Aug 25, 2006

U.Y.C.U.P. Part II: In which I Underestimate Jeff Vaughan

You already know that I'm the snarky one. In the absence of contrary data, I assume things won't work the way they're designed to, people will mess up causing me grief, and that taxi will run the red light and knock me off my bike. It's a condition that alternately harms my outlook and prevents me from danger and disappointment. But anyway.

A few weeks ago, I was riding my bike home and passed by a set of rowhouses at 15th and Naudain or thereabouts. There were some people standing around, and I realized one of them was T.J.'s friend Nick, but didn't have time to process and wave before passing by... I also barely perceived that one of the dudes sitting on the stoop was my husband. I got a few houses down the alley, wheeled around and came back to confirm.

So these guys are all sitting/standing around staring at a rather comely mid-century sofa sitting on the sidewalk. After talking with them for a few moments, I got the briefing:

1. The sofa was Jeff's grandmother's and he's very attached to it.
2. We are standing in front of Jeff's house.
3. These guys have been struggling to get the couch in by
    a. shoving it up the stairs but it was too long to turn
    b. hoisiting it up on a rope to the 2nd story window
    c. preparing to cut the thing in two and then repair it
        i. they are waiting for Jeff to get the jigsaw
        ii. They have already started surgery on the fabric bottom to         get to the frame

After I processed all the information, I suggested that what they were doing was going to result in wrecking the couch. Ordinarily, I wouldn't have cared so much, but it was a nice looking couch! A nice looking couch is a rare thing. I pointed out that if they were going to mortally wound the couch and leave it out on the sidewalk to die, they might as well leave it out on the sidewalk with a "free" sign and let someone have it. Jeff had me refer to point (1) which stated that he's really attached to the couch because it was his grandmother's.

As a result of all this negotiating, I told Jeff and T.J. to put the sofa in the Volvo and take it to the Hazel Avenue Estate for short-term storage until they could figure out where to keep it. I was secretly hoping Jeff would leave it for a year or so, and take me up on my offer to borrow a smaller couch of ours, because I totally liked this couch. In any case, I remember doing my usual muttering about boys being knuckleheads and how the whole couch situation was clearly a geometrical no-go from the beginning, and duh it's so obvious, et cetera.

Well, yesterday, T.J. and Jeff went over to get the couch again, and I heard the whole story after the fact. Jeff had gone to the Lowes and bought a beam to stick out the third story window. Who buys a beam? A single beam? I guess it was a long 6x6 or something. He set the beam out the window and had some people sit on it on the inside end. Then, he used the two pulleys he had bought and attached on the other end, hoisted the couch right-side up (not the long way) with relative ease, and guided it through the window.

I underestimated Jeff! I consider myself a person with a lot of determination, and I will NEVER let a problem go unsolved even if there's no obvious way to solve it. But I would not have gone to the store and spent $50 on materials towards a scientific and multi-pronged attack on the gravitational and geometric couch challenge. I just wouldn't have.

I hereby eat crow and boys are not dummies and Jeff is clever and all that good stuff.


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