Posted in Commentary

The prettiest house a person with black lung ever had

I am convinced that my home improvement efforts are fixin’ t’kill me.  There was the drywall dust, mold, rust, and fiberglass insulation floating around my bathroom demo.  There’s whatever was in the shop vac exhaust from whatever I cleaned before the shower demo that smells like dirt every time I run it.  And in a surprise guest appearance yesterday, there was the rotting, moldy carpet and carpet pad and wooden strips under those in my office, victims of a leaky humidifier that had done far more damage than I realized, which had gone so far and smelled so disgusting that I had to remove it outright and get it out of the house.  The vacuum (which I used in initial attempts at cleaning and which now harbors that same vile aroma) may be next.  It’s in the garage at the moment.  And I find myself with a cough that won’t quit.  Day and night, there’s a tickle in the back of my throat that will not let me be, provoking my hacking up a lung on an hourly basis.

Yes, the respirator is ordered; I’ll pick it up tomorrow, and I hope it’s not too late, and that my lungs are not harboring some evil mold that is even now plotting to suffocate me eventually.  But it’s a lot of damn work, ripping out a room full of carpet, especially with all the furnishings still in the room that you have to shuffle around and then put back.  After you ignored your brother’s suggestion to cut the carpet into strips to get it out of the room more easily and instead stubbornly wrestled the barely rolled up entirety through 3 doors out into the back yard.  This, on top of a busy week with my brother and his family in town, has left me absolutely exhausted.  Last night, I was so tired, I sat on the couch with one sock and one clog on, the other sock in my hands, staring into space for a long time, trying to work up the energy to finish dressing my feet.  Whence comes this very brief missive; for any of you who have told me, or merely thought privately, that my posts are too long, this one goes out to you.  Enjoy.

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Author:

I've been doing some form of creative writing since 9th grade, and have been a blogger since 2003. Like most bloggers, I've quit blogging multiple times. But the words always come back, asking to be written down, and they pester me if I don't. So here we are. Thanks for reading.

6 thoughts on “The prettiest house a person with black lung ever had

  1. Hahaha. You’re funny when you’re short. =) Well, I find you funny when you’re long too (loved your email back to me this AM, btw! I was chortling and guffawing…you’re a genius, you are)…but I think you earned a short blog post this week.

    And yes, get that damned respirator. I’ve had to learn the hard way to approach projects appropriately, ergonomically, etc.–and that’s just computer-based projects. Respirators? Say wha?? So, yes, be wise and keep yourself healthy and around for as long as possible, please. ;o)

    All in all, is this still way better than the old “real” job? ;o) I bet your projects now have a satisfaction you couldn’t achieve except maybe in your first week of teaching way back when, back before you knew any better. ;o) I remember you writing a blog comment (or an email?) to me once saying how sometimes you get more satisfaction from emptying the dishwasher than you did from your job. =)

    Good luck finishing the projects!!

    1. I’m funny when I’m tall, too.

      I had used a lame dust mask when I was first in the bathroom, but it was a different kind than I usually use, and it sucked, and fogged up my safety goggles. (I was a vision in all that gear, lemme tell you.) My brother and his wife gave me a recommendation for a proper respirator, and I took it this time (unlike the carpet advice).

      It is better. It’s a lot better, in so many ways.

  2. Being the selfish dork I am, I must insist on you not dying. Otherwise, what would I read come Friday? Or Saturday when I never got around to reading it until just now, but you know what I mean. And besides, someone on this earth has to make a vain attempt from time to time to keep me in line. In short, no more breathing things that might kill you. Glad you got all the carpet out and didn’t use that one idiots “Febreeze” idea. Who would come up with such rubbish? So you’re funny short and tall but how about on the rocks or chilled? I’d wager a yes to both. Have a great weekend, avoid the black lung, and damn the man.

    1. Silly boy. Have you never done a bathroom renovation??? The work is never done. I was about half done with the work. I still had cleanup to do, drywall to even out (and a patch yet today), ancient vinyl tiles and even more ancient linoleum yet to pull up. Not to mention that only the top layer of linoleum came up, so I’ll be using some kind of noxious chemical stripper to get the rest of it off the cement. The respirator has already been used, and will continue to get a workout before this bathroom is done.

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