How to Avoid the Walk of Shame
This Dog Bites

Me and My Makita (queue Harry Nilsson) or Put the Lime in the Coconut and Shake it all Up!


Have you ever seen those ridiculous little plastic brackets with tiny metal (maybe) pins that slide into pre-drilled holes and are meant to hold up empty pantry shelves? Yeah, I've seen them too. Mostly in shattered pieces on my kitchen floor along with the contents of my pantry. Five years. It took me five years to decide I'd had enough and stop replacing the ridiculous little plastic brackets with more ridiculous little plastic brackets.

We had fun, Cletus and I; Cletus took the pictures which I cannot get off my camera without the reader (lostmisplaced AGAIN) and I crawled into the pantry and was set loose with My Makita ™ , sixteen brackets and a mess of one inch screws. It is a shame that I cannot show you the pictures Cletus took while holding a small flashlight, doling out screws and making derogatory comments about my inability to screw in anything straight (I don't know if a pun was intended and quite frankly I do not WANT to know if a pun was intended).

The best part was the red nightshirt. I bought one of those old fashioned down to the knees heavy red cotton night-shirts for Nomans a few years ago and then promptly co-opted it after making him wear it once so I could roll around on the floor doing a fine impersonation of a hyena. Yesterday at 4:41 precisely I looked at Cletus (this was before we got to the mayhem part of the day) and asked, 'on a Sunday is it socially acceptable to put one's jammies on at 5 PM?' Cletus acknowledged that it was indeed socially acceptable if not expected. So I pushed the envelope. 'Cletus, is it OK then to do so maybe 19 minutes early?' She said, 'of course, don't be silly, woman.'

And this is how I came to be wearing a red cotton nightshirt with my hair in binder clips (OK, it was a hairband but I'm trying to paint a picture here so work with me and besides, it's not as if I never use binder clips to keep my hair out of my face mostly at work) and my glasses sliding off my nose (my OLD glasses because I still haven't had the NEW glasses fixed which The Sailor stepped on and squashed flat because I left them on the floor where no one in his right mind given the circumstances could possibly have missed stepping on them) sitting on my butt in a closet with a shit eating grin on my face and a fully charged cordless drill in my hands.

I ought to mention there was a bit of a fuss when it came to actually locating the drill and then the appropriate drill bits. After Daddy cleaned out the garage locating all of these things ought to have been effortless but I didn't feel like going to the garage in my nightshirt and Cletus's talents do not lie in the finding of things she has no interest in using. I made her go anyway. When she came upstairs with the cordless Makita in its cute little green case I about swooned. I hadn't seen that thing in years and it is most assuredly M. I. N. E. Not inherited from a single other person, male or otherwise. Mine. I think Florkow and I bought them at the same time which makes this thing at least twelve years old.

Wait. Back the truck up. Florkow and I with matching fully charged Makita cordless drills and a full set of drill bits (I swear, sometimes we drilled holes for the sake of drilling holes and worked out what to plug them with later). Savor the various and assorted images of possible mass destruction but at the very least absolute mayhem that pop into your mind for a moment...

Cletus came upstairs with drill bits too. I explained screw size in relationship to hole in wall in relationship to size of drill bit. She furrowed her brow and I could see her trying to work out if I could just fudge it but I must have been looking very stern at the time because she went back downstairs and came up with a full set and we got to work.

I should mention that the shelves collapsed last Tuesday morning as Ceilo and Wubby and I were about on our way out the door and Ceilo and I shoveled everything back in, slammed the pantry doors shut and then fortified the barricade with a large bag of garbage and a kitchen chair. It stayed that way (and might have for weeks (I can be very creative in terms of not needing anything out of the pantry or anywhere else although the bag of garbage would have been replaced with a fresher bag of garbage... I'm joking... maybe.) if Cletus hadn't moved the barricade and opened the doors looking for a can of soup. Oh, she got soup for sure.

That was Tuesday afternoon. On Wednesday I cleaned out the cabinets thus removing once and for all (for at least two weeks anyway, I'm sure of it now where the hell did that giant box of bay leaves go?) the cereal moth infestation, replaced the ridiculous plastic thingies with the last spares (you must always have spares of things that break frequently) and started putting cans back on shelves. I didn't get very far and the entire contents of four pantry shelves lived on the kitchen floor until yesterday because I walked away in disgust and defeat and proceeded to pretend that it hadn't happened and don't your pantry contents live in the middle of your kitchen floor? I thought so.

Yesterday I'd had enough. On the way back from the Agway where we picked up 188 lbs (330 foot roll 47 inches) of field fencing which proceeded to roll back and forth slamming into the sides of a vehicle never meant to hold anything other than Louis Vuitton luggage we stopped by Ye Olde Center of Town (it is NOT a strip mall, Ceilo, it's half a square. Honestly, you want our taxes to go up AGAIN so we can fix it?) Hardware Shoppe, picked up 16 brackets with serious attitude (read: overkill) and a mess of screws. As per above it took us until well after I'd gotten into my jammies to actually get to the fixing but eventually it did happen. Not because I wanted to get the cans off the floor; it was because the drill was finally charged and I felt like making holes in something.

It took awhile. I did get in there with the brackets and mark out appropriate holes either under or over the originals (I do own a level. I have no idea where it is. Do I really need it? NO.) but Cletus didn't see that and thought I was just randomly drilling holes. In any other circumstances she might have been right so I can't very call that betrayal now can I?

There is a reason we never got around to brackets. One side of the pantry is against a wall and so I eventually hit sheetrock. Nifty. The other side of the pantry is against either the bottom cabinets (got to check on that) or thin air.



And I don't want to hear a single word about my inability to drill a straight hole or put a screw or nail in straight (my first plan, by the way, was to hammer nails in halfway and just rest the shelves on those) I've already heard it from Cletus (who CAN drill straight holes and put screws and nails in straight but was having a lot more fun laughing at me).

Below is the text from Nomans after I sent him the photo having remembered the reason we didn't do this in the first place:

Brackets to fix a wonky shelf: $3.69
Decorative hooks to fix a minor mistake: $12.42
Creating additional hooks to hang utensils on: Priceless

I want it noted that it was CLETUS who suggested we just shore it up with duct tape. Not me, oh no, not me.