Adventures in Shopping

So far, it has been a very strange day.  I will say that, although I am very happy at the hard working contractors and their willingness to put in extra time to get the job done (GIT ER DUN), I am starting to get very TIRED of having people in the house all the time.  The noise level is high, no matter what task they are accomplishing.  Between the tile saw, regular saws, Shop Vac, hammers, floor scraper or what-have-you, and the near-constant LOUD VOICES USING THE OPPOSITE OF POSITIVE REINFORCEMENT, the noise is getting to me.  For two days, a tiler was here, and he whistled the entire time.  THE ENTIRE TIME.  He whistled little off-tune songs, and it just kept going.  Finally I thought I would turn on some music in an attempt to drown out the whistling.  This turned out to be a mistake of epic proportions.  The tiler proceeded to whistle along to the music, but NOT WELL.  By the time my husband got home from work on Friday I had already had worked my way through the beers in the fridge and was frantically opening a bottle of wine.  Then – THEN – the tiler showed up to work before eight o’clock on Saturday morning, while I was still in the shower.  Fortunately my husband was home but the tiler saw me in my robe, which is always an awkward situation.  A friend thought maybe I could write about it a la 50 Shades of Tiling but NO. 

I’m going a bit crazy here.

In any event, I have been tasked with the choosing of a mirror, light fixture, and various towel rack implements.  My job, as given to me by the head contractor, was to go to Home Depot and choose all these things, write down the SKU numbers, and then report back in order for him to purchase them.  It seems a little, I don’t know, could we cut out the middle man here, but yet I am an obedient renovator and so I do as I am told.  I headed to the Home Depot this morning – after a routinely unpleasant, but not excessively so, trip to Walmart – and I will say this: there are no adjectives to adequately express how poorly equipped I am for a solo trip to Home Depot.  For one thing, I am only recently able to go to Costco on my own without heart-pounding anxiety that I am going to die from crushing by falling warehouse objects.  For another thing, I am easily overwhelmed.  Trips to places like Bed, Bath and Beyond, for me, start off with the simple need for a toothbrush holder, and end up with me wondering if I need a three-tiered shoe rack or a Jelly Belly ice shaver/syrup set; then I get so overwhelmed by the choices and massive amount of landfill-destined items that I leave empty handed, and still in need of a toothbrush holder. 

In any case, I headed to Home Depot, assuming a confidence that I didn’t feel, and I found the department that had the bathroom fixtures.  I immediately phoned my husband at work, near tears, saying I didn’t know how I could possibly choose a mirror.  I started to unravel, like if I chose the wrong mirror the consquences would be dire indeed: the entire renovation would be for naught, all our money and time will have been wasted, and we may as well have kept our mouldy old bathroom.  He talked me off of the mirror-choosing ledge (“Sweetie, I’m going into a meeting.  Can we talk about this later?”) and then I proceeded to raise the suspicions of many, many Home Depot employees by walking around shakily photographing things on my iPhone and making notes of the SKU numbers.  “Can I HELP you?” the orange-aproned people kept asking me, to which I responded, cheerfully “No thanks!”.  They probably thought I was one of those secret shoppers, or maybe a spy from Lowe’s. 

To add to the strangeness of this day, I brought the boys home for lunch and Jake scarfed down a sandwich, a glass of milk, and then requested half of a Caramilk bar that he had been saving.  Sure!  Why not!  After he scarfed that down and I was driving them back to school, Jake mentioned, casually, that he was going to barf.  The bees are doing what now?  I pulled over and let Jake out, when he barfed in the gutter like a miniature drunk.  Meanwhile, Mark kept asking, “Are you almost done barfing?  I don’t want to be late for school.”  Points for punctuality, although maybe not for empathy.  Although I knew he wasn’t sick, he had just eaten too quickly, I of course wasn’t going to send my just-barfed kid back to school.  So I dropped Mark off after extracting promises that he would pick up Jake’s backpack and spelling homework, and took my now-fine kid home.  Even though I had plans to pick up milk and fruit, and I still needed a goddamn toothbrush holder.

I settled Jake on the couch with a blanket and the “Quackbusters” movie, when the head contractor came to talk to me.  He told me, very seriously, that they had finally removed the toilet from the upstairs bathroom and now all the contractors would have to use the downstairs bathroom.  Which is fine, of course, except that things are a little awkward when I am working on the computer and not twenty feet away from me someone is having a bowel movement.  And doesn’t use the fan.  Which is what just happened.

I’m just saying, this has been a very strange day.  And it’s only 2:30!  I can’t wait to see what the dinner hour brings. 


  1. BusyMomofTwins says

    Oh dear! That is a strange day. Wish I lived closer or I would happily accompany you on your shopping expeditions. That is my forte! Pooping contractors not so much. Hang in there. It is going to be SO worth it. Since I cannot be there, take a deep breath look at all the options for mirrors and fixtures, take a deep breath and go with your gut. Pick the one that you love, in your price range. Thankfully no one has ever died (to my knowledge) from picking the wrong mirror.

  2. Oh, I don’t like the idea of contractors using my toilet. Ewww.

    The shopping trip to Home Depot though is *so* up my alley. Wish I could go with you.

  3. Oh my lord. I feel for you,and I am laughing at the same time..Sorry and Thanks. Jeepers. Nothing like having CHOOSING and puking child all in the same day. Really, it will get better. (and you’ll have a fricking nice kitchen)

  4. Ew, barf.

    I hope your day gets less strange.

  5. Ugh due to a toilet going sideways on us we had to remodel our bathroom last summer by surprise. I nearly burst into tears in the tile store because I just could not look at one more tile. I made my husband pick out fixtures because I just hate that crap. I don’t really care. I get overwhelmed like some kind of example case in The Paradox of Choice book and just want to close the door to the bathroom and never use it again. What I’m saying is I feel our HD pain.

    Also this will not let me leave my name. This is Maggie bitching about remodeling.


  1. […] was still better than the Home Depot-related trauma I suffered last year when we were doing our renovations and I was tasked with picking out […]

Leave a Reply