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Saturday, July 3, 2010

The pool, the lumber store and Scandanavian furniture...

What do they all have in common? Me.

First of all, the pool is great in that it's crystal clear and has been for a week. Apparently I should expect complete visibility right down to the very bottom of the deep end because that's exactly what I have. The water level is dropping between one half to one inch per week and it's not incredibly hot out. I don't know if it's evaporation or a leak and right now the loss is minuscule compared to what I used to be dealing with so I don't particularly care. What does bother me is this yo-yo action with the chlorine. The six pucks I put in the floating chlorinator are still there. That would be great, since I'd be saving tons of money, if it wasn't for the fact that the chlorine registered at 0.3 today when I tested it. There's got to be a better way to keep the chlorine balanced than to shock it so much that it's off the charts and then have it drop so low that it's barely there. I may as well just be using the liquid chlorine and forget the pucks altogether. I guess I'll be off to the pool store yet again to try and figure it out.

Now, as for the lumber store, I finally went there for the first time since moving here eight months ago. It's one street over from me but I've previously driven 15 minutes out of my way to the big box store instead because local lumber yards that are frequented mostly by tradespeople scare me. In my experience I'm usually the only woman in the place. To show how sad I am, I asked a man to go with me, even though he knows less than I do about building and renovating, just to try and make myself appear more knowledgeable. Look, I had a bad experience when I lived in Toronto. Because I don't really know what I'm doing, even though I know what I want to do and sort of know how I'm getting there, some people see my inexperience and couple that with the fact that I'm a woman and take advantage of me. As sad as it seems, having a man with me gives people the impression that he must know what he's doing and people who may treat me a certain way when I'm alone don't do so if there's a man with me. Do I believe that every person at a lumber yard is going to talk down to me and try to short change me because I'm a woman? No, but some will. Just as some people will take advantage of anyone, including a man, who doesn't really know what he's doing. Today when I went to T______ Lumber, I may have received some curious looks from some of the other customers, but the man who helped me was indeed very nice and seemed pretty sincere. I bought some 2x4's and joist hangers to start building the raised bed platform this week. I need to get some sheet goods as well but they're going to charge me $40 for delivery even though I live basically across the street. Hopefully I can beg a favour from my mother, who has access to a vehicle that will hold 4x8 sheets of drywall or plywood etc. Otherwise I figure my only option will be to build myself a trolley out of the pieces of the dismantled work bench from the basement and walk the stuff home when I need to buy things. Perhaps it's not just because I'm a woman that people look at me funny? I hesitate to mention it, but I did encounter one unsavoury character at the lumber yard. He overheard me discussing delivery options and offered to deliver goods to my house. I asked him how much he wanted for the service and he said nothing, well, except that maybe I'd want my driveway sealed? Uh-huh. I told him he could come have a look and he got to my house before I did. He quoted me $120 for the job. Much cheaper to just pay $40 for the delivery outright don't you think? I told him that I couldn't spend that money right now because I've got problems with my pool that need fixing first. Apparently he's got a brother-in-law who can help. I said that I'm collecting quotes from companies and the brother-in-law is free to add his if he wants to. Apparently he's coming by Tuesday to have a look. I'm not holding my breath.

And finally for Scandinavian furniture. The other day I spent a small fortune buying things to dress my daughter's bedroom. A lot of that money went towards buying doors for the two bookcases in my daughter's room. It looks so much cleaner, and bigger, when the clutter is hidden. I wanted two solid doors but the doors that fit my particular model only come with glass panels in them. They sell solid panel doors, but only half height ones. No problem, I'd buy four for each cabinet and it'd work out the same in the end. Right? I picked up the items from the self serve warehouse and just to be safe I asked a staff member who worked in that section if what I was planning would work. "I have a tall B___ cabinet, without a height extender. I want to put two of these doors on the bottom and two on top. Will that work?" He said yes. "Do they come with hinges and knobs?" He said they come with hinges but no knobs. His associate piped up and said that the doors don't come with knobs but I could have the other guy, since he was a knob. Not funny, at least not in the way he intended the comment to be. Well, I installed two doors on the bottom of each bookcase the other day and then attempted to install two doors on the top of each bookcase this evening. Unless there is some trick that I can't figure out, which is still an option at this point, it can't be done. I've searched the catalog and the website and I can't find a single picture or description of this particular bookcase using four half height doors. Thankfully I only opened one of the final four boxes but I suspect I may get a hard time when I try to return them. On the up side I'll be saving myself $140 plus tax should I be able to return them. On the down side, what a pain in the butt! Oh, and guess what else? Those doors come with both hinges and knobs.

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