Septober

Septober
"If I can't own up to the inescapable fact that I started out all wrong again,
I will never make anything right."

This morning dawned grey and gloomy. Septober arrived with her usual mope. Autumn never has qualified as even the second runner-up in The Hopeful Seasons Pageant, a little too much goose flesh showing during the Catalina Swimsuit portion of the competition, I suspect. We know where Septober's going. In with a mumble and then out with a slam. It signals the start of a season featuring thick socks, slamming doors, and serious preparations for another overlong hibernation. We should feel cranky when considering this nap time.

The Muse and I head out early tomorrow morning for yet another extended absence from the Villa Vatta Schmaltz High, this time to try to refinish the front of the original Villa Vatta Schmaltz before Septober suspends outside work for another year.
A decade ago, I started refinishing the exterior of that place and, unsurprisingly, the initial face of my work weathered poorly due to poor preparation. I had not yet learned how to properly prep the surface. I worked from ladders, balanced precariously but purposefully, scraping, sometimes in vain. I believe that I could do better now, erecting scaffolding and doing the job righter. The glance face of the place has been showing increasingly poorly and it's past time to start all over again. I'll start all over again, anyway.

Ten years older if not a decade wiser, I feel more than a little foolish as I plot the engagement. I fretted through the summer about how I'd manage to set up the scaffolding, scrape down to bare wood, prime and double top coat in the time I've allotted. A tight time frame might provide focus or it might mother a genuine impossibility, but I've been aching for an authentic impossibility in my life. Nothing like a fool's mission to get my attention. Then, I bumped into an old friend during my last visit there, an old friend who's spent much of the last fifty years as a painter. He's a master by now. So, I phoned him to invite him to serve as my wise advisor. He agreed, so I've found a spotter.

Unsurprisingly, I have not completed any deep dive study into how I might most successfully finish this project. If that house has taught me anything, it's that it prefers to teach me. Whatever clever technique I might bring to the effort, the house holds the deciding vote over whether that trick will prove applicable. It's a wise place, and an insistent one. The proper process will emerge from my focused interaction. I do not begin with the same sort of naiveté I started with that first time, though I cannot yet report on what fresh delusions I bring into this second chapter effort, for these only disclose their presence after some time spent doing something wrong for the very best reasons. I'll likely show up a few days into the project to know at a glance that I'll have to redo at least a day's worth of work. How I respond to this discouraging insight will determine the ultimate success of the engagement. If I can't own up to the inescapable fact that I started out all wrong again, I will never make anything right. I doubt that I've ever started anything on the right track the first time.

©2019 by David A. Schmaltz - all rights reserved








blog comments powered by Disqus