Monday, November 21, 2005

Money Shots

Well, here it is, the ne plus ultra, the Final Final, at least when it comes to this bathroom. All that's left is to cough up the dough for a decent set of towels and crud up the shower with all my girly potions and unguents.

Low perspective of the kneewall, looking in from the hall:

Pressed up against the terlet, looking out of the door:

A better shot of the shower:

Shower wall (notice how the tile follows the angle of the ceiling#8212;I'll bet there was much cussing over that):

The back wall of the shower, showing the niche:

Shower pan and angled seat-like thing where I hike up my legs to shave 'em:

Another one of the seat/ledge:

Vanity (an Ikea kitchen piece which everyone thought looked like ass until the cabinets went in):

Speshul terlet with softclose seat (below wall cabinet from Target's Isaac Mizrahi line of bathroom accessories):

Some interesting notes: The crown molding, which would have been impossible to miter together because of all the angles, was actually coped with a jigsaw and fitted together (a technique I'm totally psyched to teach myself). The privacy film on the windows (necessary due to the fact that my next door neighbor's teenage daughter's bedroom window is directly across and only about ten feet away from my bathroom window) came from Ikea, and wasn't too hard to install. The equivalent stuff from Home Depot cost 10X more and didn't obscure enough, uh, "detail". It is a clear glass walled shower, after all.

So there it is. The money shot. Now I have to decide whether or not it's worth continuing the blog, considering that I ain't doing anything like that again any time soon. I guess I could post photos of cool houses in Portland (or ones that put the "bung" in bungalow) and details of other projects I'm planning. I'll have to see if the ordeal of painting crappy kitchen cabinets is a worthy enough topic to blog about.

Thursday, November 17, 2005

Not with a bang...

It's done. Final inspection has been passed, everything's working. It's actually been physically finished, intact, for weeks now, but I didn't want to post for fear of jinxing it.

Whenever I used to hear some over-bred suburban yuppie talk about how awful and stressful her latest kitchen remodel was, I would roll my eyes with derision. Talk about a first-world problem: "Wah! I couldn't fix Snotleigh and McTravesteigh mac and cheese for six whole weeks while the electricians rewired the entire house to accomodate the restaurant-quality twelve burner gas range I'll never use except to heat up jars chocolate sauce that I'll gobble down whole in the middle of the night in order to feed the growing sense of emptiness in my soul! Wah!"

Well, now I'm that whiny waste of skin. All in all, the project wasn't that bad. I got along with everyone involved (with one exception) and got a pretty sweet bathroom out of the deal. Christ, though, it took its toll. I've never been comfortable pigeonholing myself as an extrovert or an introvert—frankly, I swing back and forth between the two like a schizoprenic Courtney Love on a stripper pole. What I finally realized in a big way is that while I enjoy the company of others and can do well in social situations, I need time and space to recharge. In the mornings, when I running around getting ready for work, interruptions throw me off track and I start dreading the rest of the day. It's a trite Cathy-ism, but you really shouldn't try to talk to me before my first cup of coffee. I've managed to alienate just about every neighbor and coworker by snubbing them in the morning.

God, I hate Cathy.

Anyway, I had to be on. I had to be on and friendly and not growl at people starting at 7:30 or 8:00 in the morning and lasting into the evening. It was the evening (going into late night) intrusions that finally broke me and turned me into a shreiking she-harpy Gorgon of Doom and killed my excitement and goodwill and happy-smiliness on this project. The lesson I learned is not to put up with anything that annoys me for even a day. Because first, I'm paying these folks to come and do a job for me, and I should be able to determine when that job gets done. I mean, I have to be here from 8 to 5 (although I do goof off in the office and, well, write in my blog so maybe that's a bad reason). Second, if I keep bending over backward to accomodate people, not only will they keep doing whatever it is that's annoying me, not realizing that I'm turning into a twitchy repressed freak, I'll eventually lose my shit all over them and that's not pretty.

I also learned a lot about where my limits are, how to take what I'm being offered, that Michael is a clever, supportive man, and that while tile guys are fairly high up in the construction food chain, they are shithouse-crazy oversharers and there's a reason why they do a job that requires them to be isolated from others.

Because I haven't wanted to jinx it, I haven't taken photos since I took the painters tape off the Frameless! Shower! Doors! I promise I will take photos this weekend and post them, because it really does look beautiful. Prettier than any other bathroom because I drew the plans and picked everything and suffered through, what? nine months? of construction. It was worth it.