Thursday, March 24, 2011

Trapped In the Closet

One of my fondest memories growing up is the time that I spent the weekend at the Concord with my friend Dave & his family at a convention they were attending. The weekend was memorable for a couple of reasons: the Concord had a sick arcade (and I could play a mean Zaxxon) and the convention had all kinds of freebies, like these slick little paper cutters that made us feel like we were packing heat. But the biggest hit was the fact that his parents let us sleep in the closet of the hotel room. I slept near the door and Dave slept on the elevated interior, which meant that he rolled down on top of me a couple of times, but that didn't matter because it felt like we had our own - poorly decorated and awfully cramped - little world in that closet.

I'm hoping that's exactly how excited Finn was when we pitched him into the closet of our room at my parents' house in Key West, as shown above.

In preparation for his weekend sharing digs with the laundry, we moved him out of his crib earlier this month. This was a big step - probably more so for Mommy, who had a hard time letting go of the crib and has even moved his crib bumper into his new bed - but it was overdue. If left to his own devices, Finn would have happily been carried to college in his crib, having never shown one iota of interest in leaving it.

Finn offered to help me break the crib down and even went and grabbed his plastic saw, which reminded me of how I put the crib together. I've never been one for reading directions too carefully, mostly just glancing at the pictures and trusting that I'll figure out how to make it all fit together. This approach works great when I'm playing around with software on the computer, but the confidence is questionable in the real world considering that it's never worked. Not once.

The crib was no exception. I got it 75% put-together, but the side rails weren't quite lining up. They were too wide for the frame by about an inch. After swearing at whatever illiterate Chinese sweatshop kid had managed to screw this up, I attempted to fix the issue the only way I knew how: with the circular saw. After cutting off both sides on one rail, I realized that I couldn't possibly cut off the sides on the other since there were pieces on it that were clearly needed to attach it to the sides of the crib. After scratching my head for an hour or two, I decided to do the unthinkable: read the directions.

It was then that I learned that I had used the wrong bolt holes to assemble the frame. Once that was fixed, the whole thing fit together perfectly - on the untouched side. Once I managed to locate and reattach the pieces I had previously sawed off, I was able to get the whole thing together again, albeit with a nice scar on the back rail to remind me of what an idiot I am.

It's a good thing that I'm not going to be my son's only male role model. He'll also have my brother, who knows his way around a tool box. Here he is showing Finn how use a power drill to reattach the [insert critical part] that I have mistakenly removed.

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