Tuesday, January 6, 2009

The Stairway Project

For the past several days I've been ignoring my brain phone messages. As far as I'm concerned I have every right to duck the issue, but when you are the actual decider it's tough to just walk away.

Now that the distractions of the holidays are over and things are almost back to normal, the pressure to decide something is growing. So I've decided to start a new project in the house and refinish the stairs.

We have some nice cypress stair steps that have needed refinishing since we moved in, and they're getting worse since Willow started sleeping upstairs in our room. Willow had always slept downstairs with Thud (poor guy; he was too arthritic to get up the stairs). We do our best to keep her from dashing up and down the stairs and we try to keep her nails rounded off. Still, the steps are getting a real beating. The polyurethane I used on the kitchen floor is really tough and should do well on the stairs.

Face it, I am a terrible decider. Whenever a difficult problem pops up I look for a new project to occupy mind until it passes. The Israeli army is still in Gaza, waiting on my word to get out or go in deeper. Escalate or withdraw. Obama's transition team is also watching and waiting and calling me night and day. The media pundits continue to advocate for one side or the other, like tired lawyers retrying the same case over and over. And no matter how much I read and study, I realize that I will never really understand what is happening, much less how to fix it.

What do I know? Cheryl and I can walk around our neighborhood day or night (though I don't like for her to go out alone). I can't imagine bombs landing in the yard or soldiers in the street. I can't imagine having neighbors who have always hated me (usually they get to know me first).

However, I do have a strategy for refinishing the stairs. I will do one side--clean, sand and finish, and I'll put a chair at the top and another at the bottom with a rope down the middle so that none of us wander into the side that is under repair. Segregate, fix one side, then the other. Simple, right?

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