Tearing Out The Walls

Yesterday afternoon I tore down a wall.

I should have taken pictures, I suppose… but someone had built a wall dividing the basement landing in half. It makes a certain twisted sense if you were renting out four of the five rooms downstairs and keeping the other downstairs room, the one at the foot of the stairs, for storage (storage on a heap!1) but as with other recent modifications, this one was done incompetently.

First, they’d avoided the problem of having to relocate the ceiling light fixture by not relocating the ceiling light fixture, but rather by assembling the wall with a hole in it. Second, they’d created this masterpiece using at least ten different kinds of fasteners – short Phillips head screws in some places, 4″ common nails, 2″ common nails, 1″ and 2″ finish nails, long #2 Robertson screws, long and short #1 Robertson screws, drywall screws – although these weren’t holding on any drywall – that was nailed on with finish nails.

The mix of nails and screws meant that I had to cut the header to pull it out. Once I got that out, I was able to pry the jambs from the walls pretty easily – the screws holding them on were not into studs, which is good, because some bozo had filled the screw heads with filler that I couldn’t get out.

The longest part of the whole deal was disassembling the structures afterward. I am loathe to throw away a perfectly good length of 2×4. Even full of screw- and nail-holes, pieces of 2×4 are useful to have around. So when I cut the header, I did it as close to one end as possible, and after I took the wall out I spent a good hour breaking the posts down to get the lumber out of them. As one who largely eschews the use of anti-perspirant, I smelled quite manly by the end.

In other news, HouseApe 1.o decided some time ago that she wanted to try the Royal Canadian Air Cadets, so last night I walked her up the street to the hall, which is conveniently located about a 10 minute walk north.

I joined Air Cadets at 14. Our squadron was run out of a room at one end of the high school cafeteria. The Supply Officer was also the Adjutant, and he sat about 3 feet to the left of the CO. Supply was out of a large cupboard on one side.

This squadron has its own building. There is a huge supply room. There are offices for all of the senior officers. There are classrooms upstairs. There is a lounge, a separate canteen. It’s a really nice building, in other words. And it houses a big, well-organized, happening squadron.

It’s all very exciting and new. New venues bring new horizons, new opportunities. But I worry that HA1.0 has joined cadets just because I was a cadet, and while it is flattering if that is the case, I hope that she is doing things for her own reasons rather than because she thinks I want her to.


  1. That’s a database joke! We get to make them from time to time.

One Response

  1. Chris
    Chris December 2, 2010 at 1:22 pm | | Reply

    I don’t think you have to worry about any of our kids doing things just because they think we want them to. They’re all pretty opinionated and while they might be interested initially because it’s something you or I did, they won’t stick with it unless they genuinely want to. And I can’t see a downside to cadets, to be honest. She was certainly excited enough when she came home last night, and none of them get that excited about doing what we want, bedtime being a prime example.

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