Saturday, February 28, 2004

Up On the Roof

Got up to a whopping 62 degrees today. Just the day I needed to go up and paint the siding around the chimney before all the wood rots away.

Now, here's the thing... by the time you're 40, which I am, you're supposed to be smarter than to let your brain get away with the following type of rationalization:

"Hmmm, the ladder slips on the deck some. But.. they're rubber feet, they should hold. Let's try it." So, I made an attempt up to the roof. Sure enough, my weight seemed to combine with the coefficient of friction between the feet of the ladder and the deck and I got to the top. As I stepped off, it started to slide. Oops.

I painted the chimney cap to keep it from rusting further. Then came carefully back down the ladder. And once again, I thought to myself... "hey, you'd feel REALLY stupid, not to mention be in a lot of pain and possibly medical expense... if that ladder slipped. You should really get some rubber matting." I briefly looked around to see if there was any of that no-slip rubber matting around I could use. It didn't come out and bite me in the nose, so I stopped looking. The rationalizing Phil said "ah, we'll get by."

Had to go back up and paint the siding itself. Found the old can of siding stain left by the remodelers last summer. Took it up to the roof, thinking -- "well, hey, a few times up and a few times down, I'll just be very careful." Went up... forgot the brush. Went back down. Got the brush, backup again. About 2/3 of the way up, sure enough, the ladder slipped. Now I knew ahead of time that if this happened, there wouldn't be a hell of a lot I could do about it, and that there would likely be bone breakage involved what with legs and ladders tangling all that slipping and sliding and flailing. Somehow, I had the presence of mind to step through the ladder on the way down and try to land on my feet, albeit with a ladder around one of them. Fortunately, it worked. Sort of.

I am a very lucky man not to have a broken leg right now, I must keep telling myself. I must keep telling myself that for two reasons. One, so I don't pull a stunt like that again, and two -- my left knee and ankle are killing me. They just started a little over an hour ago.

I had walked it off and it didn't seem to hurt much. The stain was dried to rubber anyway, so I took it to Sherwin Williams to have it matched. Little did I know that unlike Lowe's, they typically require 24 hours to match paint -- instead of 5 minutes. However, the boy assured me that nobody was ahead of me so he could have it done by 3:00. Good, I thought. It'll still be warm out and I can get it done.

So, I went to the International Grocery and bought some brown rice and sweet rice (I'm going to try the sweet rice for "popcorn rice" in some gumbo tomorrow -- after beignets and chickory coffee in the morning... mmmmmm) -- then I went to Circuit City and bought a 256 MB stick of memory to set my poor computer free from swapping so much. Then I went to HyVee and bought some shrimp and ham and other stuff for gumbo, and came home about 2:20. Vicki had just gotten back from lunch with Connie, and said the paint people called and the paint was ready. Put the groceries away. Went out and got the paint and went back up on the roof ... this time on the STEP LADDER.... see, I DO learn -- (but still, that whole wisdom thing was supposed to kick in BEFORE I did something stupid). Painted the chimney. Came down and put my memory in the computer (it's much happier now).

So, that's pretty much been my day. Vicki went to feed Connie's dad dinner at the hospital, I went back to the grocery store and got some potatoes to make that potato-green bean-polish sausage dish. Yep, that's the ingredients. Dump, cook, and it's sooooo good. Filled up the bird feeders and bird bath. Made dinner. Now I'm waiting for Vicki to get back.

Oh, about the leg. Right before I went back to the grocery store (remember all that running around in the afternoon?) my knee and ankle decided they were going to let me know just how stupid I'd been. I guess they were afraid I'd forget. Well I'll be reminded when I have to go out and replace the screen I ripped on the way down anyway, (thank you very much mister knee...)

Aren't you so glad you read this now? An exciting day in the life of Phil. Anyway, I popped 4 ibuprofen, and my knee feels better, but I need to stay off it all the same.

We went out to "Dinner and a Show" last night at the Artisan. Jane (Ida Jane, that is) is unhappy with them. Says that they don't treat artists well... especially female ones. I believe her. I don't go there a lot because of that. But, that's where everyone wanted to go and it sounded like fun. So Jorgies, Dourty's, Us & Kevin, Walkers, and Alex and Myla (Alex works with me -- he's Ukranian -- Myla's his wife). Myla is very bright and charming. Interesting couple to be around. We all had a good time. Some local dude was playing light jazz piano.

Well, I oughta wrap up.