My “Relaxing” Weekend Off!

file0001456444395I kept fairly calm at work this weekend, which may have been a direct result of not actually having been there either Friday or Saturday evening. There was only one really annoying guy on Sunday night, but I refrained from sticking my foot up his ass (it was difficult, but I managed). Don’t worry though, I found some other things to whine about this fine Monday morning.

I should have felt like the Queen of England, having two unplanned weekend nights off in a row! (We were severely overstaffed and I took full advantage!) I did not, however, engage in any Queen of England-type activities — unless you think Lizzie pops over to the local Ikea, drags (very heavy!) boxes into the car and up the stairs, and then proceeds to spend her Saturday evening hobnobbing with her cat whilst putting together rather large shelving units and waxing freshly painted tables.

I purchased one of those 16-cube Ikea storage units. (Sadly, the 24-unit job won’t fit!) As I laid it out and began to assemble it, the cube-like nature of the beast attracted the other beast that lives in my house — the cat. The second anyone in this house (usually that would be me) commences any sort of project that requires tools and concentration, The Great Fananini emerges from under my daughter’s bed. It’s not in his nature to be unobtrusive, either. He doesn’t just sit there and observe or supervise (generally that’s Fang’s job). The Great Fanganini enjoys getting involved in projects! As I was attempting to put this thing together, to maintain it’s squareness, to insure that the pieces were correctly and securely united, the cat seized the opportunity to jump from one cube to another — like he was having his own personal game of hopscotch.

No amount of “shooing” nor my half-hearted and feeble attempts at engaging him in his other favorite activity — the fetching of hair elastics — could dissuade him from hunkering down in one cube and springing into the next one — not even the use of the rubber mallet. Cats, and The Great Fanganini is no exception, are not big fans of loud noises. Normally, once any sort of banging begins, which includes the opening and closing of a cabinet door, he makes a beeline for the safety and security of his lair. Not this time, though. No. Apparently, so intrigued was he by the cubes that he was able to ignore the noise that the rubber mallet was making as it drove the shelves together.

It would have been fine, really, if he just played his little game in the cubes that had already been assembled. This would have allowed me to at least go about my business. But, no. Instead and because he’s old and tires easily (I can sympathize!) he continually got “stuck” in the cubes. He’s also ginormous. (He outweighs both of my friends little yippy dogs combined!) As a result, I had to keep stopping in order to extricate him from the cube — and then listen to him whine when he couldn’t get back into the next cube. Being the idiot that I am, rather than ignore his pathetic mewling, I “helped” him play his game. This required me to stop what I was doing and “place” him into the next cube. This added an element of difficulty to what was already an annoying enterprise.

Needless to say, construction of the shelf unit took far longer, from start to finish, than it should have. Far longer. By the time I had completed the task, removed the cat, and lifted the foolish thing to an upright position, my daughter was heading off to work. “Wait!”, I cried. “I need you to help me push this stupid thing up against the wall before you go!” From my tone, the ever helpful Fangette knew better than to deny me. She and I pushed it up against the wall — the wall where Fang, prior to skipping out for a weekend down the shore with “the boys”, insists it go.

Of course it doesn’t fit on that wall. Why? Because I have a GIANT treadmill that resides (and operates as a handy “catch-all” for coats, scarves, the odd glove, and other cast-off foul weather gear) on that wall. A treadmill that, if it weren’t for it’s capacity to hold unneeded outerwear, would, I’m certain, be covered in the amount of dust that one would normally associate with the sealed burial sites of long-dead Egyptian Pharoahs.

The presence of the treadmill as a focal point in my living room has been a bone of contention for Fang and I for quite some time. Before the hovel purge and the redecorating began, it was simply an eyesore, but now that things are starting to come together here, it just has to go. (Black plastic and chrome do not lend themselves to my “shabby chic” design scheme!) It needs to find a new home — preferably one not in this zip code. I told Fang that if he didn’t allocate space in his closet (maybe near the golf clubs that he never uses?) for the foolish thing, that the new location might just be his side of the bed — and I don’t just mean adjacent to the bed, in front of his table — I mean ON the actual bed where HE actually sleeps. If I could lift the damn thing and if I could bear to see it resting upon my beautiful toile quilt, I would have done it already. Maybe if I cover it in cubes, I might be able to enlist the cat’s help.

The ever optimistic Fang holds out some small kernel of hope that he will use the treadmill again. He won’t. It’s old and it’s worn out. Even my workout crazed daughter won’t go near it. Fangette claims it barely moves; Fang contends that it just needs a little oil. (I refuse to even comment on whether it might be the dust or a stray mitten that may, in fact, be clogging up the works!) Regardless of its condition, I am finished with it. Even if it were brand spanking new — pristine, even — I would want it gone. Because we do NOT have room for it. (We never did!)

Tomorrow is Fang’s birthday. Guess what I’m getting him? A gym membership! I understand that this is where people who do not have room for home exercise equipment go to stay in shape. (In Fang’s case, that would be pear-shaped.) I hear they have modern, working treadmills at those places. I understand that folks actually use them for, you know, treading — not as we use ours, you know, for storage and dust collecting.

Between the cat, the treadmill, and some of the problems I encountered with “dark wax” — problems that I do not have the wherewithal to get into right now, but let’s just say it has not lent the desired effect to the tables that I have worked long and hard on — I realized something this weekend. It occurred to me that even though I didn’t work and regardless of the fact that my husband and daughter were not even here, I still found a way to become annoyed, to maintain an increased stress level and to engage in manual labor. I have reached the stunning conclusion that, perhaps, it’s not the rest of the world that drives me crazy — perhaps I’m simply wired this way.

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9 thoughts on “My “Relaxing” Weekend Off!

  1. […] Is Much Nicer Than His Wife. What Fang Doesn’t Know: I Was a Pre-School Tracing Prodigy! My “Relaxing” Weekend Off!Miss Marge’s One-Armed Vanity Chair […]


  2. I think treadmills and stationary bikes were merely created to be the thorn in everyone’s side. My mom was just commenting this weekend that she is at war with my dad over the treadmill taking up residence in their basement. They’ve had it for 20 years and it hasn’t been used in 19 years. My dad believes he is going to use it again someday. My husband wanted to get a stationary bike last year. I told him first of all we have no where to put it and secondly I know he wouldn’t use it. I told him if he brought an exercise bike into the house it may be grounds for divorce!


    • javaj240 says:

      Stick to your guns! My husband must have hypnotized me when I agreed to the treadmill nonsense. At least your mother only has to look at it in the basement!


  3. peachyteachy says:

    I don’t actually understand how you and your cat managed this feat of construction, because all I want is Ikea access. But, well done!


  4. Vanessa says:

    “It needs to find a new home — preferably one not in this zip code.”

    Good grief you are hilarious. Seriously.

    Treadmills are seriously the worst, in all respects. Also I love your cat. He sounds very similar to Nymeria, but her specialty is more bed making. Can’t change the sheets without her help. Ever.


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