Friday, March 12, 2010

Tamales and Tablecloths

 "It would be a stretch to say that I enjoyed coaxing mattresses up five flights of stairs, but it was nice to work as part of a team. The money was nothing compared with what other people earned answering phones or slipping suppositories into the rectums of senior citizens [but] The cash was bounce-proof and most everyone included a tip."
--David Sedaris, Me Talk Pretty One Day

The old saying is "friends help you move; real friends help you move bodies." I think after the age of 30, it's time to leave behind the days of exchanging beer and pizza for heavy manual labor. As with so much in life, there are people you can pay to do those things for you.

I can't remember the name of the company I used last time, but I do remember they broke two lamps; I tipped them heavily; I provided cold soft drinks and bottled water; and when they admired the contents of my freezer, I sent them each home with a package of thick-cut bone-in rib-eyes. Their crew chief' was a giant of a guy named Roméo (not pronounced like Juliet's boyfriend, but rhyming, instead, with Rodeo Drive). I thought he might come back later and kill me. I'm still surprised he didn't.

We used an actual convict crew the last time we moved the office, and they were quite a bit more pleasant, BUT every time my back was turned, they had the Interns carrying their own desks. (It's not that I might not someday ask an intern to move a desk, but I didn't think convicted felons should take such cavalier liberties.)

Finding painters is proving a little more problematic. I actually like to paint, and I'm pretty good at it, but I haven't really had the equipment to do it right (ladders, dropcloths, extenders, etc.) since I sold the last place (where I actually kept scaffolding in the basement, just in case I needed it).

One friend recommended a guy who "painted the exterior of my little shack for cheap and his wife sent me tamales. He did send a cousin to do most of the work, and at one point we had a communication error that left me thinking that I had either agreed to pay him $200 for a tablecloth that his mother would make...or that she was coming to live with me." Well. That sounds awkward, but... I am pretty sold on the idea that they "did a great job for about a third of the other estimates." 

I do like tamales, but I am not a big fan of tablecloths or roommates.

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