Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Coincidence, Shomincidence, It’s a Plot.

Coincidence, Shomincidence, It’s a Plot.

Do you believe in coincidences? No such thing. I don’t think I am being paranoid and you won’t either, once you hear this story.

My wife Barbara has been clamoring for a new kitchen for a while now.  I have been resisting on the grounds that the old kitchen is quite acceptable and is great shape due to the lack of use (we maybe eat at home once a week).

Nevertheless, she has been pressing her case and gotten support from traitorous members of the family who shall be nameless.  I figured I had about two more years until having to give in because we never agree on color, style or any decorating very quickly.  It once took us 6 months to pick a wall color that we could both agree on.

About a month and a half ago, everything changed.

We went to Orlando to meet my daughter and her family.  While away, our second bathroom toilet leaked. 

When we got back, we discovered the leak, fixed it, but found our laminate floor had been damaged.  We thought the damage was confined to a small area and we could just replace that area with some extra laminate we had saved.  We called in a contractor we use, and he agreed to try.  I went to work; Barbara went to the grocery store.

When she returned home, she was horrified to discover all the laminate was taken up. 

Once the contractor started working on picking up the few pieces we thought were damaged, he discovered the water had spread throughout the laminate flooring.

We still had laminate in the living room/pool hall, so we either had to get the same laminate or put down tile.  We couldn’t get the same laminate anymore so tile it was.  The problem was we had tile in the kitchen and dining room.  This tile would butt up against the new tile.  It would have to match.  No such luck, the old tile would have to be removed, so the new tile would be put down everywhere and match.

We filed an insurance claim and were pleasantly surprised they agreed to give us money towards replacing the laminate. Not the tile, but the laminate.  We were on our own picking up the old tile and putting down new tile where the old tile had been.   

We contemplated picking out new tile.

Barbara saw her chance to get a new kitchen out of this. She pounced... 

“Since the old tile was being taken up, wouldn’t it be a great time to change the kitchen. We could do it all at once and only be inconvenienced once,” she asked. 

I tried to ignore her logic, but it did have reasoning behind it since we would have to remove the cabinet to replace the kitchen tile. 

We seemed to be committed. 

We now had concrete floors where the laminate had been, so there was some urgency.  Like I said, it usually takes us months to decide on colors, etc. We had no such luxury now.

We picked out the tile in 2 days and picked the cabinets the next day by accident.  We were in a tile store, having just picked out tile, and saw cabinets we liked.  We took them.

We notified the contractor to start working.  He came that week; jack hammered out the old tile, and removed the cabinets and sink.  

There was dust everywhere, and no place to eat at home.  No difference there, except for breakfast, which I did usually eat at home.  McDonalds and the bagel places immediately benefited from our lack of eating breakfast at home.

Our next task was to find granite to use on the counter top.  I refused to pay a fortune but wanted something nice.  We spent a couple of weeks looking around and finally found a slab that looked like marble but was granite, at a reasonable price.  We also bought a microwave, which we don’t use, to match the stove we never use.

I thought we were done, dreamer that I am.

“We need a new buffet piece,” Barbara said.

“Why is that?” I inquired.

“When the toilet leaked, the water came through the wall behind the buffet and ruined it” she replied.

I love that buffet, I designed it and had it made for us.  It was unique.

“I can get it repaired for about $100” I rejoined.

“Its old fashioned and we need a new one to match the modern look we are getting in the kitchen” Barbara countered.

“Really….,” I said, “but I love that buffet”.

“Get over it. It’s so 70’s looking. We need a new one,” she insisted.

In for a penny, in for a pound.  A new buffet it is.

We finally are nearing the end of our construction and I can finally eat breakfast at home.

The contractor laughs every time Barbara says she needs to add something to make cooking easier (everyone knows her history of cooking at home), and Barbara has her list of things for him to do.  I don’t foresee an early end to the work.

My original budget has been cast aside like yesterday’s trash.  Barbara goes blithely, on adding new items to her list, all of which add cost.  The money train has left the station far behind.

This whole local stimulus to the economy started with a toilet leaking. 

I would like to point out, that my wife’s biggest ally for the new kitchen had arranged for us to be away when the leak conveniently occurred.  If we had been home, we would have spotted the leak in time.

 I’m not saying foul play was involved, or a conspiracy was hatched; but nevertheless, it is suspicious as to the timing, don’t you all agree?  (This is the part where you all agree I am not being paranoid.)

When I mention this to Barbara, she giggles and looks away.

I am considering billing that unnamed person for the cost.