Tuesday, March 2, 2010

Screwed by the screw

There may or may not be quite a bit of angst on my part regarding the amount of projects littering our apartment and my mental To Do list. Our place is certainly livable right now, but there are boxes and random items everywhere. To complicate matters, much of our ability to nest was stymied by the moving company from hell taking it upon themselves to break furniture that was supposed to hold nicely unpacked items. And so, we've been stuck.

Progress: T passed a big certification exam for his new job yesterday, despite cramming for only two weeks while most folks take months to prepare. This is obviously fantastic news on the career front for him, but it's also fantastic news on the home front for me, because I've been struggling to put our place together largely by myself for the past two weeks while he studied. And so in lieu of the celebratory dinner for his big career gold star yesterday, I whisked him off to Ikea and made him buy us the makings of new bookcases and storage solutions for all our stuff. Such a reward for his big accomplishment, right? The aftermath:

Scene: This morning, T getting ready for work

T: "We can start knocking off projects as soon as I get home."
M: "Okay. I promise I won't try to finish the bathroom cabinet by myself today."
T: "Good."

See... now that I'm working from home, I'm finding it difficult to strike a good balance between the work I get paid to do and the projects screaming for my attention all around me, all day long. T knows I struggle with this, coming in after work and seeing 15 fewer boxes in the apartment and me not exactly behind my desk and on the clock. I think the balance will be easier for me to strike once things are a tad more manageable around here. I hope so, anyway. And so this morning, remembering my promise to avoid the bathroom cabinet, I looked instead to the deceptively simple flat Ikea box that held the cube shelf that will be home to my cookbooks.

My thought process: "So simple to construct... I can knock this right out then get straight to work... for my next break I can put all my cookbooks inside... maybe I'll find inspiration before I go the grocery store later... it'll be so great to get this out of the way... I'd be crazy not to do it..." Despite that condescending illustration in the instructions, of course:

But here I am an hour later, with arms all achy and body all scratched from try to wrestle the final pesky screw into place, and I still haven't gotten to the work I get paid to do. Or checked anything off my list. And sure, why not waste a little more time and write up this story? Wait, what, it is 11 a.m.?! And through all this, that screw is just mocking me.

Fine, Part #104323, FINE. I cannot conquer you alone. I should've waited for help. 



  1. So my theory is that is impossible to work or thrive unless you are happy with your surroundings. So obviously, you have to unpack, nest, etc in order to be any kind of productive on the stuff you're getting paid to do, um, right?

  2. Several weeks ago I spent FOUR HOURS putting together two IKEA frames and two IKEA storage bins. Why, why, why must all of their items be so difficult to assemble solo? What about all the nice single people out there who desire affordable modern Swedish furnishings!?!

  3. Hey at least you are working on the last screw. My less than illustrious Ikea building career has been marked by an overwhelming number of remaining screws and pegs... I mean, furniture doesn't totally need to be screwed together, right?

  4. Oh, I face the same dilemma during my telecommuting work days. I'll take a 15 minute break to unpack a box ... which turns into an hour break to organize a cupboard.

  5. I'm the same way with needing to have my surroundings together in order to get any real work accomplished. And I really hope that screw just needs an extra pair of hands--nothing worse than having to go back to ikea for ONE SCREW!

  6. Totally off subject - but can you go try this and tell us if it's as good as Wonkette says?


  7. I assemble no furniture. Dude, this is why you get MARRIED!

  8. Ever notice how ridiculously sexual the IKEA directions sound? We tried to put together a dresser once and it to an outsider it must have sound perverse. (Even notice your own blog post title!)

  9. I have that bookshelf and I thought, no problem a couple screws I got it, yah right! I needed assistance too but I love the bookshelf.


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