I’m not what you would call a typical handyman. Not because I’m completely useless or anything, but because I can’t stand doing handyman type things.
I CAN fix stuff, I CAN build stuff, I just don’t really want to.
Courtney and I once spent about a month pooping in the dark because I couldn’t bring myself to change the blown light bulb in the toilet.
So when it comes time to build furniture, I avoid it harder than girls use to avoid me when I was drunk at HQ trying to dance.
But now that there is a child on the way, I need to suck it up and start doing these type of things. I need to be the guy who picks up the dog shit rather than just going over it with the lawn mower. I need to be the guy who takes the 50 empty coffee cups from the car and proudly places them in the bin. I need to be the guy who builds furniture, even though I’d rather leave it in the box for the next six months.
And so, I present to you, Nathan’s step by step guide to build furniture for lazy assholes.
(That’s not me. I recently discovered stock photos. This guy looks like he knows how to build stuff, so i thought it would fit well)
STEP 1: opening the box.
(“Yea hi… i think I bought a faulty product… yea I can’t get it out of the box…hello?)
The first step is always the hardest. This saying is especially true when it comes to putting together flat packed furniture. I understand that company’s don’t want their boxes falling apart during shipping and transportation. But my god.
Staples that were forged in the fires of Mordor, glue made out of superman’s jizz, and enough tape to patch up the holes in the titanic… in its current state.
You will definitely need a pair of scissors or a good sharp knife for this stage. But be sure to keep your cool while holding these utensils.
Courtney actually tried to take the knife away from me. When I asked her why, she replied “I’m not sure if I feel comfortable being in the same room as you with a knife and IKEA furniture”
Eventually you will give up on trying to open the box, and just end up ripping it to smithereens with your bare hands.
STEP 2: reading the plans.
(“Nathan! You are building it upside down” “No Courtney, you are reading the plans upside down.” Actual quote)
The plans for these things aren’t really that hard to understand. Usually it’s just a bunch of pictures that show you exactly what you have to do.
The frustration comes when there are two pieces that look exactly the same. The only difference is a microscopic hole in the corner of one of them that you done notice. So you keep putting the pieces together, thinking you are doing a great job. Then ten pages later it tells you to screw something into that little hole on the inside. The same hole that is on the outside of what you made.
you have two choices.
1. You can take it all apart and start again.
Always read then plans carefully. And pay attention to any insignificant looking holes you come across.
STEP 3: keep things organised.
(“WHERE THE FUCK ARE ALL THE SMALL SCREWS!”)
You will be provided with a bag or two full or screws, pieces of wood, little tools and metal thingy’s.
LEAVE EVERYTHING YOU AREN’T USING AT THE TIME IN THE BAG.
Don’t be like me and place screws in your pocket, or wander out to the kitchen to get a drink and leave a tool next to the fridge.
There’s nothing worse than seeing the light at the end of this whole shitty experience, only to realise you are missing one god damn STUPID FUCKING PIECE OF SHIT SCREWHIOGFFFHJKJHGGGAAAAAAAAAARGHHHHHHHHHHH!!!!!
Which brings us to the next step
STEP 4: Take regular breaks.
(An actual picture of me on my 754th smoko)
This is a very important step if you value your relationships and your mental health. You can try and smash it all out in one sitting, but the toll it will take can be considerable.
Reward yourself after every five minutes of solid work with a coffee break, or a smoko, or watch a movie or something. Remember, slow and steady wins the race. But there isn’t even anybody else competing against you this time. So you can take as long as you fucking want.
As long as you are capable of shutting out the inevitable comments like “Nathan you have had 5 breaks in the last half hour” and “I really don’t want to be sitting here all night, can we please just finish this!” Then this is the best way to go.
STEP 5: leave it overnight.
(“Fuck this shit”)
This is basically just an extension of step 4. It is very important because fuck this shit, future Nathan’s problem now.
STEP 6: drag yourself back in and get it done
(“Please kill me…”)
Present Nathan doesn’t much like past Nathan. See, past Nathan is always trying to palm things off onto future Nathan. But future Nathan never seems to show up. So present Nathan always gets stuck having the do all the bullshit that past Nathan didn’t want to do.
You are so close to finishing. The home stretch. Just suck it up and get it done. Don’t even think about it. Just do it.
Once you are finished you will be a little proud of yourself. Sure the doors are slightly crooked and it wobbles a fair bit when you touch it. But who cares! You made that. Give yourself a big pat on the back and then never, ever build anything again.
Until next time you go to IKEA with the wife and she sees something that might look nice in the living room…
STEP 7: Ride off into the sunset in ya undies with a bottle of wine.