A couple of weeks back I came upon a thought just floating around in the area behind my eye balls, and I thought and thought about it and one day I snapped and I did it. I did something everyone said that I couldn't do and that wouldn't work, but I did and it did. i honestly do not remember if I prayed first, I think I'll let you be the judge of that, since it is too late now!

I prefer you to read this while humming the alto part to "Chattanooga Shoe Shine Boy"; you don't know it, really? Well just, make it up then. The song was famous at one time, and I have sung it, danced in my own way to it and did a cartwheel at the end, I was on stage and I received a rousing applause from my friends in the seventh grade the rest of the under classmen and all the teachers at Sutherland Ele. School. Remember humming alto keeps you on your toes and alert as you "duh-duh-du-duh ♫" in harmony mode rather than the melody! So here we go, you hum, and I'll type! Company is good!

What ever could I have been doing, you ask, to bring about an ever-day miracle (?), what challenge did I accept and conquer, whose gauntlet was used in the throw down and how quick did I grab it up. All of my senior sisters (sweet) said, "go for it", all of the men said I was headed for calamity! Well, I took that as a dare!

On one freezing early May morning I headed to Home Depot with an old paint stir stick I had earlier used, and wanted the color on it matched. An elderly man passed by not quiet making eye contact, "I'll send you a paint tech," he tossed over his shoulder as he went on down the aisle to chase the sparrows. She did her best; the little "teeny bopper" who I am sure just left the cell phone counter at the mall. She drew herself up and I could see her whole head as she strained just above the workstation in the paint department, and there was retail wisdom glowing like fire from her sincere blue eyes, which blinked at least twice.

May I help you, she asks nicely. "Well you surely may." says I, and we were off. I knew the name of the old paint "cotton blossom" she valiantly stood on a stool and ran this through the computer.

But "No, no, they no longer make this color, but we will try to copy it." and that is what we did. Success! Bought one other thing, then jumped into my van, turned on the wipers (of course) and safely drove—only three miles over— the speed limit, and made my way home. I had my choir practice CD blaring in my ears, and with just a little head jerking and singing with my lips in an exaggerated way I amused the speed- demons who passed me. You know that dusty purple vans are targets and must be passed, "Look at that old lady rock!".

So now, for the project, for you do know I am a project person don't you. Ask any member of my family, "She's always in the middle of a muddle!" I love it. I had decided to paint my heavily laden, glossy, and deeply varnished "Knotty" western cedar paneling, from the 60's era. The men around me said you must sand the whole thing, and you'll kill yourself doing it! You notice I received no offer of help from the permanent man around here or the passer through either! Their hangdog looks spoke volumes, they were seeing me dig my own grave and I'm thinking they were liking it a little!

Never mind, my brilliant little helper at H.D. had sold me a new (to me and maybe you) type of primer, it is for high shine, glossy surfaces, and she said it would stick to a mirror! So  I dusted the walls (ugh),  it had been awhile between dustings,  but I had many legitimate reason for that being so, and I'll remember them one day soon now and tell you. The walls became much glossier than I remembered. Ok, we'll see.

I was told ( by a recliner resting male) that I would have to fill every knothole and paint maybe five or six times over their darkness. Want to bet I would ever do that? Another challenge! The primer rolled over the wooden walls like a spoonful of salt free butter melting into every pore of a slice of oven toasted Pumpernickel. Knot holes were disappearing right before my eyes and the dark spots on the wood faded like the memory of last years St. Patrick's Day gift, what was that gift?

I was skimming right along;it was looking  like that in three of four days with the trim and all I could wind up this creative exercise and go on to the next thing! I did not stop, I did not eat a meal, I kept a glass of water nearby, it was just like rocket fuel and I kept on going, this first wall about 22 feet long and nine feet high. The job called for a six foot ladder,  I have a wobbly one, and it worked and I found that yes, I could go as high as the third rung, as long as I held on to a dry spot on the wall. I painted primer and I painted primer, I took a few bathroom breaks, and with only a quick rinse of the hands, I was once again driving the ladder down the length of the room.

It began to get late and I finished the wall, one beautiful coat of streaky primer to dull these walls and make them grip the paint soon to come.  With the burning assurance of victory and the feeling of, "I win!" I stacked away my mess, ready to fight another day, tomorrow, if I can get out of bed. Off for a nice hot shower. I stood in the shower praying for flexibility to return to my knees; as soon as I had stepped off of that ladder after all those hours, they froze up. My back seized  up in a strange angle also, do you remember Tim Conway, it was sort of the way he would shuffle along with his bent back. "Oh well, it is worth it all", I breathed as I leaned against the tub surround and let the hot water pour down.

I began to notice what was going down the drain, suds, bubbles, a residue of mulit colored reddish hair dye, a freckle or two, just kidding, though I really was scrubbing now, everything going down in the miniature whirlpool but the primer, that was on my hands, arms, various places on my legs, my left ear and nostril, streaks in my hair, up the back of both arms, and on my right hip(?),g-r-e-a-t! Did I tell you the primer is called "Gripper" It had me in it's grip alright and I was going nowhere, literally, nowhere in public. I had had the primer tinted light yellow, and that is one of the worse colors for redheads!

I leapt from the shower entwined in a towel and headed for the mineral spirits to no avail, it acted just like water, I used a cleaner called Awesome, it wasn't. Back to the  cleaners I found Oxygen Orange, it was hopeless. I grabbed the primer can I could barely make out the words for all the spills down the side, "for clean up warm soapy water…"! You have got to be kidding me, Uh oh "immediately".

My heart sank, I could throw away the old jeans and shirt, but what to do, what to do?
I went to bed hoping I would not have an emergency in the night, wanted no one professional or not, looking at me. My hands were the worse; they felt as though I had at least three pair of thin leather gloves on. Maybe I would dream my answer. And you know? I did. Don went to the $ Store early in the morning and got a six pack of "Scotch Brite" pads although it was $ Store's brand, I didn’t care, I tore them open and hopped back in the shower to work on my new project! I now hate yellow paint! When I got down to the part where I resembled a recently skinned rabbit I stopped, this would have to do.

With the use of Band-aids and  tons of lotion I worked my way into my clothes and got ready to go to Kroger's Senior day, we shop this day no matter what. Other than for the little blood leaking on an elbow, due to the fact band-aids don't stick well there, I made it back home with enough groceries to feed a growing family. Speaking of that have you watched TLC lately, with the worlds oldest Mothers, that will give you nightmares worse than yellow paint, oh my face hurts when I laugh.

Groceries put up, ladder and paint out, I'm ready to tackle the other long wall, but today I am also pushing along with me a pan of hot soapy water. I still think this primer is a gift from God, but like all of His gifts, you have to use them correctly to do any good. The in-house guy passed by, he was making comments, such as, "There are things worse than sanding," yeah, there is, giving up! Believe me I will win this yet, bend the left knee, put foot on the first rung…… a bible verse ringing in my ears "a sacrifice is worthless unless it cost you something".

Two months later and my paint clings tightly to the under coat of that magical primer and "zippity- doo- dah"! "I am finished, let's see now that new idea……was………oh wait," dropping to my knees, "this time I must seek guidance first!"

B's a Buzzin'


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