If the women can't find you handsome, they sure better find you handy

Several years ago I took a liking to a PBS show called the Red Green show. On the advice of a friend, I sat down and watched as Red used a wooden door, restaurant salt shakers, and a ton of duct tape to turn his 70's Dodge Cargo Van into a snow plow. I was hooked. I tuned in regularly to see what he would do next, and he never disappointed. From turning a Greyhound Bus into a convertible with a steering column that reached the back seat to sawing the top off his car, welding gutters to the sides, and having a garbage truck pick it up to clean the car out, he was full of off the wall yet brilliant ideas. And at the end of each show, he would look into the camera and tell his audience that "if the women can't find you handsome, they sure better find you handy!"

I have never been accused of being handy. Don't get me wrong, I know enough about construction to write a good scope of work, and did pass my estimating course with a 98%. But when it comes to throwing the actual hammer, well let's just say the coordination I inherited from my mother leaves a lot to be desired. Last fall, when trying to do a household project, my wife asked if I could phone my friend Dave. And my lack of handy skills has prompted the boss to ban me from ever hanging any picture, whiteboard, or window blind at our shop. A little embarrassing? Sure, but I know keeping a hammer out of my hand is probably in everyone's best interests. Or at least I did.

About a week ago I got a heck of a deal on vinyl flooring. I mean, pennies on the dollar for an entire roll of commercial grade flooring that I was lucky to get. It's not your Odd Lots, 15 bucks a box, peel and stick tile. No, this stuff is very high quality, extremely durable, and quite contemporary. And laying it in our kitchen would give that room a major face lift, making it look more like 2014 than 1983.

Of course my immediate thought was who can I pay to put this down. But Tiffany, well she told me she thought we could handle it ourselves. I laughed at her and asked if she had met me? She said yes, but lets give it a shot anyways. What's the worst that could happen? Again, have you met me. She smiled, and I knew that the decision had already been made. So yesterday morning, the project began.

As we carefully made the cuts and applied the glue, the boys came in to help. We pressed out the air bubbles and walked on the floor until the last of the old was covered. I stood back, and was truly amazed at just how much it did for the room. It turned out well enough that we decided to replace the floors by both our front and back doors. Each time we put down a section, it transformed the entire area. When we were done, I turned, looked at Tiffany, and chuckled. She asked why I laughed, and I repeated the words of Mr. Green. "If the women cannot find you handsome, they sure better find you handy!" She laughed told me that, for the first time, she would say I am both.

Maybe not. I have a long way to go before I would consider myself a Jack of all Trades. And at 41, I am probably too old to start learning how to frame up walls. But for today, the floors are in. And the halls and bathrooms are painted, a new dog gate is up, the carpets are clean, and our fixer upper antique piano is in the garage. Not bad for the weekend, even if my back is reminding me that I am not 20 any more.

Day # 391. Next project is to start replacing doors and trim. Going to bring my house into the 21st century yet. It is good to be me.

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