So we headed off to Lowes. We were just there to pick up a couple neccessary bits and bobs... but when we entered the building Janice and Rich saw that a whole mess of lighting fixtures were on clearance for like 75% off. And we all know what that means. It means the lobby now looks like this: WE'RE FIXED FOR FIXTURES. (bicycle not included)
Yup. Lights for the Shit Box (new name still pending), lights for above the bar, lights for hallway...lights lights lights. I always get nervous about the big clearance bulk purchases - because I get scared we're buying stuff we don't need just BECAUSE it's on clearance... But Rich and Janice talked me through the whole thing and assured me they were all fixtures were were going to need and use. The only ones that aren't 100% are the one's for above the bar - but they can always go back if we feel like they don't work well. But overall the savings was ridiculous...we got some fixutres that were like $75 for 10. So that's awesome. The ride back in the truck was pretty hysterical... because it was pretty late at this point and we were starving. So we needed to stop and get food. Which meant the stuff all had to fit iNSIDE the truck. So we tested Mr. Sparkle's advertised ability to sit three in the front seat. Which it did. Three seatbelts and everything. Verrrrryyyy cosy. On the way back from Bob Evans Rich announced that since there was no reason NOT to put things on the back of the truck on the way home, that he no longer felt it neccessary to drive with me almost sitting on his head. So I was banished to the back seat again. :)
It's our second favorite paint color name so far. The top is still "Unfussy Beige". And - sidebar - and i may have told you this earlier...but here's a nifty tip. When Janice and I went to get the Aloof Gray, we took it to Lowes...but it's a Sherwin Williams color. So we thought we'd have to have them do the scan match thing. But NO... Get this peeps. They HAVE all the competitor's paint colors in their computers so they can match them. Aloof Gray popped right up in their data base. And, here's another handy dandy tip, this turns out to be THE PERFECT way to get yourself a free gigantic Lowe's paint chart fan. The one we got from Benjamin Moore was like 11 bucks. They gave us this one for free when we asked if they had it... probably BECAUSE we were buying a competitor's color (and therefore could be getting paint from the competition rather than them). Neat, right?
Anyway - so we started Aloofing. At this point we were pretty darn punch drunk from lack of adequate grout-recovery-sleep, and it was late anyway. So when Janice said "I don't think the problem is the roller, i think the problem is the roller", it was surprising that I actually understood what she meant. She meant this... "Joel, it seems to me the difficulty we are having is due to a deficiency in the handle apparatus with which one uses the paint application pad. I don't think the problem is the pad itself." See - makes perfect sense. See one of our roller handle thingies isn't working right...and as you are rollering, the pad likes to slip off the handle gradually - and then you have to keep pushing it back in place every five minutes. Annoying. Anyway - so - the problem wasn't the roller...it was the roller".
So, we painted. We thought it looked pretty good. We went to bed. I awoke and there had been a Najuch pow wow. In fact, there had been a Najuch pow wow, a trip to Lowes to purchase said solution to pow wow, and, apparently, a plan to calm down the Jo Jo. Who by this point had developed Evil Cold and just wanted the BATHROOM FREAKING FINISHED. :( I'm cranky when I'm sick.
The pack leader did not like the acoustic spray. Not one bit. He felt that a) it looked like dirt on the wall (which, if you look at textured walls anywhere with those little bumpy bits... it LOOKS light dirt, doesn't it??? and b) he felt it didn't hide the reason we put it on there in the first place. In fact, it kind of exacerbated the issue, because the flecks fall onto the ridges...and build up along it's edge. So it made it more pronounced kinda sorta.
Admittedly...legitimate concerns. My responce to this issue was "waaaahhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh". With an extra side of "Waaaahhhh" hold the mayo. If I was a pop group, i would have been Waaaahhh-m. If i was a towel company I would have been Wwwaaahhhh-msutta. Wah wah wah. My wah factor was, of course, because I didn't want to paint ANOTHER room twice. And also, the Pack Leader suggestion was a texture medium which they got at Lowes. Which meant a new layer of stuff....then it had to dry....then paint again. So basically losing over 24 hours before the point we were at now. Wah. Rich told me that he and Janice would do the texture and I could sleep.
This presented a very substantial dilemma... a) Jo Jo sleep. sleeeeeep. Ahhhh. b) Jo Jo let Rich do artistic texture brushwork. Hmmm.
So - I tried. I laid in bed for like five minutes listening to them open up the bucket o goo. And then put on the bucket o goo. And when the conversation between them seemed to involve more "ummm" than "ooooo" I decided to zombie my way in to take a look. See the texture stuff is hard. And it's one of those things that if you've spent a lot of time painting or sculpting or stuff like that, you know how to make stuff look random and yet a complete whole. I'm just saying... it's not easy. So I came in for a consultation. And it was the thought that counts. And I'm sure Rich knew that was EXACTLY what I was going to do anyway. So we played around with the stuff - they guy at Lowes gave them masonry brushes (the course things I use to do the drylock) and told them to put it on that way. But Rich had said that it looked like icing in the display at the store... and the brush wasn't doing that. Or at least not for them. It looked kind of like someone took a masonry brush and painted the wall with it. Tree bark. It looked like tree bark. So not what they wanted. I played around with the brush - still trying to find a Rich-friendly system that might incorporate Joel sleeping. I tried something that looked a lot like this and they liked it...
But then we decided it was a little too much like a ceiling treatment on the walls. So I asked them if the guy said anything about a trowel. And they said yes, he said you could put it on with a trowel. Well - if they wanted it too look like icing...then we needed a trowel. And I was probably gonna have to be the one to do it. So we got a trowel and I gave it a shot. And they really liked it. In fact, frankly, I think they 'oo'd' and 'ahhhd' extra hard so that I would get suckered into doing it. Which I did. Janice was like "ooohhh, Joel, that looks sooo nice, how do you DO that". And, less than 24 hours after failing my driver's test... I was happy for something I was good at. So, Janice and Rich glopped the stuff on the walls and I followed and troweled. It was kind of fun actually, despite how rotten I felt. See, something I'm REALLY a sucker for is group activities - it may not seem like it - but most of the time around here I'm actually not doing something WITH Rich... He goes and builds the pyramids, and I get sent off to rake sand or something. So. When we do something in the same room, I like it. Anyway - the trowel finish is kind of a faux Venetian Plaster job (I'll show you an example later on)... and frankly, it looks like the walls at Olive Garden. So, Rich told me he'll serve me meatballs in the john, and we'll save some money.
Anyway - we plastered and we all actually think it came out for the best - cuz it looks like quite the custom job. Not a desperate attempt at covering up my crappy drywall hanging debacle. :)
So that had to dry. For twenty four hours. (Remember me saying grrr... well, grrr). So we set up the Giant Fan and then moved on to other things. Or rather, I moved on to a nap. And Rich and Janice worked all out and cut dry wall for his newly created Cavern Formerly Known as Bedroom. Seriously - we could have gone spelunking. But Janice - on her OWN - (snap snap snap) - measured and cut all the sheet rock to run along that mile of ledge. And she did an awesome job. Meanwhile Rich ran all his cable and shoved eight tons of pink insulation in there. Why is insulation pink? Maybe it's just for us... do you think when we drive up they swap out all the butch brown insulation for poofy pink insulation. It just doesn't strike me as a color that occurs in ANY other aspect of construction. And that is NOT a natural color - I mean - they had to DECIDE to make it that, right? Anyway.
It was about this time that we began Po drama. Janice apparently was downstairs while Rich was running and errand...and Po was down in the theatre area. Remember how I told you that Bob and Rich said they had Po-proofed the theatre and it was safe for her to be down there. Yeah... not so much. :( So, Janice, while I'm asleep, was downstairs and she had been talking to Po who apparently was down back behind the screen. Where I have not gone... because it's icky. And I don't think it's Po proof. But Janice apparently heard Po yelp, and then went into the theatre, and she was sitting in the centre aisle. And Janice thought she was fine, checked on her, patted her....and she seemed ok. And then fifteen minutes later she was in the same place and shaking like a leaf. Janice brought her upstairs. So the first thing we figured was that she was scared by something. Gosh knows what... Rich has mentioned that he thinks there may be a cat somewhere in that coal area (since there was an open window that he and Bob had to seal up). Or maybe the giant Racoon got inside. Or maybe it was the oogey boogey ghost Rich thinks we have. But she came upstairs, and she napped with me for a while. But she didn't seem to get better. In fact she got worse. We started getting really concerned when she didn't want food. As you know, this dog could solve the middle east crisis if you offered her a twizzler. But she just wasn't acting herself. Janice tried rustling the Lays potato chip bag - usually FOOL PROOF. She breaks the land speed record normally. We tried holding a prize at the top of the stairs and she wouldn't come for it. She didn't even seem at all interested while we were eating dinner. Unheard of. And she was still very shivery. And we couldn't get her to go outside. We started getting worried it was food poisoning. Finally, when she started to groan like Marge Simpson, and Janice could NOT get her to bark (Janice was VERY concerned she was not barking... Po not barking is as unheard of as Phylica Rahsaad not thanking God in her acceptance speeches.) So with lack of barking, peeing, pooping, hopping, or eating... we felt she was in trouble. And we also noticed her tummy was very, very tense - like it was distended. So we called the Vet and their machine said to call the NE Indiana 24 Vet Emergency Hospital. Which, luckily was in Fort Wayne. So off we went on the Weiner version of ER. Despite things like this being awful and scary when they happen...it's very cute to watch Rich when Po is sick. Because Rich is not snuggly, cuddly, emotional or effusive. But when Po is sick... it's like watching Jo by her sister's deathbed in Little Women. He is a TOTALLY different person. To po. Me, he could still take or leave.
So we get there in forty five minutes...and this place was SOOOOO cool. I mean, it pretty much looked like an emergency room lobby and, luckily it was not busy at all. The vet was AWESOME. She examined her and asked us all kinds of questions. At first, because the building is old, she wondered if it could be lead paint poisoning. But we don't really have any chips of that on the floor...and Po doesn't really chew at things. Other than Rich's $100 birkenstocks when they first met. But the vet figured it out right away. As she was asking us questions about what she could have eaten (really... i mean it could have been a dead bird back there from 1947, right?), she ran her fingers along Po's back. She had po standing and got about half way down her spine and Po plopped right down. At the exact same time twice.
Po slipped a disc.
We think she must have fallen off the stage or something. It happens ALLLLL the time to weiner dogs. It happens as they start to get older, and I guess it was just a matter of time. Luckily, Po only slipped hers, and apparently they will slot back into place if you can make them rest. So even though it was sooooo sucky to watch her in pain and make her Marge Simpson groany noises, the vet said it wasn't a good idea to give her pain medication. Because you can't SAY to a dog..."um... i know you FEEL better, but that's just the pills talking...so you need to take it easy". So the only way to tell her she needed to heal, was for her to be uncomfy. To be super-sure we also got an xray done. This is one of the funniest things I have ever seen. But it was neat. It showed that Po had been given Pop Tart (Rich's desperate attempt to get her to eat something...no it was NOT a chocolate pop tart). And it showed she had gas. Big surprise.
So Po is kind of on bed rest. That night she was so sad. She didn't want to move or anything. We set her bed up with her blanket and kind of carried her around wherever we were so she wouldn't try and follow us on her own. She normally sleep with us but we set her bed up right next to the bed with a pee pad right next to that in case she decided to go. Next morning my primary concern was that she hadn't gone to the bathroom in like 12 hours... but finally Janice took her out in the afternoon when she was acting decidely more perky. Janice asked me how to carry her downstairs, and I showed her by sliding my forearm under her entire undercarriage and lifting her that way. So she took her out and she apparently released a flood. And pooped. Which Janice had not factored into her agreed lifting procedure. She was not so keen to have Po's bo-bo pressed against her inner arm after her recent 12 hour release. So she had to adopt an alternate Weiner Return Lift. But we made sure she took it very easy. In fact, I made sure we both took it easy - cuz I felt like crap too.
I am very, very, very happy to report that she is feeling much better. In fact, twenty minutes ago, she gave her first recovery bark. Janice, while this whole thing was going unfolding said, "Well, at least if there's a real problem, Winston will probably fly in a spine specialist from the Mayo clinic". It's good to have a devoted uncle :) Actually - she's feeling a little too perky - so Rich is gonna build her a ramp up to the bed so that she doesn't keep leaping around and do more damage. Cuz if she keep making it worse before she heals, she'll need surgery. :( But for now... she's recovering Po-fectly nicely.
And considering that she took a fall...it could have been a lot worse.
So - one more chapter to go to catch up. See - I told you I'd fill you in on all the skinny.