8.04.2005

Some Assembly Required

Homeownership as a single female has its joys. If I want to go out and purchase a leopard print, mohair throw for my bedroom, I don't worry about having to take anyone else's tastes (or lack thereof) into consideration. With complete privacy and discretion, I can have guests over at anytime I would like and at whatever hour I would like them. I can also walk around my house wearing just any old outfit or even nothing at all depending on my mood. It's great!

But, homeownership as a single female also has its drawbacks, most notably in the area of common household tasks and repairs. I have a honey-do list, but no honey!

For instance after only five days of living in my new place, I've already had to call GE to come out and look at my dryer and refrigerator. The dryer squeals like a pig facing the slaughterhouse; and I can't get my refrigerator icemaker to work. I press the button; nothing happens. In each of these cases, I don't have a clue as to what the problem might be. Fortunately for me, there is 1-800 GE-CARES. In these critical times, it is comforting to know that someone does.

I've also decided that I detest the light fixture in my master bathroom. I want it replaced, but I don't know the first thing about electric wiring or even where the circuit breaker is yet. Actually, there are a lot of things that I want replaced or added to my new home. Just this week I've purchased two ceiling fans, three new light fixtures, three towel rings, three doorstops, a medicine cabinet, and a shelving unit. I know how to work a credit card. There is abundant proof of this fact. But aside from a hammer and a screwdriver, I don't think I've ever held or even know the names of most common household tools.

For most single, mechanically-challenged, women these are the dreaded words -- "Some Assembly Required". I shudder whenever I look at a box and see this slogan discretely placed in a nondescript corner. My first thought is, "Why doesn't the manufacturer just put a huge warning label on those boxes that reads something like, 'Requires Hours of Tedious Labor,' or 'Don't Try This At Home or You'll Break a Nail.'"

My second thought is always, "Why ISN'T it assembled already?" I mean really, Chinese child labor aside, when I purchase a shelving unit, I don't want to have to screw it together. I expect to be able to take the shelf out of the box, place it in a room, and place my books on it. That's assembly enough!

In the end, I think the notion of "some assembly required" boils down to manufacturer laziness and a means to cut costs at the expense of single women everywhere. Wow! Do I suddenly feel discriminated against!

There are always men (that hope to date me someday) who offer to come and tackle my honey-do lists. But they are not my honeys and I fear the offers come with strings attached. The only strings I am interested in these days have pearls attached to them and are on sale at my local jewelry store. Besides, I wouldn't want to take advantage of anyone's good wishes or fellow feelings toward me. I'm not that kind of girl.

So, what is a girl to do? First, I borrow my friends' handy spouses or significant others to get priority jobs done in a timely fashion. Dear, sweet Scott installed a light fixture and a ceiling fan this past Monday. All I had to do was provide tacos and beer. His bride-to-be, and my former roommate Shannon, assembled my new kitchen table and saved me the $45 assembly charge. As Shannon pieced together the heavy wooden legs, I occupied my time oooohing and aaahing over my new coffee pot. In all my excitement, I can't remember if I offered her any. Now that is a friend!

I try to spread my honey-do list around to as many friends as possible, so as not to overburden. My friend Carlos offered to come this weekend and help me out around the house. We're close enough friends that I know the offer is sincere. As a last resort, I can also call on my family for help. Dad is a jack-of-all trades in the home repair area. He doesn't know it yet, but he'll be tiling my backsplash and fixing my vacuum cleaner.

When I've finally run at of willing and available friends, there is only one thing left to do. Hire! Hire! Hire! My honey-do list is growing, but the list of honey candidates has dwindled down to nothing at the moment. Money might not buy love. But if it gets my foyer painted Monday, I'll have a loving feeling knowing that there's one more item off my list.

11 comments:

Xavierism said...

I have many straight male friends that I could send over to your place for the manly things that need to be done. We can just sit, drink coffee, while they work around the house.

Martinis tomorrow evening....by the pool...8pm....See ya here!

*CHEERS*

Laura said...

I'm right there with you babe, once again where this new Harem idea is coming in handy. *giggle*

Mister Hand said...

When you run out of willing and able friends--me, me, me!

Meatbag said...

Unlike the other horndogs out there (especially the one who posted just above me) I actually would come out and fix your stuff with no strings attached, but that's really just because I'm a spineless individual who tends to let people walk all over me. I probably would steal a glance at your ass though, after all, chivalry demands that a man follow a lady up the staircase. Of course, you probably don't live anywhere near me, and I'm not buying a plane ticket to come fix your toaster, no matter how great your ass is.

Diane Mandy said...

Xav - What a lovely idea! We can sit and drink expresso martinis while men clad in tool belts cater to my every home repair need!

Laura - The harem idea certainly has all sorts of fringe benefits. What sort of questions should I ask on a membership application to me Harem?

Hand - Are you really a horndog as Meatball says?

Meatball - spineless and let people walk all over you? Get with (laura) above. We might need you to fell out an appication!

KOM said...

Fireman KOM with kung fu action grip is genuinely concerned that you don't know where your breaker box is. He hopes you're kidding.

Mister Hand said...

Look at the picture and you tell me if I'm a horndog.

But I know a thing or two about handyman-type work. And I am secure enough to accept rejection without running my fist through a wall. I might smash a few things, but nothing overly valuable. I mean, I'll know better than to turn over the Tiffany lamps and whatnot.

queenofsass said...

Super girlfriend to the rescue...I can do some things to help you out, but the rewiring is best left to people who know what the hell they are doing.

Of course, I will join you & my Xav for the martini toast to well built manhood in tool belts.

Diane Mandy said...

KOM- Ok, I was being just a little over the top when I said I didn't know where the breaker box was... but everything else is completely true. I'm mechanically-challenged.

MH- Fortunately I don't have any tiffany lamps. :-)

SassyAssy - Sounds great! Bring the hubby's toolbox with you, but not the hubby. It's a girls week!

queenofsass said...

Does Mister Hand realize he needs to go through a screening process to even apply to be your home fixer-upper?

David said...

I like to do Honey Do stuff, but I like to do it when I want to which usually causes problems. I mean I understand the light being out in my wifes closet is an inconvienence for her, but really how high is that on MY list of stuff to do?