, and eventually the body says, “No more!”. It’s funny that I don’t recall this happening too often when I was in my 20s. It must have been the steady diet of junk food and beer that kept me going.

No, instead of yard work, I got home from work and slept for two and a half hours. I then soaked in the tub for another half hour. It’s only a quarter after six now, and we easily have 2 hours of daylight left. I could be out there right now slaughtering vegetation, but then the blog would suffer. I can’t have that.

The Push I’m referring to is my plan to reach the 50% mark on the house painting by the end of August. Let’s review the map.

As you can see, when I finish Section 3 everything in green will be done. On Section 3 I only have the trim around the big stained glass window and the attic gable. Assuming I recover from my current, semi-comatose state quickly, I should be able to pound out the window trim and gable this week. If I finish all of that by Sunday that will leave me 18 days in the month of August to complete Sections 1 & 2 and I will have completed 50% of the house. Woo Hoo!

Sections 1 & 2 are small, but not without their difficulty. First, in that inside corner of Section 2 there is a large tree of some sort. I think it’s a Cypress tree. The tree is difficult to work around, as I found that out when I removed the asbestos siding. To make things more interesting the tree is chock full of spiders. I’m not sure what kind they are, but people around here call the Peanut Spiders. Their body’s look like large peanuts, and they spin webs large enough to snare a small rodent. I’m not really afraid of spiders but it does kind of freak my out when they crawl on my face, which happened a few times when I was removing the asbestos siding. This is really fun when you’re 20 feet up on a ladder.

The challenge of Section 1 is that is has the last of the bay corners with the brackets. The one I just did took me 8 days to complete start to finish. I’m not sure that this one needs to be stripped back to bare wood, though. There is a second tree in the side yard that keeps these brackets in the shade most of the time. If I can get away with a light sanding before painting that will cut 5 days off the workload for that corner. The other good thing is that there is only one window with the simple style sunbursts and none of the complex sunbursts.

It’s going to be a challenge, but I think I’m up to it. If for the next 3 weeks I subsist on coffee, frozen dinners and red wine, ignore my personal hygiene, skip a few days at work, and let the house revert back to feculent hell-hole, I think I can get it done. There is nothing like an arbitrarily set dead-line to get the old engine running at peak efficiency once again.

I love a good old-house challenge.


SmilingJudy said...

Arbitrary or not, deadlines are a good thing. Be glad you're not a female of child-bearing age. You would be stuck with a couple of those 'must slow down NOW!' days every month.

Jocelyn said...

I'm sure you'll bounce back fast. I know I always seem to much to my chagrin.

You're in deep if you're making charts :)