Wednesday, February 06, 2013

An Expedition to the Bowels of the Storage Shed

My move back to Tennessee from Las Vegas was much less of a hassle than my move out there five and-a-half years prior, and y'all don't have to dig too deeply to read all about it.

But since I got back, circumstances have prevented me from having my own apartment again, so most of my household stuff is still in storage, sealed up like an archeological treasure, just waiting to be re-discovered.

And human nature being what it is, all attempts to simplify and not acquire more 'stuff' have been a series of ongoing battles.  I'm too embarrassed to post a picture of my room at my current digs, as I have tons of books, magazines, clothes, office supplies, and other assorted junk cluttering up the joint.  It's not up to Hoarders level just yet, but it's getting to be too much.  I always *plan* on being more organized, but something always distracts me or I find some other more enjoyable ways to spend my time.

Today was a normal Wednesday, and I was grinding out another workday in the cube farm when my alarm chimed on my cell phone, reminding me of another doctor's appointment.  I thought it was going to be a long one, but it was a quick in and out, only getting stabbed in the arm once.  Instead of going back to work (hey, I'm getting paid for the whole day), I decided to bag it and enjoy an all-too-rare sunny day.  I thought about going hiking, but then realized that all of my good wool hiking socks were wet and sitting in the washing machine, having forgotten to put them in the dryer last night before going to bed.

That plan was out, so I decided to tackle the never-ending to-do list that I seem to carry around with me like Earl and his Karma roster.

The first order of business was to stop at the auto parts store and buy a new bubble mirror for the passenger's side rear-view.  My car, as cool as it is, has a huge blind spot, and the drivers here in Tennessee are a lonely sort--they never want to pass, but they love to catch up to you and drive along in your blind spot, like a baby whale next to his mama.  I don't know why that is, I've never encountered that anywhere else, but since my car is basically ALL blind spot, I need a little extra protection from the all the good ol' boys trying to absorb some of my coolness by proximity. I also picked up some wheel polish and tire cleaner, along with a vanilla scented flip-flop air freshener, and if Sunshine and Day Off ever collide, I'm going to detail the hell out my car.  I don't have time to today, and there's a 50% chance of rain tomorrow, anyways.

As soon as I got home, I put the clothes in the dryer and headed back to the bedroom to get a good look at what needed to be done.  I figure that if I only had a decent bookcase in my room, 90% of the clutter would disappear, and then I remembered that I still had a bookcase out in the storage shed.

Unfortunately, it was deep deep DEEP in the storage shed--all the way in the back, buried under dozens of cardboard boxes and plastic storage totes.  And this storage shed is huge--it could easily be a two-car tandem garage and a workshop if anyone was so inclined. Not only does it have all of my stuff, but also a lot of Mamasan's junk, plus all of the camping gear and Christmas storage, too.  And Reverend Dave has used it to store his furniture when he had to spend a few months traveling for work. 

Of course the shed is older than Alabama, and it has a few leaks and holes.  Those leaks and holes invite critters in who seek shelter and more than a few mice have made nests in there, along with possums and the occasional raccoon.  The most unsettling thing came to light last summer when I was helping Reverend Dave get his queen-sized bed out of there when he took a job in Birmingham and had to relocate.  We got the box-spring out first, no problem, but when we pulled his mattress out there was a huge dried out snake skin attached to it.  Oh yeah... No nightmares there!

As an older brother, it was my duty to remind him that the snake is probably hunkered down inside the mattress somewhere and will crawl out once he went to sleep that first night in his new place, providing  a source of heat that snakes love so much...

Since then I don't go out there barefooted anymore, and usually I take work gloves with me, too. 

Today, however, I was in a hurry and just put on shorts, a t-shirt, and sandals.  I packed my whip and lit a torch, and picked my way through the maze of junk and boxes.  I found the bookshelf in question after just a few minutes of searching but it was covered in nastiness.  It had gotten damp over the past two years, and it was home to all kinds of bugs and spiders.  At least there were no snakes.

I found the shelves and set them out in the sun, then went back in for the main unit. Of course it was covered in spiders, mostly harmless Daddy Long Legs, but there were a couple of fat nasty cousins of the black widow that I didn't want to mess with, so I smashed as many as I could find.  Picking it up over my head to carry it out, a few more fell out on me, providing me with both the heebies AND the jeebies. And it's not like I could drop the thing to brush them off of me, so I just had to take it.

I made it back to the safety of the entrance ramp without getting any bites, as far as I could tell, so I hauled everything up to the driveway.  I found some 409 and a sponge, and then blasted the crud off with the hose.  It was a nasty, and cold, job, but after a few minutes drying in the sun, it looked almost new.  No bugs, no spiders, no mold or mildew.

So now I'm spending the afternoon organizing all of the junk in my room and filling up my new-found bookshelves. I'm making progress on my organizational goals, but I am NOT looking forward to the day when I have to go back out and organize the storage shed. 

I'm thinking of hiring some top men to do it for me instead.

Top. Men.


1 comment:

T-Rev said...

Heh. Nice a chuckle out of the spiders.

And yeah, that blindspot is a beatch and a half. Have almost taken out Toyota Prius or two in the last few years!