Tuesday, October 06, 2009

floored, I'm sure

wood floor
Originally uploaded by daveterry.

A friend called earlier this week to ask if I'd help them "get started" installing their wood floor.

"Sure, no problem, glad to help."

So yesterday after work I went over to 'get them started.' But there were several challenges ahead.

First I had to tie the new floor into two other floors of adjoining rooms, one of which was the hallway laid 10 years earlier. Worse, some of the boards had no groves. In fact, the ends looked like they'd been hacked off with an axe.

While sanding them true with a Dremel tool their boxer came over to check things out. He was curious and so stuck his nose within inches of the sander.

"Hey, I can't see what I'm doing here, you mind?"

He didn't seem to.

I also noticed that this hallway was the only access that he knew of to get to the other rooms and it seems that he needed to go to them frequently.

As I worked nailing in each piece, the owner kept me supplied with a steady stream of "approved boards." Each and every one was compared with the ones already nailed before it could be approved.

If the board didn't meet with her approval, she'd lay it in a pile behind me or lean it against the wall beside me. Soon boards were stacked everywhere. Several times I turned, knocked a board, and like a starting domino, it crashed into the rest of the rejected timbers all of which then became a pile like kindling strewn across the floor. That got the boxer mad so he came at me barking.

When the approved piece was finally handed to me, I'd nail it in place and wait patiently for the next one. Sometimes the approved board was missing the grove because it was a cut piece from the prior row. Not noticing it until I nailed it in place, I'd then spend some quality time with the crowbar.

To get the boards to fit snugly, I used a small length of material as a whacking board. After several rows I couldn't locate it again. After an extended search I was meekly told that it was the perfect board for a previous row. I turned to look, there it was, nailed into the row behind me.

Five hours later we were out of boards and out of nails but plenty of floor lay ahead. There wasn't enough material to finish.

Rats. I hate that for them.

If God wanted us to bend over he'd put diamonds on the floor. - Joan Rivers