Tuesday, February 02, 2010

Let There Be Light

While Simon was reading an 800 page Gothic Romance, the Brooklyn half of the hedgehogs was also making good use of literature.

My lightbulb blew on Sunday night and instead of knitting by scented candle, I decided to do what any self sufficient girl in 2010 would do-- weep and faint. No, just kidding-- I decided to change the bulb. Sadly, every chair and piece of furniture stable enough to stand on left me six inches shy of the fixture. And then, a stroke of genius-- I would call Jonathan Strange, Mr. Norrell and Harry Potter (circa Goblet of Fire) to the rescue! Stacked on top of the bed, I was just tall enough to ever so delicately unscrew the dead bulb. And after shattering several 75 watt candidates I perfected the process, successfully installing my new light source.

Sure beats weeping and fainting. Simon-- let strongly recommend you move Udolpho to the home maintenance and repair section of your bookshelf... perhaps it can assist you with the sloping kitchen floor of doom (<--- also a good title for a book).


Simon said...

Well, you'd make a terrible heroine of a Gothic romance, but you are very resourceful, which I think is the better end of the deal.

I think I may indeed move Udolpho to home maintenance and repair. I think I'll move The Corrections there, too. It's actually fatter than Udolpho, and much worse.

Pandora said...

I am currently reading David Sedaris' "When You are Engulfed in Flames" which is not suitable for assistance with home repairs, but contains specific advice concerning light bulb maintenance which I feel the need to share with you. (It made me rethink a few of my own teetering towers atop rolling desk chairs that tip back...but we shall not concern ourselves with those questionable actions at present.)

Here is Sedaris' advice after a brief time visiting a medical examiner's office (perhaps you see where this is going): "We had such a case on Halloween, an eighty-year old man who had tumbled from a ladder while replacing a lightbulb. Four and a half days on the floor of his un-air-conditioned home, and as the bag was unzipped the room filled with what the attending pathologist termed "the smell of job security." The autopsy took place in the morning and was the best argument for the buddy system I have ever seen. "Never live alone," I told myself. "Before you change a lightbulb, call someone from the other room and have him watch until you are finished."

So, Ivan, I'm not saying don't use Jonathan Strange, Mr. Norrell, Harry Potter, etc. to change your light bulbs. Just call us all in from the other room to watch while you do it.

Ivan said...

great, now we have to worry about changing light bulbs AND getting trapped under a bookcase.

In retrospect, standing on the books would have been much easier if I wasn't wearing socks... a little traction goes a long way when precariously perched on a hardcover...

ALSO: whenever the temperature goes above freezing our house starts to smell like something dead. google says if it was a mouse, the smell would have been gone in two days... it has been two months and I am concerned it is the downstairs neighbors... they haven't picked up their mail in quite awhile... at what point should I report "the smell of job security" to our landlord?

Pandora said...

You need some of those special socks with traction strips, specially made for toddlers learning to walk and adults who insist on standing upon shaky objects to change light bulbs.

About the downstairs neighbors...unless you are in the habit of constantly calling your landlord about every loose screw (and why not - the squeaky wheel gets the grease), I don't see the harm in having them check into the scent of death. If you're still unsure, turn up the heat in your apartment, and rent the movie "Sunshine Cleaning." It's an excellent dark comedy that I suspect you will enjoy, but will have you on the phone to the landlord in no time.

Simon said...

That happened once with my neighbor. I had been away house-sitting, and when I came back, the whole building smelled awful, and all I could think was that he had died and was decomposing next door.

Turned out he just hadn't taken his garbage out in, like, weeks. And had apparently had fish for dinner during that period.

So there may be hope.

Sunshine Cleaning is still worth watching, though. It would complement your show about dead people beautifully!

Matthew said...

Ivan I applaud your resourcefulness. The home maintenance section of my bookshelf is solely comprised of my art history text: Gardner's "Art Through the Ages" which is a whopping 3.25" thick, and has a 9"x12" cover. I rarely use it for standing, but often use it for smooshing.