I’M A MAN. I LIKE TO FIX THINGS. And I love saying those reassuring words: “Leave it to me!” But my wife has been my wife for too long. And she doesn’t find “Leave it to me!” reassuring. Over coffee last week, she reminded me (nicely) of times past when my DIY resulted in embarrassing bungles …
Like the day when John-the-Mechanic put a new battery in our car – “See, piece of cake!” But when the terminal proved a tight fit, he did what any man would do. He tapped it down with a hammer. He tapped it again just to make sure. Then tapped it one last time, just in case. At which point (whoops!) that brand new battery cracked from top to bottom! And that leaky acid burnt holes all through his jeans!
On another occasion, John-the-Electrician replaced the fraying cord in our old iron. “Leave it to me!” he smiled, reaching for his screwdriver and pliers. A new cord was cut to length, the small wires were connected to the iron, and same for the plug. “Done!” he cried, holding it up for inspection. But (whoops!) he had rewired the plug onto a leftover length of cord – not to the iron at all!
Then, one weekend, John-the-Glazier hung a big mirror in our ensuite. “Just hold it steady!” he told his wife, using a push-drill to mark the drill-holes on the bathroom wall. But (whoops!) he pushed the push-drill too hard – plunging through the gib-board, and smashing the corner off our mirror!
However, our most costly DIY disaster occurred when John-the-Painter tripped over a very full tray of paint. And several litres of white acrylic were flung – literally and spectacularly FLUNG – all over our lounge! It dripped from the hairs on my legs … clung to our brand new sofa … and lay in pools on our expensive grey carpet.
You wanna hear about the clean-up? Nope, sorry. This is a family magazine!
THESE DAYS, JOHN (GRAPEVINE’S FOUNDER & ‘BIG CHEESE’) IS LESS LIKELY TO SAY “LEAVE IT TO ME!” – AND MORE LIKELY TO SAY “LOOK, I SAID I WOULD DO IT, AND I WILL. YOU DON’T HAVE TO REMIND ME EVERY SIX MONTHS!”