I am the world’s worst carpenter. There is no one crappier at woodworking than me. Even though I grew up watching the legendary, almost mythical workings of Bill Shelton, I simply suck eggs at fixing things with wood in them. This last Sunday morning was just more unnecessary evidence to remind me of how bad I actually am at performing projects around the house.
My day was planned perfectly. Sunday morning would involve waking up, going to church, meal prepping, running a mile, doing the LHRL Weekly Challenge, participate in a running clinic, hanging a door to Grayson’s room, and sitting on my ass for the rest of the day. Everything would be finished by about 2:30, with the exception of hanging Grayson’s bedroom door. I kept expressing my dread of the door-hanging to Amanda, who repeatedly assured me that it would be a piece of cake. I had already purchased the door, complete with pre-drilled door knob holes. Amanda saw this as 5 minute project,I saw it as a life problem which would carry on to the next generation of Horrell’s…the truth lay somewhere in the middle.
Like every other “simple project” I begin, I was aware that it would be ANYTHING but simple. I have tinkered on enough things in my life to know that there are no simple-fixes. If there is “some assembly required”, it’s gonna be a bitch, and most likely requires an engineering background. If it has a picture of a lady doing the assembly on the box…you better call NASA, or at least plan on taking a week off of work. I once saw two tents in Wal-Mart, prior to an overnight camping trip with my son. One tent said, “Sleeps eight people, and sets up in 10 minutes” for $100, the other tents said, “sleeps 10 people, and sets up in 7 minute minutes” for $150. I went with the $150, because I view assembly minutes in terms of hours.
This door would be no different than any of the countless other “fixer-upper” projects, which I have attempted before. There was NOTHING that went correctly. My drill broke, the previous door had been altered (meaning I had to alter the new door), the frame was jacked up, and the lock cavity was completely stripped. It was pretty much every disaster that I have come to expect from any project which I am a participant. This is why I was able to laugh it off. I told Amanda at one point, “Grayson is about one bad cut away from having a shower curtain installed as a bedroom door.” Things were just not going my way, but they were going in just about the way that I would expect. All the better, I was home with my beautiful wife enjoying some laughs as I trounced up and down the stairs, at least two dozen times, each with a different perplexed look on my face, some form of a curse word, or sometimes a wave of optimism. Either way, she appreciated my efforts, which was the only real important thing to me.
I am well aware of the fact that there are qualified individuals who could help me with my door project, but that is not what I was looking for. I was simply looking to hang a door, or provide some sort of structure to provide Grayson a place to hang his basketball goal, which his grand parents sent him for his birthday. I was doing a half-ass job, but I was doing it whole-heartedly. I would not stop until Grayson had a place to rest his basketball goal. The functioning of the door was secondary to the need of a place to mount his basketball hoop. I was aware of my abilities, my shortcoming, my expectations, and the result which would most likely be produced.
I’m not really sure that anyone wants to go into a project or situation knowing that they are going to do a half-assed job, but I do find some freedom in knowing on the front end that I only have the knowledge and qualifications to achieve these kinds of results. It saves a lot of self-ridicule and pouting. Anytime I attempt something, new or otherwise, it is important that I take inventory of exactly what I should expect my results to be, and exactly what facts I used to conjure up my expectations. I need and want to avoid being frustrated whenever possible.
There are countless examples of times when I have pitched a hissy fit because I did not get the results that I wanted, very few of these were based on realistic expectations. The majority of the time that I receive half-assed results is because I put in a half-ass effort. I don’t necessarily believe that a half-ass effort is such a bad thing, depending on the application, but I think that the frustration, self-defeatism, sadness, and overall bad attitude that comes with half-assed results is where I need to be careful. I want to make it a point to enjoy as many things as possible. With each thing that I try, there will be results, in some form or fashion. I want to be conscious of using the results as a measuring stick towards the improvements I want to make in the future….not as a beating stick, used to flail my self-esteem. If I want big-ass results, I need to put in whole-ass efforts, otherwise the pouting and sulking is just an inconvenience for the people around me.
Peace, Love, and all things Beef related,