Blisters, Sweat, and Black Flies


   I decided the other day that since my divorce may be coming through relatively soon that I may want to take a little advantage of “our” charge accounts. I wouldn’t normally be so grasping but the other day my STBE (Soon-To-Be-Ex) was bitching and complaining about how shitty his finances were, how his bills were piling up and the money “just isn’t coming in fast enough”.

 Then two days ago I was outside when this big pick-up pulled in the driveway. A very nice-looking young man came walking up the sidewalk and said ” hello, M’am. (gack!) My name is Chet and I was wondering, is that your farm across the street, ’cause I notice that the wood fence over there really needs painting?”  I told him that yes, it was sorta mine but that it really was under the domain of my STBE. He said that he comes through every year and does work for a farmer we know who is well respected in the area. (I was thinking that I would check that reference, if need be.)   He wanted to paint the fence and asked who he needed to speak with about it and I told him my STBE’s name and told him to go across the street to see him at our business there. He said he’d been there and that the door was locked, I realized that it was 12:15 and the STBE never misses a meal so I told the young man to go back after one o’clock.

This sweet-talking guy then offers to give me an estimate on my old barn roof and I told him to knock himself out as long as the estimate was free and he said yes, it was. He went down to look the old barn over and while he was gone I checked out his truck. The liscence plate said he was from Virginia! That explained the lovely southern drawl!

He came back and gave me a story about how it would normally cost me about $1600 to do a roof that rusty but he would do it for only $1200.  I laughed and told him that was about $1150 more than I had at the moment. He scratched his head, got quiet for a couple of minutes, and said something about how he had several can of that roofing paint on his truck and how he really wanted to get it out of there so he could pick up more barn paint in the morning and “hey, I tell ya what… ” he said, ” what would you give me to do it? I take checks and credit cards!”

 I swear the hair on the back of my neck stood straight up. This was a classic con game! I said ” I don’t make decisions about money that quickly so just leave me your card and maybe I’ll let you know.” He said “well, M’am, when might I be hearing from you?” and I said ” when I win the lottery!”

 Late that evening as I was having dinner with my daughter from across the street I recounted this story to her and she said ” That guy must be the one I saw over there painting today!” He must have  conned the STBE into hiring him! The daughter called her father and said ” hey, Dad, how much is that guy charging you to paint the fence?”  “$1200 !  You probably could have hired him for half that!”

 The next morning I went over and saw two older black men doing the painting from a truck with the painter’s name on it . The young man was probably off conning some other poor sucker into paying him top dollar for watered down paint. But I realized that my STBE was not worried about money as much as he professed! The fence is not the biggest priority around here!

So yesterday I went to our local hardware store and charged three gallons of deck stain and a couple of brushes. I plan to go back tomorrow and buy a socket wrench set and some garden hoses! Charge it!

 That was yesterday. I then scrubbed the deck with Clorox and Simple Green and a brush. It took 5 hours to get it clean enough. I let it dry overnight and today I spent 6 hours staining the damned thing! The flies were driving me insane and I couldn’t swat at them because I was sticky with cedar stain all over my hands!  It’s pretty big, 20’X20′ and then there are steps down to another landing and then more steps and rails and posts and uprights and risers and oh hell! I am so achy tonight! I finally got done!! It looks great!

 I went out a little while ago to admire my handiwork. The birds have already shit on it.

Boy, I showed him!

11 comments on “Blisters, Sweat, and Black Flies

  1. aaahahahahaa! Had to laugh at the bird shit.
    You’re an amazing woman, Trisha.

    Red- not amazing, just tenacious and pigheaded!! But thanks, I like amazing better! 😀

  2. Just like Wilma and Betty from the Flintstones, “CHARGE IT!” You are the shit Trisha! Buy yourself something nice while you’re at it…

    JQ- I think I’m more of a Wilma than a Betty. Which one are you? 😛

  3. Why hadn’t you thought of this before? 😉

    $1200 to paint that fence? Is that the same fence he paid me like $5 an hour to paint when I was a teenager???

    Good job on the deck staining! That is a big job, and I bet it looks great, bird poop or not.

    birdpress- I don’t know why I didn’t think of this before. I guess ’cause I’m not particularly grasping or greedy ENOUGH! 😀

    Yes, the very same fence he conned you into painting!! Cheap bastard. (oops, did I say that?)

  4. I’m going with Red here, you are amazing. My back hurts just rolling over in bed or brushing my teeth. Meanwhile you’re out hookin’ your deck up. Simply amazing. As for the STBE, you need to direct the flies and birds over his way too. Not just the con men. 😉

    Spidey- you get that back better, now ya hear! Good idea on sending the flies and bird-shitting critters over to the STBE!! I need Dr. Doolittle!!! No wait. I had a Dr. Do-Little! That’s one of the reasons he’s my STBE!! 😀

  5. When I read about what you have to go through with your STBE I feel guilty for having such a great wasband. Well, I say take him for all you can get.

    I love the Dr. Do-Little comment.

    Sorry the birds already shit on your handiwork but you should be proud of yourself for taking on such a big job.

    Joanie- kiss that wasband (if that’s allowed) and tell him I said “hey”! I’m glad you have him as a friend still.
    Thanks, love! If you see me tieing knots in birds’ asses you’ll know why! LOL

  6. I love it! You are so awesome and should be teaching young girls how-to tips for taking care of shit.

    When I left the ex I went to GoodYear and had four new tires put on my car and charged them to our bank account and I left town. He said I made him bounce three checks. I figured it was a small inconvenience to him compared to the years of hell he put me through.

    So, did you get some pictures of the deck pre-bird poop?

    betme- no pictures, unfortunately. Glad you got the ex to pay for your new tires. I bet it felt good, right? So what if he bounced a couple checks to get there Love you, girl!

  7. i like to hear of women tackling household tasks on their own. My mom worked on her own cars.

    i’m glad you didn’t get ripped off. (Although i’m sorry your ex did.)

    Birdpress- p’raps this is poetic justice?

    c- I wish I knew more about cars. In the OLD DAYS I might have stood a chance but now with computerized engines I’m lucky I can find the dipstick to check my own oil!

  8. Well, at least you put your stubborn pride into some manual labor that ended up giving you a nicer deck. 😉 We have guys that drive around where I live that ask about paving driveways and stuff like that. I have never taken them up on anything because it weirds me out. They always seem to have just finished a bigger job and always think they have the perfect amount to do MY driveway all ready to go. Now I never will take them up on it. It just makes sense that if I want some real work done, I’ll look into it myself.

    teeni- yeah, these guys pop up here too from time to time and I always wonder how many poor people get conned and then have no recourse when they never finish the job or do a bad job. I agree. Better to do it oourselves!

  9. I’m with you, girl.

    I can almost always F-it back together about as well as I can pay to have it F-ed back together — because I just don’t want to take the time, or have the resources, or trust mind you, to find people I can give top dollar to and expect a top dollar job. In fact, when I’m in a rush, I wind up spending top dollar, and have to go back and redo it myself!

    That’s the fun part about living in the country in Texas. Anybody who doesn’t identify themselves after knocking on my door. “who is it?” *knock knock* “who is it?” *knock knock* “OK, let me get my gun.”

    “It’s your post man!”

    Oh, OK.


    Gadfly- I am laughing my ass off reading your comment! I think I’ll confiscate that term “F-it back together”! And I love the knock knock!! You so crack me the hell up!!!!!!

  10. HA HA HA!

    Friday as I was dragging the garbage cans back down the hill, two fellas in one of these refrigerated trucks pulled up real quick. One hopped out, limping a little, and with a pained expression went on about how he got stuck doing his friend a favor that went south and now he has all this beef and chicken, and “Sir, do you eat beef or chicken at all? I can sell it to you for $2-$3 per/lb.”

    I said no, although later I wondered if perhaps I could have worked it so that I got the better end of the deal, but I doubt it.

    You probably did the best thing. These guys probably bank on people thinking we’re smarter than we are…

    dobeman- I’ve seen those guys, too! They’ve pulled pretty much the same line on me! I am grateful I didn’t fall for it even though it WAS tempting! I am such a glutton for a food bargain!

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