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  • Cara Van Leuven

Bound To Fail


Ideas are bound to fail. For example, when you added new siding to the walls of the addition and you were ready to paint…the original tan looked too “plasticy” and unauthentic. Then you and your boyfriend decided black would be cutting edge. You painted over the tan only to discover your addition looked as if it was covered in tarpaper. I have a knack for choosing beautiful paint samples at the hardware store. I’ve learned paint chip samples lie. They simply lie, and when that happens, go with a classic white.

With our third coat of paint over new siding in less than a year, Tom and I bled white over black. While he was on the ladder going after the shingles he asked that I open the attic window. We knew birds were upstairs, but falsely believed they were inhabiting a different part of the house snuggled out-of-reach. It was only when Tom was upstairs painting that he saw a rouge bird needing out.

With the caution of a tightrope walker, I opened the attic door. One bird looked horrified, and it horrified me, and I slammed the door behind me. When I mustered the courage to face my fears, I once again opened the attic door, but now multiple birds scurried throughout our attic where we store winter clothes, artwork and biker gear.

Once again, I slammed the door behind me and screamed for Tom. And there he was to the rescue. He opened the windows, but birds are dumb. That is not a stereotype. It’s true. Only two of a half dozen made it out. Some just gave up and stared at us. I don’t know what we’ll do. It took three times to figure out the right paint color; how many times will it take to get the damn birds out of the attic?

Thanks to my friend Patti, landscaping is taking off. The house was a rental for years with a stark feel inside and out.

He eats bark.


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