By the way, who are these yutzes that say, "If I won 60 million in the lottery I wouldn't quit my job. I really like it, so I'd keep on working there."
I say to them, "Are you out of your flippin' skull?"
I too really like what I do, but if somebody dropped that kind of money in my pocket, my tool belt would get retired quicker than a Big Mac sitting in front of Rosie O'Donnell. Yes, you could pretty much expect to find me on some white sand beach with a little umbrella sticking out of my Dr Pepper can awaiting my next massage.
"What's that? It's time for my afternoon rubdown?" sounds much better than, "Sure ma'am I'd love to come over to your house in the middle of the freezing cold rainy season and build a deck on the back of your house."
Oh yeah, my job would be a thing of the past!
Well back to reality. To date nobody has offered to give me a big pile of money to spend for them and since I haven't bought a lottery ticket in about fifteen years, winning it probably is out of the question.
This brings me to the original point of this story. During the summer months I typically paint the exteriors of a few houses. At the risk of tooting my own horn, I'm pretty good at it and as a side benefit, the money's not bad either.
What I don't care for are ladders. . . Well maybe that's not an accurate statement. Climbing ladders might be more appropriate. You see I do not like heights at all. To put it mildly, they scare the crap out of me.
I've realized it's very difficult to paint the outside of a house with both of my feet on the ground at all times. In fact, it's down right impossible to do on a two story home.
(Mom, you may want to stop reading now.)
So, I do what I don't necessarily want to. I climb twenty or thirty feet in the air and try to think "happy thoughts". This is much better than thinking about whether or not my body would bounce once or twice if I hit the ground or whether it would just go THUD!
I try to think about what Lisa will be making for dinner that night rather than, "I wonder if the life insurance coverage is enough?"
This past October I, along with my brother Mark, had a two story house to paint that had a bit of a twist to it. Most of it was pretty straight forward, but the front had a couple of features that required some 'special engineering'.
As you will see later, it had a tile roof. Please understand, waking on tile is an art form in itself. If you step on the wrong part, it cracks and does so with very little effort. Now, walking on tile with a layer of moss on it is just plain dumb. Fortunately the few remaining brain cells I have left kicked in and said, "don't even think about it."
The next part of the puzzle was the pitch or the slope of the roof. It had what is called a 8/12 pitch. This means for every eight inches of horizontal length it has, it rises by twelve inches. If you want a general feel for what this looks like take two pieces of paper, stand one up on its side and take the other, using the long side, and form a triangle from the top of the first piece to the table . This is roughly what the pitch of the roof was. If my directions didn't make since, just know it was steep, really steep!
Oh ya, did I mention the front lawn was soft? This meant using a lift was out of the question as it would have just sunk in, creating deep ruts in the front yard. This is not what I would call a problem. No, I thought of it as a challenge. "The house would not win," I declared.
Armed with this enthusiasm and my three remaining brain cells I set out to devise a plan to conquer the task at hand. DING! The light bulb went on, or maybe that was just the microwave, either way I had figured out my strategy.
Back my truck into the driveway and lay my 24 foot extension ladder on the roof and wedge it onto the end of the truck bed. This meant positioning the truck just right so that the ladder matched the angle of the roof perfectly. I would do this so the weight of my delicate frame would be distributed evenly over several feet as I climbed to my perch in the sky. Once at the end of this ladder I would still have another twelve feet to go to get to the top. This meant I'd have to take apart a second ladder and take it with me to the top of the first one. Piece of cake right? One small problem, I had to angle the first ladder across the roof to get to the side of the house in front of the soft lawn.
With that I give you the following two pictures:
(Mom, I know you didn't stop reading earlier, so I'll tell you now, don't look.)
These were taken from my brothers camera phone so the quality is pretty poor and the light is in the wrong position for a good shot, but I wasn't giong to hang out up there until everything was just so.
If I were rich would I quit my job?
You're damn skippy I would!