Monday, July 26, 2010

Dream Building

chicken coop
Originally uploaded by mygothlaundry
It has been hot the last couple of weeks - you have probably noticed this - and I have been losing weight, which is nice. It seems to go away in the form of sweat, which is arguably less nice, but, hey, as long as it's departing, converting, one assumes, itself into some kind of energy or possibly the speed of light (I never made it all they way through the Tao of Physics) then whatever. And it's a learning experience, because in order to remove the sweat, I'm pursuing a kind of practical doctorate in fan placement.

Everyone who lives in the tropics without air conditioning - and, let's face it, as we move into the 21st century we're all living in the goddamn tropics, now and forevermore - becomes a fan expert and I am no exception. This house has a whole house fan, which is a hidden thing in the ceiling of the hallway, protected by louvers that open up when I flip a switch and start the dull yet comforting roar that means the house fan is on the job. In temperate weather, running that thing at night is enough to cool the house off nicely but it's not enough when it's this hot. Therefore, I've been adding fans. Window fans, box fans, the big round fan in the basement that my son will not relinquish no matter how much I try to bribe him. The fans have to be placed just so and I think about this a lot - probably too much - in order to maximize air flow from one room to another. Also, nobody is allowed to close any doors lest precious coolness be thwarted and the fans, which must be turned on as soon as it cools off outside, must then be turned off before 9 am. This is key, although my children sometimes just flat fail to see the drastic importance of all this. I feel like a personal failure on mornings when it's hotter inside than outside - unfortunately, that's a lot of mornings lately. You see, if it's over 85 in your house when you wake up it means that the day is going to basically suck. This is one of the laws of thermodynamics and thus immutable.

Thinking about air flow is like thinking about carpentry projects, which is what I do while I'm going to sleep. On nights when I have trouble going to sleep I think about other things as well (not THAT. Well, okay, sometimes THAT.) like walking through every house I've ever lived in and long railway journeys through Siberia and what it would be like to live on a spaceship but mostly I think about things I could build and how I could build them. I never actually build any of the things I think about but I am telling you, they would completely rock if I ever got around to it.

Right now I am thinking about shelving every inch of the room that has finally, with the throwing out of the old couch and the subsequent moving of the daughter downstairs, become my workroom / studio / office. I went so far as to go and look at how much it would cost to do this project (like $100, or, in other words, more than I am going to spend) and I even, on that exploratory voyage to Lowes, broke down and bought a drill motor. Yes, that is what most people call one of those electric cordless drills, but my ex husband, who is concerned with the nomenclature of tools, drilled into me that it was in fact a drill motor. Ha ha! A little hardware humor, there! Shoot me now. I'm glad I have it, though. It makes me feel macho and competent, as tools always do, and I like to push the trigger and listen to it go RRRRRRR. I would like it more if it hadn't just stripped out the first couple of screws I was trying to get it to turn - I think you do after all have to drill holes first, which is such a pain in the ass, particularly when you neglect to buy drill bits - but it will be really handy when I get around to making things. Houses. Shelves. Furniture. And other nifty stuff.

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