Smooth Maneuver, Shithead; Tile Floor Finished


So. Today is Black Friday and my ADHD has taken over my brain. I’m unsure what might have triggered the lunatics to revolt and rise up and seize the controls, but rise and seize they have done. Maybe it was the dinner party yesterday wherein I somehow managed to piss off an entire roomful of family and new friends or, maybe, it was the not-so-simple task of relaying 35 square feet of 16-inch ceramic tile floor.

Or maybe it’s the quite simple fact that I’m an ADHD-addled fuckball who lacks the attention span of an amoeba and likewise lacks the social borders required to provide filtered thoughts during polite conversation. Sometimes when a person has fifteen individual thoughts at once, plucking something appropriate to say about a canned spinach casserole with a burnt graham cracker crust is difficult. Especially when Yoda the goat dog won’t touch a bite of it.

I just realized that I spelled amoeba correctly. I’ve already misspelled casserole and roomful and misspell, but I got amoeba right.

Saying, “Well, I passed on your spinach casserole when I saw the goat dog turn his nose up at it. That little shit will eat anything,” might not be an interpersonal communications method mentioned in How To Win Friends And Influence People.

Then, when the preparing chef of said crappy casserole says, “I thought I’d be creative and, rather than use Campbells Cream of Mushroom soup, I decided to add three packets of Ramen Noodle soup base,” and the nice neighbor lady standing next to me gags, and I misinterpret “gags” for “chokes”. Her ample breast flopped against my forearms like big water balloons as I administered the Heimlich Maneuver, and now her husband won’t look me in the eyes.

Some women should wear brassieres.

I’m starting to think that it’s the tile dealio that set my attention deficits into high gears. I should have gotten with J.O.B. before I ever started the project. J.O.B. Helped Squatlo with his tile messes, but I forgot and didn’t seek his counsel. Council?

Adrian and I started the removal of improperly-installed ceramic floor tiles Sunday morning—a task we thought would take less than half a day—with plans to have the new tiles laid by day’s end. We’d grout early Monday morning and be done with it. A plan fraught with inaccurate assumptions.

I’ve had a head cold for a month or so, a malady initiated by a blast-to-the-face of construction dust. The electrician was grinding a plaster and adobe wall to run a Code-required outlet on a wall where I really don’t want a fucking electrical outlet. I’d had a fifteen-minute argument with the City Inspector about, “Fuck your stupid City Codes, I don’t want to tear that wall apart to install an electrical plug I’ll never use,” and then another fifteen-minute talk with the electrician about, “If you get dust all over the house one more time when you grind that wall, I’ll rip your balls out by the roots.”

Having concerns for his balls, the electrician used two Shop Vacs—one exhaust hose connected to the intake of the second vacuum and the second exhaust hose poking out a partially-opened window. A topical solution resulting from critical thought.

I was standing ten feet away—supervising—as he was grinding with one hand and holding the suction hose in the other, and the dust was streaming outside. I noticed that the grinder was straying off the pre-marked line I’d drawn up the wall for him and I stepped over to tell him. I caught my big foot on the discharge hose from the second Vac and ripped the end out of the window. I got a full blast of dust right in the face.

The dust clogged my entire respiratory system for a couple weeks and then allergies or a cold took over, resulting in what has felt like a six weeks head cold complete with snotty nose and loss of the sense to smell mildew.

I’d kept the hall bath closed off for the last week to keep anyone from cutting their feet or shoes on the sharp edges of mislaid, broken tile. When Adrian opened the door, he did one of those double-take dealies and said, “We got us a bigger problem than bad tile, brother. Something is rotten in Denmark.”

Turns out, when the asshole right-wing Republican shitbrained tile-laying motherfuckers had mislaid the original tile, they nicked a hole in one of the new WIRSBO plumbing lines I just installed, and hot water was leaking between the Hardiplank underfloor and the original oak plank and rough-sawn pine sub-flooring. Maybe that should be “rough-sawed” sub-flooring. Screw it, I like the word sawn.

Anyway, the entire bathroom had to be deconstructed down to the heavy fir cross-beams, those beams sprayed with anti-fungal chemicals and then dried before reconstructions. I’m allergic to some molds, which might have worsened my nasal congestions.

Which reminds me. Since my sense of smell was so diminished, maybe I should have at least tasted that spinach casserole. Can something actually taste bad if you can’t taste it?

It took us all day Sunday to remove the plumbing fixtures and tear out all the waterlogged materials. I hate chemicals but I hate the thought of dying a death by black mold worse, so I sprayed anti-fungal on the fir timbers that comprise the basic foundation of the bathroom. Monday, we allowed things to dry and then Tuesday we reinstalled sub-floorings, Hardibacker and then tiles.

The tiles were laid in what Adrian calls a “mud set”, which to my eyes was a full mortar bedding material much like when you lay concrete blocks. That dried until Wednesday afternoon when Adrian came back to grout all the seams. For the uninitiated, grouting tile is a major ass pain and requires multiple washing/drying and then re-washings to insure that you get all the grout film removed from your finished work.

I wiped the last of the grout film from the floor about an hour before the first Thanksgiving dinner guest arrived, and I only cut myself six times over the five days of bathroom re-tiling efforts. Have you ever gotten fresh garlic juice in a deep finger cut?

I’ll be working on a new medical product—an antiseptic cleaner made with lemon and garlic juice. Anything that stings that bad has got to be good for you. I’ll donate all the profits to the Food Bank. Maybe that would be an antiseptic cleanser.

Which reminds me. Can you even believe that America has approximately 700,000 homeless people? What, inthefuck, is wrong with us? I don’t give a rat’s ass why they are homeless, those are Americans, humans. We need to provide them with basic shelter and food.

But I didn’t take the leftover spinach casserole down to the shelter last night. That shit wasn’t good enough for the dogs.

Manana, y’all.

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5 Responses to “Smooth Maneuver, Shithead; Tile Floor Finished”

  1. squatlo says:

    Okay, the Hooey Gods are working us both over in a coordinated attack, which leads me to believe this isn’t coincidental. Bastards. I’ve been a mucous distillery for six days now, and have been going through a rain forest of tissue/tp a day since last Friday night. Antibiotics might be the only reason this flow hasn’t congealed into an infected logjam…

    But I digress. Someone made a spinach casserole using Ramen flavor packets? Tell me something… was this person recently seen at a GOP fundraiser bitching about Democratic infiltrators in her neighborhood? My god, it’s not a social faux pas to step away from a hazardous material site and refuse a forkful of the shit!

    Now, spinach casserole might be wonderful, I don’t know. My lovely (and dangerous) wife loves spinach and makes a lot of things with that disgusting weed, so I’ve had to come around on my negativity regarding that particular green. Hell, I didn’t think I liked squash until she put the first squash casserole on the table and MADE ME try it. By god, was I ever wrong about squash. Now we grow them every summer and I count the freezer supply whenever she starts to pass them out to the people we love.

    “Honey, we don’t really like my sister all that much… why are we taking one of our last seventeen squash casseroles to her house?”

    I’ve found that my willingness to share garden bounty is defined by that person’s political correctness. If they’re shitty in their political opinions, they get fewer tomatoes, salsa, casseroles, etc. Only fair.

    The tile thing is something I won’t belabor. Bless your heart for having some of the same shitty results I put up with all summer. At least my madness was OUTSIDE, and the dust was annoying the neighbors and not just my sinus cavities…

    Later, man. Happy Thanksgiving one more time!!!

  2. bj says:

    With all yer trials and tribulations ….. it could be werse, Moondog. You still takin’ yer meds?

  3. mel says:

    Um, yeah. Whenever my husband the builder tells me how long something is going to take I ALWAYS add additional time. Always. And where did you find that original dude? For real.

    As far as your sense of smell and tasting and what not, I think if your smell glands were not working properly your tasting would be gone too. Aren’t those parts best friends?

    Happy belated Thanksgiving. And fuck black Friday.

  4. squatlo says:

    “Smooth maneuver, shithead!”… Okay, were you there the day I accidentally-on-purpose blew the horn of a car at a car show, inside a pavillion full of people, several of whom were under the hood of said car at the time? Climb aboard the WABAC machine and come with me to circa 1972, the car show at the Knoxville Municipal Auditorium. Come watch as I climb inside the souped-up new Mustang model. Watch as I ponder the car horn, wondering, “Would this be hooked up, or do they take the batteries out of these cars at shows?” Watch as I press the horn to check. Feel the “thud” as multiple heads jerk back and slam into the car’s open hood. Listen as one (previously sleeping) infant in a stroller bursts into a wail of tears. Listen to said child’s father, rubbing the back of his head, as he leans into the car and yells, “Smooth maneuver, shithead!”

    Verbatim quote. You had to have been there, Mooner. I still hear that blaring horn, screaming child, and angry red face yelling at me.

    One of my finer moments. I was with a young lady and her family, and they had reluctantly invited me along at her request. I made such a fine impression on her dad that day. Managed to spray the back of his neck with an Icee later on the ride home when my straw sprang away from my lips slinging flavored ice all over the folks in the front seat of the car.

    Ah, good times…

  5. Mooner Johnson needs sexing says:

    Squat. Casseroles have always been a mixed bag to me. I prefer combining leftovers into a big pot of soup because I like juicy rather than dry leftovers.

    As for the car show blunder, my eight-years old at the time son answered that age-old car show question, “Does it drive, daddy?” I had been teaching him to drive–letting him sit in my lap as fathers do with their young sons. He knew how to start, steer, brake and push down on the “go thingie”.

    Why, in the fuck, would the ignition switch be left to fully-engage the L-1 engine of a 1985 Corvette at a car show? Can you say, “Noooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooo!!!”

    They had, fortunately, set the emergency brake. You’ve never seen Chevy salesmen run so fast.

    Beej. Some of these new ADHD meds scare me. I prefer my perscriptions with the known side effects of those native medications with centuries-long human trials. I’d much rather deal with melting walls and faces than, “…possible impotance or death.”

    Mel. Found the first tiler at the tile store from their list of recommends. As for smell glands, my fourth wife always said that mine were the best she ever knew. I’ll leave your imagination to work that one over.

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