The Best Laid Plans

English: Picture of a common measuring tape in...

…of mice and men, gang aft agley.

Which is Scottish for, “get seriously fouled up.”

This is a post about failure.  Specifically, it is about my failure to remodel our homeschool room.  If you’ve been with me a while, you may recall a post entitled Handy Man, which detailed my singular lack of ability when it comes to things mechanical.  At the end of that post, I announced an upcoming project to transform our homeschool room from a drab, cluttered deathtrap to a sparkling cathedral of delight, using the cast off kitchen cabinets of a friend.  My strong young son was going to help me, and together we would change (a little tiny portion of) the world.

So, yeah, not so much.

Let me say, at the outset, that Alec is in no way responsible for this debacle.  The oopsification took place before he even had a chance to get involved.

You see, I had committed the grievous transgression.

I had done it before.

I knew better.

I had even chided myself for it in the pages of this blog.



I assumed.

“You know, when you assume you make an…”


I know.

That’s why it hurts so very much.

I kept the cabinets in my garage for weeks, with the intent of installing them over Thanksgiving Break.  I marked the days out on the calendar, I made my list, I borrowed painting equipment, I bought paint and nails and screws and other manly accoutrements.

Finally, on the anointed, appointed day, I marked off an area the dimensions of the homeschool room on our back patio and dragged the cabinets out of the garage.  I played jigsaw puzzle, pushing cabinets around to find the best fit.

They didn’t.

Fit, that is.

With all the preparations that I had made, I had neglected the most basic one.  I had neglected to measure the cabinets to ensure that they would fit the space.  I had just assumed that they would fit.

There’s that word again.


You’d think I would learn.

The cabinets are back in the garage.

You know, I don’t think I’ve ever embarked upon a project that hasn’t involved injury, extra expense, or emergency bailouts from friends.  Often my projects involve all three.

There’s something vaguely Charlie-Brown-and-the-kite-eating-treeish about the whole thing.

My daughter has asked me, on more than one occasion, “Dad, why do you say embarrassing things about yourself in your blog?”  A good question, and one I have time to ponder since I’m not remodeling the homeschool room. I suppose it’s because I sincerely believe that I’m not alone in my foibles.  Perhaps it would be better for Mankind if I were, but I don’t think I am.  I like the idea that someone out there might, from time to time, read this blog and think, “I’ve done that!”  It might foster a sense of camaraderie.  We’re in this together, and all that.  On the other hand, perhaps you’ve never done the kinds of things I do, or made the kinds of mistakes I’ve made.  Then, you get to feel a bit superior, and who doesn’t like that once in a while.

Either way, I feel that I am providing a needed service.

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