Wednesday, October 06, 2004

Don't Tread On Me

We have lived in our home for more than five years and have never initiated a home improvement project more severe than cleaning the lint screen on the dryer. Our rather sedentary home ownership style is a direct result of the fact that I am scarcely handy enough to wipe my ass, let alone engage in full-blown home maintenance. Combine my 10 thumbs with Hot Wife’s venomous resistance to spending money and what you have is a home that looks strikingly like the outhouse from Little House on the Prarie.

Today, however, is a landmark day at Evans World Headquarters. As I blog, a crew of brave souls is removing the dog-piss-stained, Juicy-Fruit-encrusted, mildewed carpet that spans the width of our abode and replacing it with a pristine sheet of light tan, stain-resistant perfection. Can I get an Amen?

The newly departed carpet has been the bane of our home for years. Once, when I was a child, we were invited for dinner at the home of a family friend. In the middle of their white carpet was a gargantuan, red stain allegedly left by a spilled cup of strawberry soda (it looked more like a crime scene to me). I have never forgotten that stain. And I’m certain that any pour soul who has visited our home in the last several years will not forget the makeshift shrine to dog urine that proudly rings the area of carpet behind our living room couch. Once when I was wrestling back there with Left-Handed, Power-Hitting Son, I noticed that my face had landed right in the middle of the pee stains. I threw up in my mouth.

Alas, the embarrassment that was our carpet is on its way to a landfill. And the imminent beautification of our home has inspired Hot Wife and me to enact the following set of New Carpet Rules for the kids to follow, lest they be shipped off to a sweatshop in Bangladesh to make Nikes for 12 cents an hour:

1) There will be no eating, drinking or chewing of gum in any carpeted area of the house.

2) There will be no urinating, defecating, spitting, wiping of picked boogers or removing of one’s diaper on the carpet (that goes for you, too, Weak-Bladdered Dog). Farting and belching are permitted. This isn’t China.

3) Whenever possible, shoes will be removed before walking on the carpet. This rule will be ignored when there are guests in our home because we don’t want anyone thinking we’re weird.

4) Left-Handed, Power-Hitting Son will no longer practice “sliding into home” on the carpet. We won’t have enough Clifford The Big Red Dog bandages to cover the rugburns you’ll get from real, live carpet.

5) All writing implements – crayons, chalk, markers, pasta sauce, Easy Cheese, pencils, phlegm, etc. – will remain no fewer than 25 yards away from the new carpet at all times. An alarm will be installed to monitor the proximity of these items to the DuPont Stain Master Plus. Any child who triggers the alarm will be restricted from watching Barney and/or forced to bat right-handed for five years.

Hot Wife and I are experiencing differing anxieties over this upgrade. She’s concerned that the carpet won’t look good (see: our recent master bathroom remodel, which melds orange tile with light blue accents in a striking design that approximates the bell-bottoms Jimmy Walker used to wear on Good Times).

My issue is that the new carpet smell won’t be strong enough for me to cop a buzz. And if you know how much new carpet costs, you know why a buzz is absolutely necessary.


At 12:11 PM, Blogger Bellerina said...

You crack me up! I had to go through so much trouble just to sign up and login to make a comment on your site! Jeez... I didn't know half of what I was doing when I had to sign up..what's a URL site? I just made up an address?? was I supposed to do that? Anyhow congrats on the new carpet! I was laughing out loud reading about your rules...

At 3:21 AM, Blogger Tiger said...

Having gone through various options to replace our current borderline "little house" hardwood floor (it kind of looks as if it could BE that old, really :) hardwood, carpet? Tile? Yeah. I know a buzz would be an absolutely necessary thing. LOL... (from one Hot Wife who also hates to spend money and happens to kinda LIKE that old "little house," worn, wooden floor... besides... pet urine washes right up from a hardwood floor y'know? :)

At 3:36 AM, Blogger jerusalemgypsy said...

Aren't I glad I moved to Israel with 5 kids and have traditional stone floors.....Love your blog


At 8:33 PM, Blogger jennifer maniatis said...

The best part was "I threw up in my mouth." I lost it! You rock!


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