Friday, October 19, 2012

"You Don't Want to Know Why I Need the Staple Gun": Part 3 of Bathroom Repainting

Today, I tried to put all thoughts of spackle behind me and get a-painting!  The only problem was that I did not get the absolute earliest start I could have because... I slept in until 11 a.m.  And then I had to eat a bowl of cereal and post on the ol' blog, since I have to entertain all you beautiful people with my spackle-related travails.  And then I remembered my paint pants were still in the washing machine after I had washed them last night to get the EVIL DUST out.

My paint pants.  About what you'd expect.
So by the time I started taping the edges of the ceiling and the door and the cabinets, it was about 1 p.m.  I got out the blue tape and started taping.  I actually kind of liked how all the edges looked all blue; it made our boring bathroom look sort of interesting!

Taping itself is pretty boring, though.  First, I called Husband to say hi.  Our phone conversations when he is at work generally go the way they would if I were a puppy who had learned how to talk and use an iPhone:

Liz:  Hi!  Hi!  Hi!  How are you?
Husband:  I'm at work.
Liz:  I know!  What are you doing?  Did you eat lunch yet?  When are you coming home?
Husband:  I have to go to a meeting now.  I'll talk to you later, okay?
Liz:  Okay!  You should come home soon!

It was approximately 1:30 p.m.  

I taped a little more and then realized taping would be so much better with music.  I tried to plug in my iPhone to the stereo and could not figure out how to make it turn on.  I've done it before, but the screen on the stereo is broken so it's hard to tell: 1) whether it is on or off; 2) what input it is currently set on; 3) if it is on mute or not; 4) really anything that might help you play music on it.  

[Aside:  Ironically, Husband's car has the same problem: the display on the stereo is broken so you can't see what radio station you are on or anything.  You just have to keep searching around until you find something decent.  This is ironic because Husband is an engineer who can fix pretty much anything: he's fixed my car in about 9 different ways, he is rebuilding an old car, and it is family lore that even as a child, he used to take apart various home electronics and put them back together to the bafflement of his non-technically-inclined parents.  Apparently stereo displays are his kryptonite?]

I couldn't get the stereo to do anything or in any way indicate that it was involved in the making of sounds.  So I called Husband again, who said he didn't really know how to do it either and I would just have to fiddle with it.  That didn't work, so I got out the tiny little portable speakers and brought them into the bathroom with me.  And then I listened to some Carly Rae and T.Swift for awhile and kept taping.

And then I noticed that the rubber toekick molding (on the wall by the floor) was coming loose from the wall at one place in a way that paint would not effectively cover.  I have been trying to ignore a lot of the problems I have noticed during this project - the problem with looking for flaws to fix is apparently that you find way more than are fixable - but this one was ticking me off.  So I decided to try to glue it back to the wall using the only glue I could find: Mod Podge and a tiny piece of sponge.

If you are looking at that picture and saying, "Girl, that is NOT HAPPENING," well, I am compelled to agree.  It did not work at all.  So I started thinking and the thought came to me:  staple gun.  Staple guns can affix anything to anything.  So I tried to think where the staple gun was but couldn't find it on the work bench.

I called Husband again, and as the phone was ringing I was mentally planning out the conversation: 

Husband:  Why do you need the staple gun?
Liz:  Don't ask questions you don't want to know the answer to.

... but Husband had developed the good sense to stop answering my phone calls and didn't pick up.  So I hunted around some more using the light app on my iPhone and voila!  I found the staple gun, along with a bunch of types of glue that would have worked way better than Mod Podge.  But by this point I was in staple mode.

I went in, positioned the staple gun perfectly, and ka-chunk.  I moved the gun and looked and there was no staple.  Confused, I wondered if it was out of staples and tried stapling at nothing, but a staple fell out so that wasn't it.  I positioned it again and ka-chunk... and no staple.

My inner voice started screaming "What witchcraft is this?" and that was the moment.  The moment when I became crazy desperate redecorating lady who is a total wreck and will most likely end up destroying her house rather than improving it.  This photo that I accidentally took effectively expresses my feelings at the moment:

And then I realized.  I had been positioning the staple gun upside down so I had actually just stapled into the wall twice.

I was, to use a fine expression, wigging out.  All my wigs were just everywhere.  I ran to the garage and grabbed a tiny pair of pliers and desperately yanked on the staples in the wall, which wouldn't come out because the pliers kept slipping off.  I kept at it and finally, finally, managed to remove both staples and staple the stupid stupid rubber thingy properly.  And that paint had better cover those staples but if I doesn't I don't even care.

You can see them just above the blue tape in the middle.
To calm down, I listened to Good Time three or four more times.  And then put on my C.Rae.Jep Pandora station for awhile.  Until my stupid little speakers ran out of battery, leaving me stupidly confused as to why the music had gone away.

After all of this, I was cranky and hungry so took a break to make trail mix out of chocolate chips and almonds and craisins and pink Himalayan sea salt (because I'm fancy, huh) and then ended up watching several episodes of Property Virgins on HGTV because I was so over taping.

I eventually got back to it.  Taping over the areas around the toilet was challenging because it's right between the vanity and the bathtub, so I was doing a series of moves that, if you replaced the papered-over toilet with a chair, might serve as choreography for Don't Tell Mama from the Broadway musical Cabaret.  I was also having fun covering lovely fixtures like this:

Because heaven forbid THAT get paint on it.  It might look ugly!

Once I had all the edges of things taped up carefully and nicely (because those lines are the lines you get!), I started covering the horizontal surfaces to protect against drips.  This involved emptying out my recycle bin and using old magazines because drop cloths are for sissies. By which I mean professionals.  Professional painters, I am sorry I just called you sissies.  

Those photos are also like a Where's Waldo of the millions of magazine subscriptions I described a little while ago as well as some catalogs.  Try to spot the National Geographic poster of Mauna Kea!  In any case, I may have gone a little overboard with covering stuff, but I'm paranoid about drips.  After all this crap I've been doing, I don't want drips.

By this point, it was getting rather dark in the bathroom because, as you may recall, there is no active light fixture at the moment.  And Husband has this big light thing he uses in the garage, but guess who isn't answering his phone?  So I decided to wait to put on that first coat until he could hook me up with the light and the sun came back in force to that side of the house.  So, tomorrow.  

The ultimate big news is that after three days, I still haven't started painting yet.  I probably could have done one coat if I hadn't started so late and taken that HGTV break, but c'est la vie.  Honestly, the easiest part is yet to come.  All I have to do now on this painting project is paint.  And that's always a good time.  Right?  

The supplies await patiently.
Tomorrow:  the finish line.  (I sincerely hope.)

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