Monday, September 3, 2012

Two Sides

I can read backwards and upside down. It’s really helpful when the kids bring home notes from school as I can scan the note quicker than they can tell me what it’s about. Therefore, I can seem fully knowledgeable about whatever it is about as if the teacher or principal has already talked to me.   Somehow our kidlets tend to ‘fess up’ quicker if they think I already know about it. Works wonders on the soul.
I still cannot fathom my husband’s mind, no matter which way I try to read it.
I have a 1946 Willys flatfender Jeep. For some reason the gas tank ended up with tons of debris in it over last winter and I couldn’t get it running this last spring. The full filters kept clogging up. Cleaning the carb (there’s a sweet little 289 stuffed under the hood) didn’t help, so it sat all spring and most of this summer.

At first my hubby tried to talk me into buying a new tank. My current one is a custom double tank. Since I only get, (clearing throat), ummm, about 6 miles to the gallon, I need as big a tank as possible.
So Steve ended up pulling the tank for me last week and drained out the old gas. He’s been working diligently to try to clean the tank out with old chains and muriatic acid. Since the tank sits under the front seats he had to pull off the seats to get the tank out. It would be a great time to wire brush the floor boards, as well as the exterior of the tank and paint both.
Steve offered to paint. I’ve seen his paint jobs so I declined. He had just pored paint onto the roof of our house when he went up to paint “just for a minute” without putting down tarps. Our roof is steeply pitched so when he set the almost full paint can down “just for a minute”, the paint in the can spilled over the edge of the can and onto our roof’s black shingles. The color of the paint is a buttercream. It didn’t blend in with the roofing. He rubbed off all of the grit on over a square foot area trying to clean it off. He thought I wouldn't notice.

To say I wasn’t happy is an understatement. I was mad. Really mad. I asked Steve if we discussed the reasoning for laying down canvas tarps prior to painting. He agreed we had. Other than replacing the shingles, there isn’t a lot that can be done to fix the newly painted bald shingles. Good thing it’s on the far back side of the house.
Back to my Willys. I declined Steve’s offer to paint the tank. He said he had some black gloss Rustoleum. I told him I didn’t want my tank black gloss. He said that it would only be on ‘mostly the bottom’ of the tank. I insisted that it was my rig and I didn’t want the tank painted in gloss as the rest is painted in matted army green with a matte black interior. I would paint the tank myself, thank you. After all, I had successfully painted an entire Toyota pickup and a full sized Chevy Blazer in camo. I know how to rattle a can very well. End of discussion.
As Steve was ready to head out the door yesterday morning he mentioned that he was installing the tank in the Willys and would I like to fire it up? I told him that I would paint the tank and floor boards that afternoon as I needed to take Kidlet school shopping, so he would need to wait for a few hours.
That's when he said, “I already painted it.”
SAY WHAT? I couldn’t believe my ears. I asked him if we had just had a conversation about that subject a few days before. He affirmed that we had. I asked him what I had said when he offered to paint the tank for me. He acknowledged that I had said “NO”.
“But I already had black gloss paint and I didn’t want you to have to spend money and I needed to get that project done NOW and I can’t waste time waiting for you but you can go ahead and paint over it if you want to but I don’t understand why it can’t be gloss black on mostly the bottom…“ he retorted.
I was livid. I asked him again how he could interpret my “NO” for anything other than “NO”. He kept insisting that he had to get the project done and he was tired of stuff not getting done. Of course he didn’t mention his Buick that has been sitting in his shop and not drivable for the last seven years.
I tried to explain to him that you can’t just paint over gloss. It has to be sanded down. My Hubster just doesn’t understand anything about painting. He doesn’t ‘get’ prep work.
Still fuming, I left to take Kidlet school shopping. I love shopping with him. He’s a ‘run in & grab something’ shopper like myself. I’ve taught him well.
By the time we returned home, the Hubster had indeed wirebrushed all the gloss paint off with a drill and rotary brush. Today I will go buy the paint for the tank and floorboards.
I still don’t understand Steve’s sudden time crunch for getting my tank back in. I don’t know what it was about me declining his offer to paint that HE didn’t understand. He doesn't understand why he can't just do whatever he wants, and by gosh, 'who cares' and 'what does it matter?'
I’m trying to find something about this to laugh at.


  1. Oh, you are so talented and I so knew you'd be a car lovin kinda girl. I dont have a vintage but I do have a very nice (shhhhh V8 Ford). Its a Ghia so it has all the whistles and bells. I bought it second hand so dont go thinking i'm rich. But, I took it out of the city this weekend (6hr run up north to my home - my step father died) and it cruised up and back on 10.3L/100km. Normally around the city I am on 14-15/100km. The funeral - Lord, what a mess. Robert didnt want me to go. He doesnt understand family relationships and also doing what's right rather than what you want. He didnt want me to go away (he couldnt take a day off as he has a new job he's already trying to leave) and so told me I couldnt. We had an all out blue and in the end he was divorcing me and I got in the car and went. It was important to me that I was at home with my family. He had been married to my mother for 35 years. I got back last night and said that I was disappointed that he hadnt even called my mother to offer condolences. He said he would do it when he was ready (i dont think he even thought about it). My family have stood by him so many times, when secretly they have all wanted me to walk out years ago and yet I am very close to his mother and have gone out of my way for a father in law that's not very nice. I was very torn between wanting to go and keeping the peace but decided that I had to make a stand on this one. I did the right thing and he will now know there are limits. PS. he didnt pack his bag, I noticed.

    1. i guess sometimes we just need to tell our spouse that we have to agree to disagree and that we have to be true to ourselves - family dynamics can be so crazy - *sigh *