Thursday, December 2, 2010
The Birth of the Renozilla
"It's a disaster!"
Renovations are considered one of life's most stressful events. Apparently it's up there with divorce and financial worries. Which is kind of ironic; after all, renovations cause financial worries, and all the arguments over both of those could easily lead to not wanting to live in the newly improved home any longer. Not as a couple, anyway.
But I think renovations are better compared with a wedding.
Like a wedding, a renovation is a bit of a self-indulgent source of stress. The old 'poor me' request for sympathy garners a response of 'Poor you? Dressing up in pretty clothes and marrying the person you love?' Or, in this situation, 'Poor you? Choosing to make your house really great?'
I've had a lot of comments about how relaxed I am about the whole renovation, but the truth is I just don't think it warrants wasting anyone's sympathy on.
No, I'm not a sympathy seeker. But I'm afraid I may be suffering from another affliction.
Like the bride-to-be planning a wedding and wanting everything right (AKA 'Bridezilla'), a renovator looks carefully over every detail and demands perfection (AKA 'Renozilla').
I may have some symptoms of this syndrome.
Case in point number one: Steve and I were walking through the extension after the electricians had been. We were switching lights on, as excited as though our extension was the first building to see electricity (wow - look how the room just lights up, at the flick of a switch! Ooh! Aah!). Then we came to the smallest room in the house. Steve flicked on the switch and a light came on. He began the oohing and aahing and turned to face me. I was silent. Hands on hips, lips pursed. And I said this: 'What is that light doing in here? It's wrong. It's all wrong.'
Case in point number two: I, um, had a big argument with the guy in the tile shop. I wanted two shades of a sandstone tile, and they only had one. (Well, they had two on display, but the samples given to me both looked the same and the reason given was 'a different batch' or some such rubbish. Anyway.) In my harried state, I deemed it vital that we have two samples of a sandstone tile, and so I entered into a loud argument about it. I'm not proud of this fact.
Case in point number three: The cupboard and wardrobe configurations have had me in an absolute tizz. Where should they go? How many shelves? What about the balance between shelves and hanging space? This usually transcends into me demanding (to Steve, not the builders) why I have to decide this right this second, and that I just don't care anyway. It's a disaster! (Drama queen, anyone?)
Case in point number... Actually, no, I think I'll just leave it there. I don't want to completely damage my reputation, do I now?
Suffice to say, the destruction of every conversation to the level of argumentativeness, and the demands of a renovator are all just, well, ridiculous.
I mean, does it really matter if we have a normal light in the loo instead of a downlight? Will having five shelves in the wardrobe instead of six actually be life altering? Will we even notice if the tiles in the ensuite are a slightly lighter shade of sandstone?
What effect will any of this actually have on our lives?
Sure, we want things to be right, but it can all go too far. Feel free to use me as an example of 'what not to do'.
Just like planning a wedding, where the napkins not matching the bridesmaids' dresses is the biggest horror imaginable (and FYI, I wasn't a Bridezilla!), renovating can bring out the worst in people. I can use the plural here, can't I? Surely it isn't just me?
And all you want is for the 'happily ever after' to start and the monster to go back where it belongs.
Posted at 11:06 AM