Sunday, May 27, 2007

Man of action

After a suitably lethargic Saturday, I totally kicked things up a gear today.

First up, Sweatband and I had planned on doing a bike ride this morning, but because it's been raining pretty much all day she chickened out, so we decided to meet up for coffee instead. OK, I say she chickened out, but really she's actually got a bit of a lurgy-thing, and she did run the London Marathon a few weeks back, so me calling her chicken is, quite frankly, horrifically unacceptable. And deciding to meet for coffee gave me a cracking excuse to have a bit of a lie-in, which I'd like to say I haven't done in a while, but I totally have. Whatever. I yawned like a kitten, rolled over, and dozed for an extra hour.

Anyway, we met up for a coffee in Richmond at about 11:30. Well, I say 11:30, but there was rugby on at Twickenham, which resulted in stupid traffic that delayed me a bit. When I parked up I found that Sweatband had left a series of voicemails on my phone in which she became increasingly paranoid that she'd a) got the venue wrong, and b) got the time wrong (because I'm usually super-punctual, unless I'm being fashionably late). In hindsight, I really could've messed with her head big-stylee, but I really wasn't thinking about it so I just met up with her and apologised for being late. It was quite lovely catching up, because we haven't seen each other for a while and had plenty to talk about. Oh, and I introduced her to the delights of Starbucks' grande misto – I think she was sold on it.

After a couple of hours and too many mistos we went our separate ways. On the way back to the car I saw a little squirrel. It wasn't too bothered by me being close to it, so I decided to take a photo of it. The little bugger clearly thought I was going to offer it some food, though, and came close. And closer. And closer. No word of a lie, as I was taking the picture I really began to worry that the little tree-rat might lunge at me, and too be honest I can think of nothing else that would shatter my innate coolness by shrieking like Ned Flanders as a squirrel jumped on my face.

I took the pic and scurried off.

I mean, look: his tail was twitching! He was GONNA jump!


On the way home, I did something that I've been vowing to do for well over a year now: I stopped in at Homebase and bought all the paint an' stuff I need to decorate my bathroom.

God, I can't believe it's taken me this long to sort it out. It was the only room I basically left untouched when I got Sparky Towers, because it only really needed a bit of paint slapped on the walls, and I figured I'd do it about a month after moving in. And then I was going to do it the Easter after I'd moved in. Then last summer. Then this Easter. I just. Kept. Making. Excuses. But no more! Well, actually, the thing that tipped me over the edge was that I noticed the doorframe around the front door had chipped a bit and needed tarting up, and I thought that I might as well get that sorted then just carry on with the bathroom. Understandable, huh?

So I dug out my old painter/decorator t-shirt and trackies. You can tell my painter/decorator tracky bottoms by the paint splashed on them.

And before anyone says anything untoward, that IS paint.

So I got to work, and by 'got to work' I mean that I started by daubing a small streak of paint on my face, because if there's one thing that Brush Strokes taught me, it's that painter/decorators always end up with a streak of paint on their face. Then I REALLY got to it. I sanded and washed down the porch doorframe, and gave it a first coat. Then I went up to the bathroom, and sanded all the skirting boards and the door, and anything else that needed sanding. And simply the *best* part of it all was that I finally got rid of the manky old bathroom cabinet that's been hanging on the wall since, like, forever. Seriously, it was so vile that I actually really wanted to smash it off the wall with a sledgehammer, but I figured I'd probably end up taking half the wall off with it, so I sensibly removed it like a real grown-up with a screwdriver. I also don't actually own a sledgehammer, so would've encountered problems in that respect.

I was going to post a picture of my bathroom, but it's quite small, and I really couldn't get a good angle other than one featuring the toilet and the shower curtain. I figured you already know what a toilet looks like, and don't necessarily need to see a picture of mine.

Anyway, more decorating fun shall ensue tomorrow!


I was only disturbed once during my decorating fun, and that was when my doorbell rang. Having painty hands and a wet doorframe downstairs, I decided to answer the door by hanging out of my bedroom window.

"Hello?" I glanced down to see a middle-aged woman with a quasi-beehive hairdo and elaborate spectacles.

"Oh, hello," she said. "Is this your van?" She pointed to a white van. "It's just that it's blocking my car in."

Now, I was very close to responding by saying something along the lines of "Madame! Do I look like the sort of person who would drive a white van?" but then I realised that as I was wearing a paint-covered t-shirt and had a streak of paint daubed across my face, her answer would probably have been something along the lines of "yes," and quite frankly she would've been right. So, instead, I just said no, closed the window, and went back to my painting. Then I remembered to open the window again, because I didn't want to be overcome by paint fumes, however exciting and exotic they might smell.


Dinah said...

FIRST! It's been a long time since I've called that, so I'm going to press post right now before anyone else sneaks in.

Dinah said...

Now. On to the squirrels. You DON'T want to mess with them. I used to live in Queen's Park (or near it, rather, as I didn't actually sleep on the paths), which is the home of the squirrels who think that they run the place. They will mess you up good if they want to.

Tara said...

If you had been attacked by the squirrel, that definitely would've been bloggable. Is that a word? Well I guess it is now. :D

What color did you decide to paint your bathroom? Is it white, off-white, eggshell? I don't even know what eggshell means. Congrats on getting on with the job!

Inexplicable DeVice said...

That squirrel was after your nuts.

You do eat hazelnuts or cashews as a healthy snack, don't you? Instead of crisps and sweets?

If only you had some purple drapes on you that you could have thrown over it like a net.

Tim said...

Dinah the First - Snaps to you, you go girl! (do I sound sassy there?)

Dinah the second - I don't trust squirrels. There's a glint in their eyes that just spells danger. They should all have ASBOs.

Tara - Given the choice between being molested by a squirrel and having nothing to write about, I'd choose the latter!!! Ha ha ha!!! That said, I do like 'bloggable.'

I'm going with Blossom White for the bathroom. Yeah, I know white's a bit simple, but I can't really think of any crazy colour combo that I think would go well in it.

Inexplicable Device - If only I'd had a sledgehammer to knock the little chav-squirrel clear into the next town…

Cashew? Bless you!

skillz said...

That squirrel looks evil. E-vil! A chav squirrel!

Tim said...

It was evil. Eeeeeeeeee-vil!


T-Bird said...

What's ASBO?

I am also very jealous that you have a place to decorate and sand and stuf....

Tim said...


T-Bird, just you wait - you'll find a place, and then you'll regret saying you want to sand and decorate and stuff.

Actually, I love painting. But I hate the prep work. Boo to sanding!

Bruce said...

Very funny the situation about van.
To identify a driver from an usual guy is not so easy. Most drivers prefer to wear 'casual' or 'smart casual' clothes in the evenings and at weekends. Many drivers also try to keep up appearances when they are driving. But white van man is no 'designer' addict. He may have the odd 'label' shirt, but his suit is rarely Armani and his watch is more likely to be Seconda than Rolex.
So, paint-covered t-shirt and a streak of paint across a face, is really made you owner of a van. :)

Tim said...

Bruce - Welcome! Wow - you're like a white van man anthropologist! Have you been studying them in their natural habitat? You should make a documentary like David Attenborough!

I never did find out who owned that mysterious van, and I never saw the bee-hived woman again either. Hmmm… maybe it was HER white van all along!!

Curiouser and curiouser!!