eglantine_br (eglantine_br) wrote,
eglantine_br
eglantine_br

Capital Improvements

Every home has quirks. They are like people. It does not matter how humble, or how large, Every place we live has something: a door that sticks maybe, or a missing part, or a window that leaks the cold air in.  Dwellings are like bodies that way, or like souls maybe. You can run around and fix things, you can mend as you go too, but there are stupid bits of strangeness that you eventually just live with.

Well. Most of the quirks here are in the kitchen. I have no idea what the builders were thinking. Our stove had knobs when we moved it. They quickly proved to be a pastework show. All the knobs proved to be useless for actual turning. You could not control the stovetop or oven with them. They just came away in your hand. So know I use a knife to turn the little metal stalks thast once held the knobs. The stovetop is fine, it is flame or not flame, and you can still make the flame bigger or smaller. The oven was a little more worrisome. But most things cook at 350 after all. That is usually halfway on the twisting knob. So I woked out where that was. I just twist the little stalk around halfway. Don't need knobs at all. (i have purchased replacement knobs of course. But they just fell off too.) Also the previous tenants took one of the oven racks when they left. There are supposed to be two but we have only one. I keep meaning to get a replacement. Have not done so yet.

But yesterday son and I went to Home Depot. (Best for Mike and me not to go together. He can spend hours there, just looking and drooling. He wants to buy the whole place up even if it means buying things we do not actually need!

And I am as bad. It is not that I want to spend money there. No, with me it is more viceral and weird. I love the smell of Home Depot. It is like the smell of my childhood. Something of sawdust, and fertilizer, and clean bigness. There was no Home Depot on the Vineyard of my childhood, but our feed store was sort of that way. (A feed store is where you go to buy bulk goat and chicken chow, and perhaps place an order for hay.) Our feed store was called SBS, it stood for Smith, Bodfish and Smith. They had different feed mixtures displayed in  actual wooden baralls made by an actual cooper. You said 'I want a hundred pounds of that' and they brought it to the car.  I used to plunge my hands in up to the wrists and feel the oats or corn or millet or whatever slide through my fingers. I usually got caught too. The feed store did not really want anyone doing that. Still I did it whenever I could. Kids are so weird. So, I am hopeless at Home Depot. I wander there blinking and breathing deeply.

So that is why it was good that I went with son. We corrected two things yesterday. We had lived all this time without a light in the fridge. I used a flashlight sometimes to find things at the back. I find a flashlight, and binder clips, and rubber bands to be kitchen things. Mike thinks that is weird. Oh, also duct tape for those inevitable times when a band-aid is not enough! ( You know how you put the band aid on and the blood just oozes through right away? Maybe you don't know The less said there the better!)

Son and i bought a refrig lightbulb.Big improvement in every way. I had not realzed how I was missing it.It makes the refrig look much less sad inside.

Also, the apartment came with a strange toilet seat that was not the right shape for the toilet. It had a sort of a prow on it that made it hard to get the bathroom door open. (NYC bathooms are tiny!) You had to sort of push it with the door or your foot to get into the bathroom. This meant that it was wobbly and unstable in use. A sitting person had the feeling that they might end up on the floor! For 6 $ we fixed that too. Big improvement.

Seems strange that these two little purchases make me so much more happy. But they really do.
Tags: family, from brooklyn
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