Friday, April 15, 2011

Ms. Direction

I have no problems with "some assembly required." Usually. The ole wedding anniversary is coming up at the end of he month, but with Alex's Auntie Donna coming for a week, Kristi possibly coming for a weekend, the Otter's baby shower and the snip heard round the world (a subject for another time,) there was no time like the present for, well, a present. Alex and I went to Lowes to get Dennis a new grill.

Last year when we got to town Dennis and I realized that it was the first time in our history together that we weren't at least two stories off the ground. It was time to start grillin'! Only one problem: we were really REALLY broke. So on a trip to Lowes we picked up a cheapy grill. Well in the time honored tradition of "you get what you pay for," it was ready for the big BBQ in the sky after 4 months. The lid hinge hanging on by a thread finally gave out a month ago, sealing the sad little grill's fate.

So it was time to get a sturdier model. I knew Den didn't want a gas grill (what's the fun in that?) so I pointed out the charcoal models the last time we went in for veggie seeds and a wheelbarrow. He pointed to one non-commitally, but I knew that was as big a confirmation as I would get without tipping my hand. So here we were, ready to buy.

Got the sucker loaded into the back of the HHR and headed home. Alex fell asleep on the way, so I thought "score! Time enough to assemble." Or is it? I pull in the drive, roll down the windows and leave the monster in his seat. I spread out the pieces, read the directions, then start with #1. I get to #2 and realize the directions weren't clear on the position of the base posts. Soooo back to #1. Get back up to #2, proceed to #3. Notice that the holes for the wheel axle don't line up. The directions didn't mention to look out for this in #1... so it all came apart again and back to #1. Get to back to #3, proceed to #4. Directions didn't mention that the holes on the top of the base were at a slight angle to attach the grill body. And that said angled holes need to be FACING IN. Apart the base went once more and back to ratchet fratchet fringo }¥#*#$;&:$??!!! #1.

After this, Alex woke up. So what would have been a completed grill was only half finished. Now I had a monster on the loose. I pulled out the outside play pen. Alex let me know in no uncertain terms that this was quite unacceptable (read: shrieked his head off to the point that neighbors poked their heads out to see who had lost a limb.) So out onto the lawn he went and the rest of the grill assembly proceeded like this: line up a bolt and nut, turn bolt 2-3 times, say "Alex, come back here buddy." Turn bolt 2 more times, run around the car, grab runaway monster, tote him back. Rinse, repeat. By the time the grill was put together, tulips had been de-petaled, enough dandelion seeds had been dispersed to weed the entire neighborhood, baby shoes were missing, baby socks were nearly black and I had a sunburned neck {insert lower Delaware joke here X}. I rolled my finished project to the back lawn and walked away from it shaking my head. What should have taken 40 minutes took 2 and a half hours. *sigh*

In the end, Dennis likes his grill, Alex got to play outside on a pretty day and I didn't have any spare parts left over. All indicators that things started with the best intentions, while sometimes taking a crazy path, finish with great results.

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