I told everyone I was going to build a built-in book shelf unit. I may have even thumped my chest a few times.
I told Lauren I would have the dining room (completed around 12/16)and the living room finished with their re-dos by Christmas. The Saturday before, 6 days prior to the deadline, I was ready to start the final phase of the living room. I was going to build book shelves (thump thump thump). Lauren was going to keep the kids occupied, I was going to spend the whole weekend sawing, cutting, hammering, painting and screw gunning (thump thump).
Earlier in the week Lauren and I spent an hour hand selecting the planks of finished pine, furring strips and trim. We purchased just enough to complete the design Lauren had wanted. My first order of business was to go to Mr. Jones' and use his saw. He helped me cut the 8 foot pieces of pine to the desired height I would need for the wall sides. We talked about the project and my ideas for framing the 12 inch wide shelves. He nodded in approval and told me to come back if I needed any more precision cuts. I thanked Mr. Jones and hoisted the cut planks on my shoulder and walked back to my house (thump thump).
At home I used my table top mitre saw to cut the furring strips, used for support, down to the size of the shelves. I cut two 6 foot furring strip boards into eight inch pieces (thump thump). As I started to assemble the frame of the shelves Lauren popped her head into living room.
"What are you doing?' she asked.
"Framing the shelves."
"Why are the furring strips so small?"
"I decided to cut them like this so it will support the shelf."
"Yes. But the shelf is 12 inches wide." She pointed out.
"You cut the strips to 8 inches. The strip is supposed to support the entire width of the shelf. Besides we bought just enough wood to do the project the way we discussed."
"Yes, but by cutting it shorter I saved on the wood." I said with confidence, throwing some basic but semi-fake math in her face.
"Yes, but by cutting it shorter we now will have a bunch of smaller pieces for the back support, instead of one piece that goes all the way across." She said with confidence throwing real math and geometry back in my face.
"So?" Was the only response I could muster.
"So?" Lauren asked. "It will look stupid." She answered herself.
"It won't look stupid. Who is going to notice?"
I gave her a dirty look.
Lauren changed to a softer tone. "Listen Bill, maybe I should take over this project."
"I just know that I could do a better job." Lauren said without any inclination she was going to thump her chest.
"What?" I repeated. I was offended.
"I am going to finish this job." She said.
"Look I made a mistake. It is no big deal. I can do this."
"No. I think it would be better if I did it."
I was hurt. "Fine. They didn't cover this when I went to carpenter college. Oh that's right, I didn't go to fucking carpenter college. "
"Neither did I Bill." Lauren snapped back. "But I know how to measure and cut."
She had a point.
I packed up the kids and spent the rest of the day, the weekend really, taking care of them. There would be no more macho chest thumping that weekend. Before.
I love my wife. She can build killer book shelves. I am proud of her (thump thump).