Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Cabinets Without Words

A week and a day ago, my wife and I went to Schaumburg, Illinois, although the thrill of traveling has by now somewhat subsided.  The toll roads took their toll, and we saw more traffic barrels than we could ever have imagined.  We came back with an entire mini-van full of cabinet kits, which, we hoped would be assembled into a cash-wrap counter for Joyce's store. 

As I unpacked the 64 packages of materials, (yes i counted), I noticed that, although I had hundreds of pages of instructions, among the hundreds of pages there were only about eight words.  The rest was all pictures - complex pictures that required long periods of contemplation and meditation before understanding would dawn.
Here to help me was my little Scandinavian assistant - a little white Ikea guy with lots of willingness, but, sadly, no hands.  First he regaled us with "If I Had a Hammer" and the second verse was "If I had Two Screwdrivers", but, while he was cheerful, he was unable to lend a hand, because he had none. He was not that much help at figuring out what was going on with the assembly..

When he started pitching in, that's when things started to go wrong.  He broke the corner of the box, and he felt bad about that, but poor fellow had only those flippers, and couldn't get much of a grip.  I told him not to worry about it, but, on the other hand, not to touch another goddam thing.
He was sad to have disappointed me, and picked up his accordion to play a sad little song from the old country about the enigmatic injustices and inequities between willingness and abilities.  Of course this left me a mournful feeling for having been so hard on the little fellow.  And I had all the assembly to do myself.
He encouraged me wherever he could, and admired it whenever I got two or three pieces to fit together. That sort of cheered him up.-
But then he got on the phone, and well, that's kind of the last I saw of him. He must have been recalled by the factory.
Well, the next thing you know, the zombies came, either out of the boxes, or little Flipper left the door open and they walked in. One of them had only one leg
They seemed to want to work, and they were very strong. However, I don't think their vision was that great - well, what do you expect of zombies, anyway?  It was like watching an Air Screwdriver competition, turning fasteners that only they could see. Aren't zombies really dead or something awful like that?   I left the windows open.
I found that if I led them to the work, they would keep at it until the job was done.  Required a lot of supervision, but I managed to harness most of the Zombie Power available to me.
But, they were kind of clumsy on their own, and lots of things got broken.  One of them broke off a cabinet leg, and almost dropped the cabinet on someone's finger.

As the job was almost done, some of the zombies got into the refrigerator, and drank all my beer.  That's when they started grunting around, ape-like, lurching into things.  They picked up the cabinets and started spinning them around in the air... Drunken zombies can be very strong, and utmost caution must be employed around them.
Finally, I put my foot down.  I got out a can of Zombie-B-Gon, and brandishing a menacing white spritz, I chased them all out, so I could finish the job myself.
 So, now we have a huge faux wood homemade complex of cabinetry with drawers, doors, shelves, and countertops.  This is a deluxe setup, with door dampers, drawer dampers, and a kick-board around the base.  A black onyx top and some beautiful brushed aluminum handles finish it off.
The Missus approves, and that's all that matters to me. That's me in the red shirt.
Yup, I love her.

Thanks for listening and contributing. I'd love to hear from you.


Sue in Canada said... I am disappeared in the second picture....zombies got you???
Nice job...I have the same crew in my basement as we speak...I am taking out the Zombie-be-gone today if they have not
What does your sweet wife sell?? Girls want to know!!

joyce parker said...

women's apparel shop in milwaukee - Alana Women's Apparel - some is pictured at, and in the last 2 weeks the new Fall stuff is in, Also some jewelry & accessories. Good luck with your basement project!

Lydia said...


You should totally send this to Ikea..

leslie (crookedstamper) said...

Pretty funny, but that counter looks amazing!

And I just ignore those hand-less guys and assemble things myself. :)

Anonymous said...

Hahaha. Came via a google image search for "sad broken corner ikea man", and received in return a splendid accordion gag that I will now always think of when I encounter poor Mr Flippers.