Tuesday, April 14, 2020

Painting. Ugh

UNTIL MONDAY, I had never actually painted a wall. In fact, the only other time I can recall painting at all was the garage door of 2351 Rosewood SE in Grand Rapids, Michigan in the summer of 1980. A friend of my father, Abe DeVries, came over and showed me how to do it. I vaguely recall it was a pain and I wasn't very good at it.

We are on Week 4 of home confinement, so Sheryl suggested we do something constructive with our time - the Corona Project! We decided to paint the inside of the house. It has had this drab taupe color on the walls since we moved in 11 years ago. For some reason, we had a ton of painting supplies and even a massive bucket of paint. So off to paint we went.

We began Monday in the laundry room/front room. First came the cleaning of the walls, then the taping. The taping was horrible. You would think it would be easy to just line up the tape along the edge and go straight. Except I'm straight-challenged, apparently. "Just remember, this is your practice room," Sheryl said repeatedly. Thank goodness.

Am I even close to doing this right?
We finished with taping. We started by painting in the hard to reach spots, places a roller wouldn't fit. Sheryl went to get more supplies and trim paint, leaving me alone. THAT was a huge mistake, and I ended up gunking the walls with too much paint and painting parts the roller would have done just fine.

Fortunately, it was still really wet when she came home and we fixed most of the issues, save for a few drip marks here and there. It took three coats of paint to get it looking even and not splotchy so hopefully I will do better in the rest of the rooms.

Then came the lesson in "Zen Painting," where you let the paint and the brush do the work. I was pushing too hard and smearing globs, rather than rolling on the paint. "You are going to give yourself a heart attack," Sheryl said. "Lightly. Lightly. Roll. Roll. Easy peazy."

After that it went a lot smoother. We let it dry overnight and Sheryl even cleaned the carpets and painted the front windows sill, which had been destroyed by dogs starting with Lucy and Bella a decade ago.

This morning we took the tape off and touched up a few spots. The walls are a creamy and light buttery color and they look really good, if we do say so ourselves. It isn't perfect, but for a non-painter and a wife who somehow hasn't been driven mad by her idiot husband, it will do.

The good part is that we have one room done. The challenging part is that there are two rooms at least to go, and that's not including the upstairs. Actually, I'm becoming a paint snob because I'm looking at the upstairs rooms and whoever painted them 11 years ago did not do a very good job. Geesh. You mean there are other people who can't tape walls and drip instead of brush too?

Next up is the living room and dining room. There is a big hole in the front wall from the dogs pushing the couch into it when the mail person goes by, so Sheryl has a plan to fix it before we start. It involves drywall and power tools, so maybe I'll help by staying out of the way.

But when the wall is fixed, I will attempt to tape and hopefully use my inner Paint Zen Master to do a better job.

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