When redecorating begins, no room is safe

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The other night I was telling my wife about the deer I had nearly hit while driving home from work in the middle of the night.

I often see deer in fields alongside the highway, but this one had leapt over the guardrail and was calmly standing on the pavement, just outside the white line that borders the road. When I whizzed by at 55 mph, perhaps three feet from it, the Deer of Near Doom didn't budge.

"Three more feet, and you would be missing me now," I told my wife, knowing she would want to worry about my near-deer experience.

"And the forest would be missing a deer," she said without hesitation.

"You always take the deer's side," I grumbled, and left the room.

Despite that, I know my wife loves me. She shows it in a lot of ways. In other ways, however, I am convinced she is trying to kill me, or at least confuse me.

Recently retired, she is deep in the throes of a home-decorating frenzy. A few weeks ago I went home in the evening and found her in the master bathroom. It was in such a state of disrepair that, had I made the mess and blamed it on, say, a rampaging deer, she would have taken the deer's side.

"Is the bathroom getting bigger, or what?" I asked, looking around.

She sighed and pointed to the large plastic bag on the floor that was stuffed full of wallpaper - wallpaper that had decorated the bathroom for the past decade that we know of, and probably for the decade before that.

I looked at the walls, which were white wallboard missing huge patches of wallpaper.

"We're missing huge patches of wallpaper," I pointed out. "So the room really is larger."

"Thanks for noticing," she said. "It's been like this all week."

"Oh."

To me, a bathroom always has been a vacation spot, not a stop on a museum tour.

It was then I saw she also had removed the cabinet doors and drawers, sanded down the wood and repainted everything a different color. The doors still were missing and all the hinges, knobs and light-switch plates were lying there in their own little baggies.

"Is supper ready?" I asked.

She sighed again.

"It sure does smell bad in here," I added, hoping to steer her safely to the kitchen.

"The smell is from all the chemicals for removing the old paper and for cleaning and painting," she explained.

I looked at a corner of the room: "Has that wall always been yellow?"

"No, that's the new color I'm going to paint the room. That is a test patch to see how it looks."

"And you're sure it hasn't always been yellow?" I asked.

"Positive."

I looked around.

"You know, I kind of liked the way it's always been," I said.

"You didn't even know what it looked like," she said. "You thought it was yellow."

"Well, I just didn't see anything wrong with the wallpaper."

"What color was it? What was the pattern?"

"Let's not confuse the issue," I said. "I just don't see the need for changing the room unless the wallpaper is on fire or something. The next thing I know, you'll be wanting to relocate the bathtub over to that wall."

She sighed again. She sighs a lot. I think it's from inhaling all those paint fumes.

That's when I noticed the shower was bare.

"Where's the curtain?"

"I threw it out. I'm buying a new one to match the walls."

"But if you hadn't removed the wallpaper," I correctly concluded, "we wouldn't have needed a new shower curtain."

"It's called redecorating."

"Well, I'm against it," I said. "When are we going to eat supper?"

She sighed.

Reach Glynn Moore at (706) 823-3419 or glynn.moore@augustachronicle.com.


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