After four months, the partner’s desk project is finally complete. Corb’s weekend in his pseudo-meth lab really paid off.
The first photo shows what the desk looked like when we initially purchased it. We found the desk in the basement of an antique shop, gathering dust and unassembled. It’s circa 1890 (although I am singularly unreliable when it comes to dates, and I am certain that Corb will correct me on that when he reads this) and came from the Point Judith Inn, located in Narragansett, Rhode Island. According to the grizzled owner of the thrift shop, he was friends/neighbors with the then-owner, whose husband was battling cancer, forcing her to sell the place. That’s how the desk came into his possession, and how it sat in his basement for about a year.
I don’t know what we saw in it, frankly. In looking at the photo now, it looks awfully scuffed up. Corb was the one who saw some potential first, of course. For me, it was the back story that interested me. I’m a sucker for back stories. I mean, who knows if it’s even true? It doesn’t really matter, it just gives me something to talk about, you know?
But the point is, he saw potential. And for the first few months, it just sat in our kitchen as is, while the wheels in Corb’s fertile little mind starting spinning. Then he started making some calls, to see what some local carpenters would charge to fix it up. Then he didn’t like the quotes that he received. Then he decided he could do the job himself. Then he freaked out, wondering whether he actually had the vision and skills to get the job done. And in the past month, he finally realized that he did–and he could.
To make it a proper kitchen island, he built two small platforms on the bottom, to raise each desk up a few inches. Next, he sanded and stained the tabletop, which is truly my favorite part of the project. After that, we took one of the paint buckets that the previous owners had thoughtfully left us in the basement, to match the color of the desk to the cabinets in the kitchen. Then came the hard part: sanding and painting the desk itself. Would it look okay? A few people were kind of shocked that he was painting over the wood. But after even just the first coat of primer, both of us knew it was going to look terrific.
And there you have it! This month’s episode of “From Drab to Fab” (a title Corb HATES, by the way. He much prefers, “From Old to Bold.” He thinks the former title sounds a little gay.)
Note: I have forbidden Corb from embarking upon any more home improvement projects for at least one whole week. Next Saturday, we are all gathering for my parents’ fiftieth wedding anniversary, which will begin with a small reception at the house. And if you don’t think that’s causing us stress…
Don’t you just love this photo? Corb took it this morning.
Corb is on the final stages of finishing off the partners desk project. He’s sanded and primed the desks and drawers, and now he’s in the process of putting the final coats of paint on everything, which is why he’s sealed off our porch, so that the paint doesn’t fly everywhere (and stain the porch, which…well..the first coats of paint may have done..)
Theo says it looks like we have a meth lab in our house. He’s been watching too much Breaking Bad.
“Is that a mean dog? That look likes a mean dog.”
Um. Say what?
Okay, I grant you, the lady at the cash register in the drive-through I was at appeared to be a nervous sort. She looked like somebody’s spinster aunt from an old black and white movie; kind of tentative, with large animated hands she was constantly clasping, and an awkward smile that suggested she didn’t get out much. Maybe she had been bitten by a dog at one point.
Even so. My Kyra, looking like a mean dog?
I honestly had not heard that before! And my habit has been to take Kyra with me wherever I go. Usually, people love Kyra, and go on and on about how pretty she is, want to pet her, want to offer her treats (P.S.: she’s a dog, she loves treats).
“Mean? No, not really.”
It must have been clear from my tone I was displeased with the question. Look, I don’t hide my feelings well. I never have been able to. The awkward lady must have sensed that, because as she handed me back my credit card she said, “Oh, look! She’s wagging her tail. She’s not a mean dog at all.”
“No. No, she’s not a mean dog.” With icicles in my voice, I moved drove away.
So we’ve had Kyra for about four months now, and I have to say, I think she’s wonderful. No, really. I am just crazy about this dog. I love her brown eyes and her floppy cock-eyed ears. She’s the most patient, loving pup there is. Never pees or poos in the house. Goes into her crate at around nine, practically without being asked. Follows me around everywhere. And at around six, as we start eating, she is right there on the couch in her special place, ready to watch TV with us and keep us company.
She’s also pretty damn smart, too. She’s learned to sit and stay and fetch, already, and the only one she’s having trouble with is giving us her paw. She’s great off her leash, too, and hasn’t once tried to run away from us. She simply sniffs around and wanders nearby, and when we call her, comes running back.
The only thing I’ve noticed is a bit of timidity around certain strangers, mostly teenage boys. I think that’s understandable, though, given her circumstances. She is a rescue dog, after all, and did see her brothers and sisters get killed by a group of teenage boys in Memphis who thought it would be fun to jump on top of a bunch of puppies and squish the life out of them. I think given that, I’d be a little nervous around boys, too.
Plus, she’s an awfully good snuggler. She just looks up at you with those brown eyes of hers and licks you like crazy.
I guess there dog people and cat people and when you get right down to it, I’m a dog person. Corb says I don’t have as deep a connection to our cats, and maybe he’s right. I mean, I like them a lot, but there’s just something about a dog. Loyalty. Unconditional love. If only she could clean her room, I might even consider replacing her for my kids.
So, mean dog? Not on your life, lady. There aint no mean dog here. Nothing but love!
I was held captive last week by the story of the story of “the gated California community, where porcelain dolls were being left on the doorsteps of girls they hold an eerie resemblance to.” (Source: ABC News, including the alleged grammatical faux pas of ending in a preposition. Personally, I’m not a big stickler about that, although I probably would have reworked this sentence to read “to whom they bear an eerie resemblance.” But that’s just me.)
It has the makings of a great suspense novel, doesn’t it? Something out of “Where are the Children?” Rich people in a gated community, good clean decent people living the American dream. Loveable little ten year old moppets. An evil psychopath, watching, scheming. One by one, leaving creepy porcelain dolls on the front doorstep of his potential victims. The terror mounts. What do they mean? What will happen next?
I’m almost betting someone is writing the story right now.
Turns out the truth is a bit less sinister. The culprit? Not a sinister child abductor, but a little old lady with a huge porcelain doll collection, approaching the twilight of her life and looking to find a nice place for the babies she loves. I think it’s kind of sweet, and also sad that we immediately thought the worst of the situation.
I blame Stephen King, personally.
Of course, perhaps it would have been wise to leave a note or at least talk to the parents, first. But then of course, that’s forgetting the fact that we are talking about a LITLE OLD LADY. In her mind, the anonymity, being a mysterious kindly benefactor, is probably part of the fun.
Oh, and by the way: I do find porcelain dolls creepy. Josie has one in a stroller at her house, an antique that was a gift from her mother. It’s terrifying. I don’t think I could sleep in that place any more, knowing it’s there and has the potential to terrorize me.
But aside from that, what kind of world do we live in where we automatically go to the sinister? That the media is right away contacted, that they of course see the news potential in the story, that they make a big deal out of it and fearmonger about it and it becomes national news? Think about it: this is mundane stuff. This should not be national news. This should be the stuff that small towns are made of. But we are so accustomed to the sinister potential in a plotline like that that we fail to look at the reality, focus only on the fiction. This is truly a “Culture of Fear” kind of situation. Our precious babies, terrorized by porcelain babies! Won’t somebody think of the children?
I mentioned to Corb that it would make for a great story, and of course, he did me one better, genius that he is. “You should flip it around,” he said. “Make it so that someone is dropping off ten year old little girls at the doorstep of doll collectors that look just like their dolls. Hello, here’s a little girl! See how they deal with that.”
I tell you, that guy should a writer. That idea is almost as good as our idea for a remake of Little Women, only featuring a cast consisting entirely of tiny female midgits. Can’t you just see it?
Oh, I just read that the little old lady has been identified and she says she is “embarrassed” by the whole incident. What is there to be embarrassed about? She was trying to do a nice thing! And even though it’s been proven to be completely innocent, the story is still told in as “creepy” a way as possible, to set the fear factor on eleven. I tell you, we live in a sad, sad society. Enjoy your twilight years, lady…and keep your creepy Chucky dolls to yourself!