03 September 2007

Removing Sub-Baseboards

We've got a date for the new floor - October 15. That Monday, we'll have every room of the house but master bed and bath emptied out and ready to go for the tile to be ripped up and the new cement floor to be laid by Vision Concrete. They do some really beautiful work and we're very excited about finally having a floor that can be cleaned. And that isn't ungodly ugly.

Of course this means we have a lot to do around the house between now and then: prime and paint the entry; finish painting the kitchen/family room; choose colors and paint the office; remove all the baseboards and door casings. Yeah. That last one. The butt-ugly, contractor's pack moldings throughout most of the house have to be ripped out so we can replace them after the floor's done. Which in a correctly built house would mean some spot repair and touch-up of walls after ripping the molding down. In our house, it means a lot more.

See, when they built our house, it seems they didn't just use illegal day laborers for cleanup tasks, they let them do everything. Framing, plumbing, electrical, taping, painting. Hell, I'm not sure they didn't let Pedro and Paco draw up the original blueprints and do the engineering calculations for the vaulted ceilings. What I'm saying is: this house was built by functional idiots.

Today's example: the baseboards were installed before the tile floor.

Now, perhaps you don't know anything about construction. Perhaps you think that sounds reasonable. If so, perhaps you should hang out at the Home Depot weekday mornings hoping to get asked into the bed of a random pickup.

Normally, prying up baseboards is a moderately challenging and back-bending task. In this case, it's back-breaking. And when you've had holes drilled in your lamina and bits of disk material cut away, one of the things the surgeon suggests post-operatively is that you maybe not come back to see him if you can avoid it. So right now, the wife is very slowly prying up a few baseboards. She's been at it for about an hour and a half and has gotten a good section up. About twice as long as what I pulled up this morning in 30 minutes. Advantage: she won't have to put my socks and shoes on me every morning for the six weeks following surgery (again). Disadvantage: oh will she be crippled tomorrow.

This was supposed to be a productive weekend. I was supposed to complete all the painting other than the office and start the molding removal. Instead, we're hoping to have about a quarter of the baseboards (and none of the door casings) removed. Excellent.

10 comments:

Earl said...

OUTSTANDING bit of gratuitous illegal-bashing, Michelle.

I can't tell you how disappointed in you I am.

Seriously, you're not funny, just stop.

R.A. Porter said...

Don't care if you're disappointed. See, my pops put food on my table by painting houses, a job he performed quite well. If the guys they trucked in did a good job, I wouldn't care. They don't. They, for example, put baseboards on before floors.

There are plenty of jobs requiring manual labor available for people with no skills; I'd like to see them stick to those positions and leave construction to those who have ability.

Earl said...

And I'm sure it was all because your daddy spoke English.

Richard, you ignorant slut.

You could have kept the post to the fact that the people that were hired to do the labor did a poor job without going all Tancredo-Malkin. No, instead you were angry and you went racist.

You really have no idea who did the work and you thought you were being funny.

So don't even try to justify, you are no better than all those knee-jerk neo-Archie Bunkers in RedStateLand, so stop acting like you are.

R.A. Porter said...

Okay Nathan. Continue to show your ignorance of construction practices in the southwest. That's fine by me.

I wasn't trying to be funny, as I'm reasonably certain no construction tasks were performed on my house by anyone whose SS# wasn't 111-11-1111. I'm frustrated by it, not because I begrudge anyone the American dream, but because I resent having to deal with the consequences of hiring unskilled laborers to perform craft. Could those unskilled laborers hanging out at the Home Depot have been citizens? Sure. Seems unlikely, but it's possible.

I'm also impressed by how quickly you resorted to ad hominem attacks. That would be your first sentence of your first comment. Comparing me to Malkin is a very cogent and comprehensive argument. Keep it up.

Earl said...

Goddamn you even argue like a Republican, "ad hominem"?! Only pussies whine about ad hominem attacks, usually when someone has called their crap for what it is.
Run to your damn mother with ad hominem.

No, you weren't trying to be funny, and I'm sure you weren't trying to be racist either. But what you wrote was incredibly racist.

Look I don't flipping care how houses get built anywhere--what I object to your quantum logic "illegal day labors = Pedro and Paco = let them do engineering calculations = functional idiots" Showly there was a white fo-man oversee'n the work, massa porter?

Make up your damn mind, either I'm drawing a comparison or it's an ad hominem, it can't be both. If you don't want ad hominem attacks (which I guess calling you Michelle somehow qualifies), you'd rather I engage in broadbased racial stereotyping. Ok, just what I'd expect from a hypocritical Jew.

R.A. Porter said...

You led off by insulting me, as opposed to debating my statements. You clearly have issues with what I said; perhaps you might have led with those. Or does my "broadbased racial stereotyping" disqualify me from respectful debate?

As for the rest of your thoughts...okay, how about I go with:
legal day laborers = Johnny and Jimmy = let them do eng. calcs = functional idiots. Would that be better for you? As I said, maybe you're right. Maybe at the end of your magical rainbow were a group of long-time citizens of European descent who were barely qualified to push a broom. They still fucked up my house, as they fuck up every house they build.

I'm just guessing based on who I see waiting for pickup pick ups who really built my house. I'll stop doing that. Maybe I'm driving by too late. Maybe all the white dudes have already jumped in a truck. So maybe my house was built by incompetent white day laborers born in the US. I'll remember that.

I'd say I'd be more sensitive in the future, but you know I don't give a shit about anyone but myself. I've never considered anyone else's feelings before so I don't imagine I'll be starting now.

Earl said...

Uh, yeah saying outrageously inflammatory things pretty much disqualifies you from respectful debate, and you shouldn't get your delicates all bunched when people call you on it, and you shouldn't expect them to engage you half as civilly as I've tried to here. And yes if I went ad hominem, I had to, because you just don't understand how deeply offensive that was. I'm thinking you would've had better sense about not writing that paragraph if the names were Amos and Andy instead of Pedro and Paco, but I've been wrong before. And really, I'm not trying to go all PC thought-police here, but just because it's *true* doesn't make it an acceptable statement in public--just ask Michael Ray Richardson about his Jew lawyers--that kind of logic is espoused by 8-year olds and oh, yeah, racist bastards.

I really don't know how I insulted you, your post IS gratuitous bashing--there is absolutely no provable correlation between the alleged, though probable, illegal-ness of the workers and the quality of the work they did. Instead of choosing the homebuilding company or the (probably white) contractor as a target of your angst, you chose the least culpable and responsible people in the labor chain. Again, why not blame the money-grubbing... homebuilder for chintzing on labor costs?

As to debating your statements, your shoddy writing makes that nearly impossible. You should try outsourcing or subcontracting. If you want a critical analysis, what does the fact that the baseboards were installed pre- or post-tile have to do with the back-breakingness of the work (the main point of the post) What does it matter that the baseboards were a) ugly b)installed by retarded illegals have to do with how hard the work is? I have no idea, because you didn't write about that, thus the gratuitous illegal-bashing comment. Maybe there was carpet first and the tile was installed by a previous owner, who contracted out to his lazy-ass and white brother-in-law who didn't feel like pulling up the baseboard first?

Instead, you complain about the condition of your back--so I can only guess the workers' crime was not having the foresight to install the baseboards at eye-level to make it easier for some non-functional person to yank them out later.

But seriously, I'm supposed to care about your feelings when you don't give a shit about anyone else? And then you cry ad hominem?
That is absolutely freaking pathetic. Hate hurts?

R.A. Porter said...

Yah. Again, you're showing not just your ignorance of construction practice, but the realities of dealing with it. If the baseboards were installed at the - you know - base, then prying them off would be a relatively simple practice that, while it would require some discomfort from position, I could accomplish in short order. It's pretty hard (read: impossible without bending nails and yanking the pieces above the tile-level) to pry when there's grout covering its bottom 1/8th of an inch. As for the carpet v. tile question, the tile is original.

You want me to bitch about the money-grubbing homebuilder. I'd be happy to do so; however, he didn't perform the work. He just hired incompetents to perform the labor. I'm more content bitching about the proximate cause of the incorrectly installed baseboards. You of course may rail about the systemic problems to your heart's content.

Yes Nathan. I get it. We can't all be great writers like you. My shoddy writing just wasn't clear enough. I'll be sure to work on that.

As for my feelings...I don't, frankly, give a shit about anyone else, so I certainly don't give a shit what anyone else says about me. I was trying to help you out by suggesting that you might want to tighten up your debate style a bit. Feel free to ignore my advice.

Earl said...

I'm not here to fucking debate you, Jerry. I'm here to point out you are a racist fucktard. And when dumb people like you spout blatant hate, Queensberry rules no longer apply.

Again my ignorance is PERFECT justification for you being a racist asshole. IT IS IRRELEVANT you dumb prick. Just as the immigration status/race of the worker is IRRELEVANT, unless of course, you are RACIST.

Seriously, debate me on the merits, would you've written the same thing had it been Amos and Andy instead of Pedro and Paco?

Feel free to be a racist asshole, just own up to it--have the courage of your convictions--or are you yet another closeted Republican?

R.A. Porter said...

You know, I was going to defend myself, but I'm tired of this little discussion.

Fine, Nathan. I'm a racist.