Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Duct Tape and Me

You know, fellow gentlemen bloggers, I don't think the female gender duly appreciates all the fixit stuff we do around the house. Nor do they understand what we’re about when we’re in fixit mode, which in turn I don’t understand. As men, we are extraordinarily creative in our approach to problem solving, oftentimes with the simplicity of a four-year-old's mind. Any woman worth her salt should understand the thinking processes of a four-year-old boy, but they get angry with us instead.

For example, the door rails on our refrigerator were cracked and broken, so that every stinking time we opened the door all the door shit fell out on the floor. Boy, what a pain in the toes that was. Martha suggested I visit Sears and buy some replacement rails, but I knew there was a much simpler and cheaper solution:

(Click on each photo to get a better view of my handiwork.)

Then there was the time our hot water heater ran out of heated water. Martha must think that hot water heaters grow on trees, but I knew that with a few minor adjustments I could fix ours for free:

By the time I was finished the hot water was positively lukewarm, a good sign, but I had bits of insulation up my nose and stuck in my teeth for a week.

Another project involved one of our idiot neighbors, but there’s so many of them I have no idea which one ran their car over our mailbox and totaled it (the mailbox, that is, the one with our name on it and everything). Once again, moneybags Martha wanted me to buy a new box and a post when I had everything I needed in the garage just waiting to be used:

Yup, that's a mason jar that once held my mother-in-law’s delicious dill pickles. And the post is from our marriage bed frame—I am, after all, a Romantic. The beauty of using glass for a mailbox is I can look out the living room window and see if there’s any mail stuck in the jar. If it’s empty, all I have to do is yell to Martha, “Nope, no papers from the divorce court yet!”

I cannot end this without defending the manhood of us male fixit guys. Maybe our projects don’t always turn out perfectly because none of us is perfect. We do it to help out, sure, but mostly we do it because we love you, be you a wife, a girlfriend or boyfriend, or a one-night stand.

So give us a fooking break once in a while, will you?


savannah said...

the MITM has the same attitude i do regarding repairs - if it costs less than his billable rate, he'll call someone to fix it. he believes in doing his part to support the local economy, sugar! xoxoxo

Robert the Skeptic said...

Duct tape is one of the triumphs of modern man. This link shows it being used to repair an airplane in India: http://tinyurl.com/y2529ue (no joke).

The ONLY thing I have heard the duct tape is NOT recommended for is... you guessed it: duct work.

That's right; for taping ducts together, use "foil" tape, not duct tape. Duct tape is not for ducts.

Hey, it makes perfect sense to me!!!

Fay's Too said...

What can I say, Charlie. I'm so very glad you're not my surgeon.

Alice said...

If it won't move and it should - WD-40. If it moves and it shouldn't - Duct Tape. The only two tools you need. (except a knife for a screwdriver and a shoe for a hammer) Incidentally, the world headquarters for duct tape is five minutes from my home.

Ponita in Real Life said...

In my house, I'M Mr Fixit.... and I'm often just as creative as you guys are. ;-)

mapstew said...

Charlie, that was indeed fookin foony!

We dare not get on stage without at least two rolls of duct tape!


(WV = adentend!)

TechnoBabe said...

This is so funny. I had to show the mailbox to my hubby. Our mailbox is similar but without the glass jar. He used electrical wire to wrap around two metal posts that he hammered into the ground anyway it is hard to explain, just that I thought it was a temporary fix and turns out he has no thoughts of changing it. Ours is the unique mailbox in the cul-de-sac. Thanks for the good laugh, Charlie!

Charlie said...

SAVANNAH: I support the local economy by paying a pro double to fix my screw-ups. They usually give me a little discount, though, for a good laugh.

ROBERT: Just another example of the absurdities of life.

FAY: So am I—I have an aversion to icky stuff. But you know, duct tape would be better than stitches because it wouldn't leave a scar.

ALICE: WD-40 is another of man's great inventions, right behind duct tape.

Do they have an outlet store at world headquarters?

PON: That's kinda scary: a nurse with the intelligence of a four-year-old.

It's nice to know, though, that you are acquainted with the fine art of jerry-rigging.

MAP: Glad you had a laugh. And I know bands use a ton of tape for cables and stuff—you'd look like idiots tripping over everything.

BABE: I love it: your hubby has no intentions of changing it. Unless he likes the glass idea.

Pat said...

Heath Robinson is alive and well and living in Arizona.
You are a hoot Charlie but you've talked your way out of being a toy boy;)

Stinkypaw said...

Ah duct tape, every men's answers. At times, no matter how well intentioned one man can be, duct tape is not the answer!

Must say, I like the glass mail box, seems practical and all.

laytonwoman3rd said...

I have a little piece of duct tape stuck to my thumb right now---it removes warts. Really.

Samm said...

There were so many funny comments up top :) glad I read most of them...

-Samm :)

PS my third grade teacher would have given you three smiley face stickers on your craft project, Charlie.

Kim Ayres said...

You can use it for tidying up your bikini line too...

laytonwoman3rd said...


Charlie said...

PAT: I'm sorry, but I'm not familiar with Heath Robinson. I'm betting, though, that he's quite brilliant.

STINKY: I agree that duct tape isn't the solution to everything—it's no good, for example, for duct work.

And you like my glass mailbox! I'm thinking of putting a lid on it so the rain doesn't ruin all my junk mail.

LINDA: If it works for warts, I wonder if it works like Preparation H—only much much faster.

SAMM: Not MY third grade teacher. Since I went to Catholic school, creativity and thinking for oneself was highly discouraged. Not the party line, you see.

KIM: That's the second time in a week my bikini line has been mentioned: Map said something stupid about it too.

LINDA: Thank you for shrieking and waking up the hounds.

lisleman said...

thanks for the invite over to see the duct tape wonders.
I do enjoy the challenge of fixing something with whatever is laying around. That brings to another disagreement - stuff laying around. Of course you need lots of odds and ends because you don't know what challenge is coming next.

Diane said...

LOL LOL.....I wish my husband was half as innovated as you Charlie.

Meg said...

Duct tape is also good for wrapping presents. Here's a fun project for you to try:

Step 1: Get Martha something sparkly that comes in a tiny box.

Step 2: Wrap it in Christmas paper (or newspaper).

Step 3: Wrap the wrapped present with duct tape -- half a roll should do fine.

Step 4: Place sheets, pillow and blanket on the couch.

Step 5: Hand her the present.

Step 6: Retreat to readied couch.

Ponita in Real Life said...

Charlie, I am my father's daughter... So it's Ms Fixit... but I can change personas when Nurse Ponita needs to work. The ability to jerry-rig things comes in handy when doing complicated dressing changes on patients. ;-)

You can buy duct tape bandages, you know... I've seen them at Home Depot.

Charlie said...

LISLEMAN: There is a clutter problem, unless you "stick" directly to repairs with your handy tape.

DIANE: No you don't. Believe me. You are a sane woman, and it would be nice if you stayed that way.

MEG: MEG! What in the world of duct tape are you suggesting in Step 6???

PONITA: As an official jerry-rigger, I salute you. (A lot of people don't know that term.)

Ah, those bandages are made to look like duct tape--pretty neat for the guy (or gal) who has everything.

Meg said...

That's where you'll be sleeping! Alone.

I know about this one. ;) My silly husband did that last Christmas. He didn't ready the couch.

Barbara Bruederlin said...

Oh dear, I think we must be related. I buy duct tape by the caseload and have fixed everything from woodpeckers holes in the siding, to cat scratches on the chesterfield. Casa del Zombie is a classy place.

hope said...

While I was waiting for the "Maintenance Guy" at work to come fix a broken window pane at our Sr. Center, I placed a thin board over the missing glass. And yes, I duct taped it in place.

Two problems with that:
1. The Maint. Guy was in awe that I'd found BLACK duct tape.

2. He thought I'd done such a good job, he didn't want to replace the window. But he did....because a group of senior citizen women make a lot of noise. Well, if you can't reach the roll of duct tape. ;)

papa t said...

glass mailbox clear genius, you need a patent attorney

Murr Brewster said...

I'm all for you defending your manhood, but god forbid it ever needs fixing.

Charlie said...

MEG: Sleeping alone! Perish the thought! Give Mr. Meg a break, like I said in the post. It's the message that counts, not the medium.

BARB: It's eerie, how much alike we are. Not only are we masters of taping with duct, we both like to chat a mile a minute with our mouths full of food. Boy, some fun we could have.

HOPE: You're an impressive woman. And I would never have guessed that a group of senior ladies make a lot of noise.

Actually, duct tape comes in different colors for different puposes. I have to use red tape because it's for stucco—if I used regular old gray, all the stucco would pull away from the chicken wire underneath it.

PAPA: The drawback to glass is that thieves can see (and smell) gov't checks a mile away, and lots of people don't use direct deposit. The same thing would happen to my copies of Nudist Quarterly magazine.

MURR: I've made other arrangements to fix my manhood, should it ever be damaged.

Unknown Mami said...

I think mostly you do it because you are too "frugal" and too "busy" to go to Sears.

papa t said...

ahh yes I'm still alittle naive

Joanna Cake said...

LMAO! Brilliant! I too am a fan of duct tape :)

Charlie said...

MAMI: You are a PC person, aren't you. It's okay—you could have said I'm cheap and lazy because it's twue, it's twue.

PAPA: It's still a damn good idea, isn't it. A lot of people don't get checks or Nudist Quarterly in the mail, so glass would work fine.

JOANNA: Having perused your blog, I suspect you can think of about a million things to do with duct tape—erotically, of course.

That opens a whole new world to me—to hell with hot water heaters and mailboxes.

Tiffin said...

Do you have Red Green suspenders, Charlie? Red Green is the Canadian King of Duct Tape. When one of my lads was about 12, he took an entire roll of duct tape to camp with him "just in case". When he found a bigger kid bullying a little guy he duct taped him to a tree.

It comes in wonderful colours now.

Shellie (Layers of Thought) said...

This is a good one Charlie -
Late to comment but never the less laughing...My only thought is the last picture doesn't look like the phoenix area.... more mountain like... I love duct tape and wine corks.. what I've done with those one can only imagine.