Saturday, April 01, 2017

Taking Zero Crap From Anyone and Asthma

Been a crazy day and I'm about to go crash till morning.

I've slept in really late the last three mornings. My insomnia finally broke and I've been in the bed 12 hours a night for the last three nights. So I was a big late getting up before one of the contractors we'd gotten an estimate from was stopping by with the head guy from his painting crew to discuss and schedule the painting of the entire interior of the house. We're gotten all the wallpaint off save for the border on the upper soffit area of the kitchen. I put that border up almost 28 years ago when we first moved in and when I tried to remove it after 11 years it wasn't going anywhere, resisting all efforts to remove. It's still there, so we had to tell the painters that they would definitely need to remove that particular paper with the steamer.

So Jim is talking to the guys and I'm sitting in my office working on No Longer Quivering when I hear one of the two guys in the painting company suddenly start to claim that the wallpaper border had been put up wrong. Another one of those blood boiling moments. I was out of that chair, across the house and yelling at those guys that I DID NOT INCORRECTLY INSTALL THAT WALLPAPER and right into a rant. I'd used wallpaper sizing on the wall and I've even sanded a few spots perfectly smooth, used the right glue. The paper fit perfectly. It looked lovely for years, I actually tired of looking at it when I discovered I could not remove it and I merely papered right over it.

I realized about five minutes into the rant that I could almost hear the painting guys balls retracting up into their bodies. I know I shocked them, but quite frankly I'm pretty sick of guys thinking that there is no way a woman could possibly ever do something in the building trade right. For years I was the one in our family holding the plumbers wrench, paint brush and hammer. My father taught me how to do these things as a girl, whereas my husband Jim is someone my Dad always referred to as 'The Nutty Professor' - intellectual, educated and filled with book smarts, lacking even a lick of common sense and ability in things like that. Well, he does have common sense in some ways, just not in anything to do with house maintenance and repair.

Through the years I'm the one that not only did the home repair but I'm also the one that called the professionals in when something was clearly beyond my changing out a light fixture, painting, wallpapering and miscellaneous plumbing abilities. I can change the wax seal out on a toilet, unclog a toilet, change out a sink and run a snake with the best of them.

So I'm the one that will likely be supervising these guys. I think they just had a rude awakening about me, realizing I can be the stern taskmaster and I don't take ridiculous stereotyping from men. Poor little woman. I might only be five foot three inches but I pack a whole lot of stubborn in my short size.

I have a close friend that's also doing a house remodel and she's shared her frustrations with sexist building trades people who try to treat her like the helpless brainless little woman. I doubt I'm going to have that problem again with these guys. I don't get treating your female clients this way. Our money is just as green and spends just as well as that paid by men. This is being paid for by our joint savings, which both of us have contributed to.

I have noticed that most of the contractors we've gotten estimates and work from automatically defer to my husband Jim, which is hysterically funny because he's stated again and again that he hates dealing with these kinds of things and to pick out what I think would look best. I ran around with the measurements and got the kitchen redo estimates, but I dealt entirely with women, female interior designer and staff and women in the kitchen remodel studio. I'm glad I did because this is coming together beautifully in the house. I'm sorry someone else is coming in to rent the place and get the full advantage of my planning.

But I should have known if I get insta-angry I'm due for an asthma attack. The mood shift has started to become the most accurate pre-attack warning now. I'm going to start measuring my oxygen levels when I start getting like that. The attack did come a few hours later. It came right on schedule just after lunch and just like that the day was mostly over for me. I excused myself from our guest (friend of Jim's from work) and spent most of the day pushing in meds and doing the caffeine thing.

Amusing note with the guest. Very introverted guy who seems emotionally stuck back in the 1950s. He turned to me after my asthma attack and asked me if I'd ever tried marijuana for my asthma. He's the last person I would ever have thought might come up with that solution. You just never know about people.

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