Half-Arsed Murderer

No matter where I turn in my house I see something half-arsed that I did or built or bought. Examples include: the shower grouting, the hair straightener hook, the cupboard door under the kitchen sink, the cardboard curtain on the window above the stairs, the rug, the rangehood lighting, the front door shelving.

I spend a lot of time at work getting the colours correct and the alignments perfectly straight in my architecture diagrams. I proofread all my Teams messages. I update design documents after go live to include any changes during development. Is this why I don't have the energy to full-arse home improvements? Or is physical work just a lot harder?

Last weekend I tried to get through a few things on the to-do list. I half-arsed a mount for the fan in the gym, and I half-arsed relocating the tomato from a pot to the corner of the garden. Now the tomato is dead. It's tied up like a crucifixion to a trellis, but I know it's dead because I didn't dig a deep enough hole or erect a sturdy enough trellis or keep enough roots attached when I lifted it from its pot. I loved that tomato. It provided nearly three years of amazing service and killing it was no way to thank it. Will this be enough to motivate me to stop half-arsing things around the house? I don't know, but my passionfruit vine can only hope.

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If you met yourself from the future, what would you ask your future self?
What if they wont tell you anything?


As I approach a decade of home ownership I'm sorry to say that I have not improved much when it comes to home improvements. I feel a lot of internal pressure to be better at being a handyman. I watched a lot of football and Big Box Hardware Warehouse advertisements at an impressionable age, before I possibly could have realised what the subconscious messages I might be digesting because of this association were.

These days I can make holes in bricks and fix tap washers with a 90% success rate. But I am not one for renovations. This explains why the shitty, constantly breaking three-panel sliding door on my dilapidated shower with its weak-pressured showerhead that sprays the back of my shoulders each day has been the norm since I moved into my current house in February 2020. There are many skills a handyman should have, and organising other skilled tradesmen to come and do larger jobs in exchange for payment is one I have struggled to develop the most.

If I didn't have to pay tax, I could probably get a whole new bathroom every year. But paying $1500 for a new shower screen and installation of a new showerhead has eluded me for many years. What if the actual fair price is $1400? What if they drill through the tile and hit a pipe and water sprays out once again below my head level? What if I have to talk to someone on the phone? Despite these obstacles, finally, I succeeded in procuring and having delivered a new shower screen and - after a few helpful holes were drilled by someone with the right drill-bit - I installed a new shower head too that I can actually stand under.

Is suffering for 1200+ days with a terrible shower experience the secret for bathing bliss? After I replaced the plumbing tape and had a drip free experience tonight, I think the answer is yes. The glass of the shower walls now reaches close to the ceiling. The door doesn't fall off when you get out. The Methven showerhead seems to magically increase the pressure of my plumbing, the cascading water feeling both firm and silky. It reminds me of Amalfi, standing in a much narrower shower screen getting drenched by an endless waterfall of warm water to wash off the day's hiking. All that was missing is a little, wooden-framed window through which you can see the mountains as well as the buildings across the street.

I think installing that as a feature is gong to be beyond me.

Future Brad, I Owe You a Beer

Future Brad, if you are reading this and you haven't had your future beer yet, go and get one now and drink it. I don't care if it's eight in the morning. Why are you reading random entries at 8am anyway? Are you retired? Sounds great! Definitely drink that beer!

I can't drink beer this weekend. I spent time around children last weekend, and for that I got sick. Despite being sick I spent a few hours on Saturday trying to disassemble the ergonomic chair I spent $800 on because it was designed for people 180-210cm. (Spoiler Alert: It was designed for people who are 180-190cm.)

This chair was advertised as a risk free online purchase because you could return within 21 days if it didn't fit. The return policy also stipulated that the chair must be fully repackaged in the box it came in for this to work. Everything was going smoothly until it came to extracting the gas-lift from the seat-base and the wheelbase. YouTube was helpful in giving me tutorials that made it look easy, followed by comments that someone needed a tractor to extract theirs. Well, highly motivated, it took me an hour, some WD40, a pot mitt and a lot of mallet work to get it free from the base. That was the first beer. Another hour getting it all back into the box so it closed again was the second beer, with a couple of peanuts or something for also compressing the gas-lift to fit in the box using a dumbbell and my shit wrists.

Vanessa got the gas-lift out of the wheel base for me so Vanessa if you're reading this, go have a Rose Cider.

If that wasn't enough, today we mowed the lawn and mulched all the leaves around the house. So that's another beer I owe me.

After the gardening I tried to finally end the weekend by having a hot shower and shaving my beard of sickness away, but on my way out of the shower the rolling door fell off and I had to fix that after drying myself as well.

So, future Brad go get a second beer.

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You Reap What You Sow

At least I better. Having the car broken into was enough to get me to buy the security cameras, these purple fruit finally ripening was the catalyst for me installing it.

Good While it Lasts

After this week's round of spring storms took down some of the shadecloth I knew that I would have to undertake some home maintenance this weekend just to maintain the status quo.

I'm not proud of my hack of eye bolts, fencing wire and a kitchen chair, but I was able to drink my reward beer faster than it could fall down again.

I am proud of the spatial and chronological search parameters I added to the event API of my current programming project.

How To Use Bosch Blue Hammer Drill To Make Holes In Bricks

One day I will install a copy of MediaWiki on my NAS to maintain a knowledge base of all the mundane things I have to learn or understand to maintain my car, house, body, finances and all the rest of life's details.

So I don't forget today's lessons, and because the drill's manual seems to assume you know exactly what you are doing, here's the way to drill holes in bricks without standing there for thirty minutes to make a tiny hole.

1. Be Safe
2. Charge the battery
3. Mark where the hole is going
4. Lock in a smaller masonry drill bit and make sure it's not crooked
5. Put it on Hammer mode
6. Set the numbers thingy to 20
7. Flick the switch on the top to 2
8. Make sure you're not in reverse mode
9. Drill a pilot hole with the small bit, then replace with the bigger masonry bit
10. Repeat 5-8
11. Drill the full hole
12. Sweep the dust out and put the anchors in
13. Change settings to screw mode.
14. Screw in the screws into the bracket/anchors
15. Wash hands/face/clothes
16. Drink beer

About Thyme

I made an omelette for dinner tonight using fresh thyme from my garden. It's the first time I ever cooked with that herb, and it was okay, nothing special. I'd eat it again.

Woolworths sell thyme for $300 a kilo, but the plant I grew I got from them for free last year because I spent $20. And all I had after that was plant it and water it and keep it out of the sun on hot days for the last ten months. I just saved myself $3! What fools Woolworths are. I'm definitely going back there next promotion to get more free seedlings for every $20 I spend.

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