It’s Christmas day. Everyone is opening presents. My sister suddenly hands a scroll to my Mother. It reads:
“Official Proclamation and Document of Note. This is to declare that Steve and Melissa will provide and install two overhead light fixtures in the Royal office and Royal sewing room for her Royal Highness, know by her loyal subjects as ‘Squid Lips Sr.” (our Mom).
Melissa looks over and sees my face. I look like I’ve just had a car door slammed on my testicles. Then I suddenly remember a casual conversation a few weeks earlier. “Hey Banana Boy” wouldn’t it be nice if you and I Installed a couple of lights, as our gift to Mom for Christmas?” “Sure” I said. And never thought of it again…
Now, suddenly, I am transported to the horror of what I agreed to. And I go from highly skilled Journeyman carpenter of renown, with 29 years of experience, to “Attic Boy”.
“Stevie this is a piece of cake”, my sister says. “With your tools and my management skills, this will be easy.” If looks could kill she would be lying dead at that moment.
So here I am, lifting myself into a dusty, slimy attic. I dig around through the fog of 20 year old blown-in insulation to find the nails I have stuck in from below to locate where the lights will go. Melissa bangs on the ceiling to help me find them. Seven hours and two lungs full of dust later, I emerge from the fully wired attic, a free man. And other than the fact that two of the fixtures are too dim to light the rooms, one won’t shut off, and the chandelier in my Mom’s bedroom is only five feet off the floor, everything looks fine. “When were you thinking of moving my light up Steve?” my Mom asks. "Well Mom, your birthday is coming. Let’s not push the issue…”