Have you ever spent all morning cleaning the house and gotten very hungry all of a sudden, and started craving those Trader Joe’s cauliflower pancakes you had in the freezer, but ALSO in the freezer was an overenthusiastic ice maker, which spewed ice over the kitchen floor whenever you opened it, and then, when you closed it and went into the fridge for another tasty and necessary item, you stepped on a piece of ice and started to slip, so you reached down to pick it up, and the fridge attacked you with GUSTO, and the collision it had with your shoulder dislodged the shelving on the side of the fridge door, and everything heavy and full and glass fell and shattered on the kitchen tiles, including that GIGANTIC bottle of gluten-free tamari sauce you bought because it was so much cheaper to buy that way, and then had to spend the next hour trying to mop it all up without cutting yourself too badly, and that damn soy sauce was everywhere. and THEN you remembered how you made this new year’s resolution that when you caught yourself having negative thoughts, you should say, “And this is good because—?” and found yourself thinking, “This is good because now I can feel a little bit sorry for myself without feeling ashamed?” I have.
During summer days we roasted on ladders, scraping and painting our little red house. My sister wore her impossibly orange bikini and basted with baby oil. I wore cutoffs and brought the radio. Never venturing beyond the first story, we must have dribbled half a gallon of stain on the driveway, but at $1 an hour, management wasn’t complaining.
At the end of our shifts, we would wrap the brushes in foil and tuck them in the freezer.
Dubbed “the eternally painted house” by the neighbors, it was perhaps only a marginal improvement over the salmon eyesore it had been.