Thursday, October 29, 2015

I Should Be Grading

I should be grading, but I don't want to. Outside, the sky is varying shades of grey. The clouds are a tightly, knit sewn quilt blanketing the city. This is odd for "The Sun City", but unlike most I enjoy chilly weather, rain, and what the clouds bring.

I should be grading, but I keep ignoring the digital stack of papers. The semester is at week 10 and the students who are going to "get" it have already proven themselves. The "not taking this seriously" have disappeared like the mice who inhabited my office for the first month of the semester. I'm still not sure of the "I'm gonna buckle downs". I stay hopeful, but not too much, so it won't hurt as much when they too disappear.

I should be grading, but the weekend is calling. Saturday is Halloween. I always love Halloween, but this year I have less zest in my pep. Yesterday, I suggested to my husband we dress up as Kurt Cobain and Courtney Love. We just need blond wigs. He said, "Okay". I wish I had thought of it sooner, and I could have found a shirt with the word love scrawled across it. There is a pun in there somewhere.

I should be grading, but instead I'm thinking about what I'm going to read this evening. Tonight, I'm going to be reading at the Camino Real for a college function. I am torn between reading new work and comfortable work.

I should be grading, but I am writing this post. My blog has been harder to maintain lately. I have ideas in my mind but instead I grade. I worry about my community work. I answer emails. I don't like my community work anymore. I don't want to answer student emails who haven't come to class in two weeks. I want to write about the Segundo Barrio picture I saw on Facebook. I've imagined the whole scene of a young Mexican cat hitting on a sweet young ruca while Malo's Suavecito plays in the background.  Her wide blue bell bottoms balance round hips as she walks to the smooth beat of the song.


Her swings so that the cat can't help but call out, "Oye, linda...."  And, she can't help but turn to look at the snug, green shirt stretched tight on the lean brown frame leaning against the shine so bright hurts your eyes burgundy Chevy Monte Carlo.

I should be grading...

Friday, October 2, 2015

The Bathroom Remodel

The last two weeks have been filled with weekend warrior type activity. We are remodeling our half bath. It all started with painting. I wanted to change the color to a bright yellow instead of the aged rose I had first painted it.

Things happen when I get started on a project. The "things" that happen are, I often get carried away. I start thinking bigger and better and, and, and...I know this about myself. I just get so damned excited that my brain starts working a mile a minute and it wants to go. I get lofty ideas that in the end usually end up being amazing (well, if they didn't, this wouldn't keep happening. now, would it?) but mid-point I question myself. It often takes until the mid-point for this to happen.

For the husband, he questions me almost immediately, mostly because he knows he will have to help me. He wants to catch my balloon head with its lofty ideas by the string before I float off too far and suddenly my idea is the size of the Good Year Blimp. Only, it won't say "Daniel, You're a Pimp". It will say "Daniel, You Have A Lot of Work to Do"

So, as I taped the baseboards and the tile edges of the shower, I began to stare at the old linoleum on the floor. The rest of the house has been tiled. The only two rooms that remind me of the past are the bathrooms with their dated linoleum pattern. I continued to tape. The linoleum continued to mock me. The wheels began:

We could pull up the linoleum. 
No. That's too much work. 
Wait, Yasmin. Remember you read about DIY fixers for linoleum floors?
Oh, yeah. I did!
We could paint the floor a nice solid color. 
You could do it like the example and make stripes!

This is a really small bathroom though. Do you really want to make stripes? Daniel will like the stripes, but will you?
No, no. Solid is much better. Go solid. Don't show him the stripes.
But with the humidity the paint will get weird right away. 
We should pull up the linoleum. 
You already said that was too much work. Don't be crazy. 
Yeah. Don't be crazy. 
The concrete floor! Remember the DIY concrete floor you saw? 
Oh, yeah! I liked that!

As he began to paint the walls, my fingers worked a mile on my tablet trying to find the article I'd seen. When I found it, I showed it to him. 

"You want to concrete the floor?" he asked. 
"Yeah! Let's just redo the whole bathroom. Except the tile. I don't think I can handle tile."
"Concrete? What about the paint? You said we could paint the floor. I like the paint idea."
"Yeah, but with the shower and humidity it's gonna get gross right away. Don't you think?"
"I don't think so--"
"It will. You start painting, and I'll run to Home Depot. It will look great!"
"Right now?" 
"Yeah! It will be great! You'll have a whole new bathroom!"

I ran out of the house, into the car, and straight to Home Depot before he could stop me. Driving there I thought:

Are you sure you can do the floor?
Yeah! I can totally do it. The article made it look super easy! 
Okay, but it better look cool. 
It will. It will. Stop worrying. 

Two weeks later, three layers of feather light concrete, sanding, blue stain, and floor sealant, we have a beautiful concrete floor. What have I learned? (well, that I have awesome ideas of course) That my ideas are lofty, but work out. Originally, I thought we could get it done in one weekend though. This is the third weekend, and I just got done putting primer on the vanity. I'm waiting for it to dry. He is very happy with his bathroom. I am very happy with the bathroom. But, I wonder if he is asking himself if he should have reached for that string sooner.