Stairs

With both hands holding the pry bar, I raised it to head-height, then drove the straight end into the joint of the stair railing with a solid thunk.  The wood separated slightly from the post to which it was attached, so I took the curved end of the bar and pounded it into the newly-opened crack with my right hand.  Lifting the lever with both hands, I separated the railing from the post completely and the wooden structure fell to the ground some two feet below with a satisfying thud.

“That was cool.  I didn’t even hurt myself,” I said aloud to no one but my dog.

I’m what one could graciously call a slow starter when it comes to projects.  One less gracious would call me a procrastinator, and with no grace at all the question would be, “Why don’t you just get started?” 

My favorite explanation–though it’s not an excuse–for someone like me is that I’m a perfectionist who’s reluctant (read: afraid) to get started because of the commitment to something that might not turn out as I want it to.

Something, in this case, like a set of stairs off of our back porch that needs to be rebuilt.  If I didn’t take them down soon, nature would do so through the even-slower process of decomposition.  That’s less than ideal.

So, this was the day and I knew I’d have to jump in.  I don’t have the materials yet to rebuild the stairs, but the first step was to take the railings off the old ones, so I decided to just go for it.

I opted to eschew power tools since there were only two cuts to be made.  Standing in my woodshop, I grabbed a hand saw designed for firewood, decided it would do, and walked out to the back porch.  With a lot less effort than dragging out a power saw, I cut the lower supports of the railings off at ground level.

With the lower supports cut, I used the pry bar to remove the structures from the posts at their upper ends.  Piece of cake.  One trip with the wheelbarrow to take everything out to the street for pickup, and step one was done in less than 30 minutes.

With the railings gone, the project is a lot harder to put off, and I don’t see it being long before I can check it off the list.

Oh, yeah…the list.  This is my summer to knock it out, I can feel it!

 

6 thoughts on “Stairs

  1. You sound so much like my husband. He is such a perfectionist that only he can do the job, but he takes forever to get around to it. And he studies and studies before getting started. I’m glad you conquered your procrastination (fear) and got the first step accomplished. It should just build itself now, right?

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    1. “…studies and studies before getting started.” Yes! That’s an issue with me, too! About the stairs: I checked a few minutes ago, and they apparently haven’t built themselves. I wish!

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  2. My mom always says that getting started is most of the battle. I, too, struggle to get started with projects, though I’m almost always glad when I do. I used to think it was because I am a perfectionist or because I’m a procrastinator, but then I learned more about executive functioning so now I blame it on low task initiation energy!

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    1. “Low task initiation energy.” Hmm. I like that. Sometimes it’s so easy, but other times it’s so hard to just get moving. I was looking through some stuff the other day and found a few blank notebooks. I can’t be sure, but it wouldn’t surprise me if I never wrote in them because I didn’t want to mess them up!

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  3. Go for it! It sounds as if you are revved up to get things done! Our list is made each season and my husband is great at getting things done. But…..he usually leaves a little bit of a project unfinished and that drives me nuts! But, eventually, they do get taken care of. He sided our house in 2018 and left an area around the utility box unfinished….until this week! It is done! Just keep plugging away at it, you’ll get it done. And, perfection? – I’d love to be able to give some advice on that – but I have a problem with it as well. Take care, Tim!

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