Cleanin’ Out the Shed Ad Nauseam

When we bought the Landfill 22 years ago, our budget could handle a house on The Planet Ann Arbor with either a garage or a basement. Not both. Despite the fact that we have owned at least three vee-hickles for probably 21 of those 22 years, we opted for the basement.

So, where do we put the lawnmower and the bicycles and the shovels and the rakes and the sledgehammer and that big heavy metal pole that reams out the pipe to the toilet and all the excess lumber and that big metal picture of the Marine with the green swastika spray-painted over it?

A Courtois artifact that defies description

Well, some of it just sits out beside the house and thank god the Burkes are nice enough to ignore it. The rest is in the shed.

I hate the shed. It is an rickety old metal thing that Whatzizname Price, the previous owner, put in the back of the yard. There is a beam through the middle of it that I always bump my head on and the sheets of plywood that pass for a floor are always flopping around so that when you try to sweep it out, half of the debris ends up *under* the floor. Which really doesn’t much matter, I guess. Rumor has it that kids used to somehow use the shed as a shortcut to get to Haisley School through the woods. Until Price caught somebody peeing off the roof.

There’s always all kinds of dirt, crap (literally), crud and corruption in the shed. About once every couple of years some aminal dies underneath it and stinks up the back yard for a few days. It has been three years since anyone (that would be me) last cleaned out the shed and it was worse today than I have ever seen it. Mouse turds, cobwebs, and acorns absolutely everywhere and a wasp nest and the pile of “lumber” was just teeming with ants and their larvae. At least that’s what I *thought* it was. I drowned the whole mess. Sorry kids.

Cleaning out the shed is one of my least favorite chores and the reason is that I can never seem to get rid of anything!!! I haul everything out and try to sweep the cobwebs off it all. Then I [try to] sweep the shed floor. Today after sweeping whatever crud and crap I could sweep out of there, I found a relatively high-pressure hose nozzle and sprayed everything down including the interior of the shed. It even looked somewhat clean when I was done. And then. I had to put all of that crap back in there. Obviously there isn’t much incentive to do this ugly chore if it accomplishes so little.

We have had our share of arguments about junk today. One of my favorite things to talk about [sarcasm] and very typical conversation after 24 years [not sarcasm, unfortunately]. During one of today’s little debates, we both got fed up and as I blurted out, “Well, maybe you will die someday,” he simultaneously blurted out, “Well, maybe I will die someday.” Sorry, the humor is often a bit morbid around here in the last year.

I won a couple of small battles this time. A few things went into the recycle bin or our handy-dandy “A2 Cart.” Close the lid quick! Two or three things are ear-marked to head up to Houghton Lake (more art 😉 ) or Siberia (charcoal). The old broken push mower is out by the street. Free. The old broken log splitter is not. “Just needs a little welding.” Roight. The metal swastika/Marine apparently gets used as a “slider.” When, I do not know, it is always covered with cobwebs. And don’t ask me what a “slider” is either. In this context, I do not know.

Sugar and Jealousy I am going to keep, even though there aren’t any little kids around here to love them any more. Mouse used to tether them on the front porch while the girls were in school and my job was to feed them bowls of warm water. They are my friends and the very brave Sugar once helped us rescue some very cute snowballs from others-who-are-not-girls at the schoolyard. I can’t get rid of them.

Sugar and Jealousy

2 Responses to “Cleanin’ Out the Shed Ad Nauseam”

  1. Webmomster Says:

    “Sliders”??? Those are otherwise known as “White Castle Burgers”!!! Your Deee-troit hubby should KNOW that!!!!

  2. gg Says:

    The Marine Corps Builds Men.

    Late 60’s. That Marine sign was in front of the military recruiting office in Royal Oak – for awhile.

    Someone spray painted the swastika on the sign (consider the times – Don Lobsinger – Congressman Broomfield – Vietnam).
    The sign ended up in alley and a young kid carried it home.

    The sign has been in my shed since my parents moved out of Royal Oak in the 80’s.

    Note: Don Lobsingere was an flamboyant anti communist activist and made the Detroit paper a few times for such things as giving Sen. Ted Kennedy a life preserver for his car, and what not. I remember seeing him fight with anit-war protesters in front of Congressman Broomfield’s office which was not far from where the Marine Corps sign was found.