Sunday, February 22, 2009

The Table

Those of you who have been over to my house in the last year or so know that it's a pretty adult place, and those of you who know me well know it's the most adult place I've had thus far in my adult life.

But the card table in the dining room with the plastic tablecloth didn't really work for this.

So after many Fridays of scouring Craigslist for something wooden, not tacky and relatively cheap, I found this:

And there was much rejoicing.

But the top was a little roughed up and needed work.  Blistered.  A little unloved.

So I got my dad to send me instructions, which he did. At the beginning of the instructions was that because the panels were placed in such a way that the grain runs in different directions meant that I needed to tape off the sections and sand with the grain ONLY.

Wet sanding is the key here.  Water and some very fine grit sandpaper bring up a weird paste that is the finish that was on the table before.

Sanded in one direction.  The leaf was particularly blistered and I had to sand right down to the wood.


Sanding the other direction. This direction-switching thing took a while.

But I sanded. I sanded my little heart out.

To match the stain to the current color, I hauled the leaf into the hardware store and the clerk (cute) helped me hold it up to the samples to figure out which stain to pick.

We picked the right color.

Then comes 6 layers of polyurethane with light sanding between each layer. It's like a cake except how the smell of it kills your brain cells.

After that came furniture wax, which was difficult to apply and didn't really work the way I wanted it to.

But then, then I had a beautiful table, a table people could leave a wet glass on for a week and nothing would happen to it. $150 secondhand, $80 of refinishing gear, one weekend of work and one minor flare-up of tendonitis. Come on over for dinner.

Friday, February 13, 2009

Eating Bugs

From the NYT:

"In case you’re curious: you’re probably ingesting one to two pounds of flies, maggots and mites each year without knowing it, a quantity of insects that clearly does not cut the mustard, even as insects may well be in the mustard."

I like the idea that you'll, as they say, eat a peck of dirt before you're dead. But when I think of that, I think of, like, soil or sand or something. Clean dirt. Not so much fly eggs and rodent hair that the FDA is like, well, yeah, what are you gonna do?

Gross. Though, rich in protein!

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Trough of No Value

Hello Everyone

Do you ever think about acid-washed jeans? Or your Kriss Kross tapes?

I do. And wood paneling, and dulcimers, and weird crochet vests, and curly shoelaces, and those couches with the weird pouchy pillowy blobs for the backrest part, and chunky Mary Janes, VCRs, frosted lipstick,

They live in the Trough of No Value.

The Trough is getting smaller and smaller, however. I look forward to the future day when something can go out of fashion at the same moment that it is in fashion once again.