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Monday, April 19, 2010

Nothing to Show, Not Much to Tell

Can't find my camera. Feeling incomplete. Here's something I wrote on Thursday, thinking I'd have pictures to go with it:

What exactly was it that Archimedes said about a fulcrum and a place to stand? Take your pick of the quotes. I have my own story, and it begins with a friend of mine. Two friends, actually, married to each other for a long time.

For years these people were remodeling their kitchen, a project that stretched on and on. When they got a little money ahead, they would buy materials and hire workers, and when the money ran out, they’d stop until finances permitted the project to move forward again. At last the end was in sight. There remained, however, the pressed tin ceiling they’d bought many years before and had in storage all this time. The wife wanted to go ahead and get it up. The husband shook his head, telling her, “That’s a three-man job, and we can’t afford to hire it done right now.” “Let’s see if we can do it ourselves,” the woman insisted. It wasn’t easy. It must have been pretty scary at times. But together, somehow, the two got that ceiling up. When I heard the story, it concluded with these words: “It wasn’t a three-man job, after all. It was a one-man, one-determined-woman job!”

David is always managing to do jobs alone that would be more easily done with help, and when I ask, “How did you do it?” his answer is always the same: “Egyptian engineering!”

There’s no way that moving a single piece of furniture can compare to installing a ceiling or doing any of the projects David undertakes, but I really did think that moving a heavy, six-foot-long, four-shelf unit would have to be a two-person job. Then the sun disappeared behind the clouds, the day dragged on, and I was alone, unhappy and impatient.

It wasn’t a two-person job, after all. It was a One-Determined-Woman job! You may call me Archimedea.

Each day, e small step.


Anonymous said...

Over the last decade I have learned again and again that I can do practically anything if I take it in "small bites." For the other things, well, that's where Rob the Firefighter comes in handy!

P. J. Grath said...

Amen, Gerry!

Deborah said...

This reminds me of our television, vcr (when those were used) wooden unit. Mover's couldn't get it down the basement stairs. Called another set of professional movers who also couldn't get it downstairs. One day when I was gone Joe, determined man he is, moved it downstairs by himself. Smart thing to do with no one home? No. It is downstairs however.

P. J. Grath said...

Funny, Deborah: I read your last two words as "downstairs forever"--which it probably is!

Anonymous said...
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Anonymous said...

"Egyptian engineering" = slave labor :)

P. J. Grath said...

Well, there was that, of course. When David employs EE, however, it's because I am not on hand to lend a hand or shoulder (???). He's thinking more of the inclined plane, etc.