Monday, October 23, 2006

The Worst Idea Ever

Mr. E and I are right in the middle of the vile and tedious process of stripping, sanding, and refinishing a crib we bought on Craigslist for $100. We wouldn't be doing this except that the crib of my dreams comes in a shade I refer to as "espresso" but actually is just dark brown and also doesn't exist. Well, let's be totally honest here, it does exist, but while I wanted a dark brown crib I wasn't about to pay $900 for the only one on earth from Pottery Barn Kids and so we bought a crib that comes in the same ugly cherry finish as all the other non Pottery Barn Kids cribs and we've been working on turning it dark brown for ages now.

This type of asking for trouble and making work where none is really needed (the crib really was perfectly good when it was cherry colored, after all) really is something I do ALL THE TIME, it's just part of my nature and I can't help it, and I am just lucky that Mr. E puts up with it as much as he does. However Sunday afternoon I think he finally maybe got a little sick of sweating over a hot power sander and he looked over at me and said "I think this might be our worst idea ever."

This is a powerful statement because as I said I tend to always choose the most difficult way of doing anything ever. For example I couldn't just register for regular old overpriced crib bedding (which is totally unnessary anyway), I had to choose the discontinued overpriced crib bedding and build my nursery theme around and it spend months searching for and overpaying for it on Ebay. So yeah, I think it's fair to say I've cooked up A LOT of crazy projects since Mr E. and first dirtily salsa danced together one magic night in 1997 and not all of them have been, uh, the most fun. Some of them have maybe even gotten away from me, maybe turned out to be a bit more work than I figured on? But although the crib sanding suuuuuuucks it's also, IMHO, kind of fun. We get to hang out together and use power tools and I read some fascinating articles on Fine Woodworking dot com which was actually kind of cool in a nerdy way, and everyone loves a project, so I decided no. Crib refinishing? Not worst idea ever.

But then I had a lot of time to think about it during the hours of tedious crib sanding and ever since then I've been trying to think of what our worst idea actually was. We once painted our bedroom this horrible bright orange faux finish and it was really really ugly, but we had so much fun doing that I don't think it qualifies, and Mr. pointed out we learned a lot about color choices during that experience. Uh huh. Arranging my own wedding flowers was Le Most Incredible Giant Pain in the Le Ass so I thought maybe that, but they turned out so lovely and amazing I cannot complain. When I think of my wedding day I can still smell the dahlias, and what more could you ask for than that? I suggested that maybe having a baby could turn out to be our Worst Idea Ever but Mr. E felt that anything where you get to do it first doesn't count and I can't say I disagree with him on that.

I know there were times I sat on the kitchen counter and stared at my feet as tears ran down my face and I realized for the hundreth time that I was actually LIVING IN NEBRASKA and Mr. E had a Ph D but couldn't find a job and hell, sometimes during those days life seemed like a pretty terrible idea, but in the end when I look back I also remember laughing and sunshine and my running path and I remember how we got stronger and mostly I remember how we were together through it all and I am glad for those times.

I was forced to conclude that we've been through some shit and not all of it has been fun or a barrel of laughs, but we haven't yet had a really truly worst idea ever, and that, to me, says it all. I am lucky and blessed to have this person for a partner who always always always makes even the most terrible of terrible ideas worth it in the end.

Although I will let you know how I feel when I have finished hand padding a french polish finish onto forty milion crib slats. I guess you could say the jury's still out on that one.

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