It's 200 dollars to have someone build the shed. That's really not a lot when you consider I've been working on it for about 40 hours. I've spent an entire week of work banging on boards and looking at a mound of parts acting like I'm thinking instead of panicking.
I like building the shed. It's one of the best things I've done in a while. And, yes, by "best" I mean completely inefficient and exhausting. It seemed like too much of a hassle to get a compressor and a nail gun, so we've had to hammer well over 700 nails. My right hand is tingly and numb. If I look away my thumb may not even be there. I had no idea it would take so many nails.
It's satisfying though. I worked all through the weekend, getting so tired that without even realizing it I fell asleep on the lawn. Sunday night Sarah and I were going to watch a movie and spend some time together. I woke up several hours later with no idea where I was; the wife having given up on my rigor mortis and gone on to bed. If I had to do this for a living I'd die.
BUT I'm so close to being done. So close. The trusses are up (don't do that by yourself, btw) and the roof parts have been assembled. Now I need it to stop raining. Or Seattl-ing. Whatever it is when every day there's some kind of precipitation banging down onto my backyard dreams.
And it's not been the typical Rocky Mountain thunder that rolls through and quickly moves on to shower another neighborhood. These things are terrifying Poseidon piss storms that go on for hours. I have tarps--I've never had tarps--but I have tarps and you'll see me in a panic in the rain pulling them over some of my already warped wood. Two nights ago I stared out the window at a lightning deathstorm that engulfed our back yard. Finally, I sprinted into the strobes and wrestled my plastic saviors into place. It took me fifteen minutes but the rain didn't let up. A bolt of lightning would rip open the sky and Sarah would shout from the porch--kind of a quick and safe way to check my vitals. Finally, I secured the tarps and took whatever I could inside, only to have the rain stop.
I'm so close. Last night I ditched a potentially career-elevating dinner to finish my roof. And it rained. So under my temporary tarped ceiling, I did what little chores I could. Which was good, because I can't feel my right hand and I've been falling asleep random places.
I still think back to when I bought the materials for the shed, and the woman telling me that it's only $200 bucks for their top men to come out and assemble it. I run that through my head as I pry bent nails out of wet wood. Shouldn't I be doing something else with my time? Time is the most valuable of all resources. I mean those assembly guys would be done by now. Wearing a robe and smoking a pipe I'd hand them their cash and begin the good life of shed ownership.
No, I'd rather do this myself, I determined after some thought. It's rebuilding the memories of the construction jobs of my youth. My dad builds houses for eff's sake. How do I not know how to build a shed? I guess it never stuck, or I wiped my brain with some hard living in my twenties. Alternately, it could have been that once I left my duties as gopher for my father I thought I'd never want to revisit the construction industry again. Now, however, I love it. It's my backyard version of one of those primal camps where men get in touch with their primal scream. I've seen it online, these dudes with painted faces running around the Adirondacks. They pay to be in kind of a man camp where they can throw off their suburban burden (suburdens?) and streak through the woods. I've got my shed, my wife shouting at me in lightning storms, and three children crawling over piles of wood and nails. That seems throwback enough. And most likely has saved me thousands on a trip to a man camp in the Adirondacks.