The name's Bullet.
This sorry tale began back in late July, one bright sunny morning with the weekend stretched out before me like a ..... big ..... two day, stretched out thing. There was only one thing for it; decorate the stairs.
It wasn't an easy decision. I knew I had my work cut out. But it had to be done.
I finished my drink in one hit; the tea had gone cold but it wasn't the first drink I'd ever had that had been served below 30 degrees, trust me. I waited for the sugar to hit, savoured the moment, then rounded up the boys; a hammer, large screwdriver, filler, sander and anyone else that fancied coming along for the ride.
It felt good, being together again. It had been a long time. Too long, in fact. We never spoke much. We knew, we all knew, the job would be a dirty one.
I went first, holding nothing back. I stripped our 'hit' of all dignity, left 'em bare, shivering, pleading for something, anything, to wrap around 'em, to keep out the cold.
Not a chance buster. You been wearing them manky blue clothes for too long now. Time to open up, time to welcome the change, time for something new.
Once I stopped to take a breather, the enormity of the task hit home.
It had been a while since tackling anything this size. I looked from the hit, to the "boys", to my already calloused hands. Had I bitten off more than I could chew?
I called to the broad in the kitchen, told her to fix me another drink. It was gonna be a tough day.
Why do I have to deal with this kinda vermin? The lowest of the low, the dregs, no rung or step is lower. The lowest one I encountered that day was in a bad way before I'd even gotten stuck in. Full of holes, split in two from one side, clean across to the other. It broke my heart doing what I did!
But do it I had to do and do it I did.
Man, I filled and rubbed, filled and rubbed, filled and rubbed for all I was worth and finally, after a coupla hours working 'em over hard, they saw the light. They started to come good, knew I meant business and stopped wasting my time.
I was winning. They finally agreed to wanting some protection.
Protection is my business. They were finally speaking my language.
I got stuck in with a decent camouflage and it suited them, good and proper.
The bottom one was going to be trickier though. This baby needed a little more TLC. I flashed a chisel or two and wasted no more than three car journeys to collect the right "piece" (of wood) for the job.
"That's it", I whispered, as I gently knocked the sharp edges off. "No need to fight. It's so much easier when you don't fight!"
Now, I don't want you nice people thinking this was all in the space of one lousy weekend. No siree, this job had (so far) been spread out over several weeks. I'm making it sound easy but no such luck. I was forced to re-visit the hit five, six, maybe seven times over the course of a couple of months.
They'd hung it out this long and they sure as heck weren't going without a fight.
But I did it, I triumphed! I'd stripped them, filled them, screwed them, planed them, sanded them, caulked them, primed them, undercoated them, top coated them (take a breath) and finally, sat down to admire them.
They still needed .... something.
Yep. Some new carpet.
For now, my work was done. Time to hand the job back to the guy paying the bill. I just know him as, Mr DOAB. I think the "B" stands for bike, but who cares.
So you can imagine how upset Mr DOAB was (is 'upset' a strong enough word?), when the lovely carpet fitter called him out to "have a look" at what had happened on "one or two" of the stairs.
Every step was damaged to this amount, at least.
Unfortunately, a couple of the stairs looked more like this;
I'm pretty sure the boss never actually fainted, but he sure came over pretty green.
Two months of (genuinely) hard work undone in the space of two hours. Naturally, he now has the argument of some sort of compensation on his hands.
But that is later.
He need to lie down, clear his mind, take it easy.
That's where I come in.
No job too small.
Boys? Saddle up. We got a job to do. Gotta see a man about some stairs.