If you have read Grrrrrrr, you will remember that I concluded with the statement :-
“I’m back in business and things are looking up.
Or else, something really BAD is about to happen !!!”
Well today it did.
I woke up this morning convinced that the date was Friday the 16th of November. My calendar said it was the 16th ~ my mobile phone confirmed that it was the 16th.
I was happy with it being the 16th.
Yesterday, the 15th, I took delivery of some materials from Wessex Pictures, amongst which were the materials ordered for a customer’s watercolour painting. I duly stocked the remainder of the order and commenced with doing the decorative ink-lining to the window mount for the watercolour.
That done I put it to one side whilst the ink dried, cut the glass and by the end of the day was satisfied that, for this job, I merely needed to cut and assemble the frame, put the whole package together and notify the customer that his painting was ready to collect.
That was yesterday.
Today started off nicely as Friday the 16th.
Until about 10:00am.
I had sorted out the frame profile for the watercolour from yesterdays delivery. I had cut the mitres and glued and wedged one long and one short side together. This, I had placed upon the workbench, as I commenced gluing and wedging the second long and short side. It was at this point that Friday the 16th instantaneously turned into Friday 13th.
The first joined sides, quite inexplicably, toppled off the bench and onto the floor. Onto the rear of the corner.
When I say “quite inexplicably“, what I mean is; I was sure that I had placed the assembly on the workbench in such a manner that it would stay where I had put it. However, I was wrong. As vociferously as I blamed the piece for leaping off the bench, I had to admit that it was my fault. I tried streaming the bruised section back to life; and in all fairness it almost recovered, but not quite. I knew that the client would see it and object to it. And as I had ordered just two lengths; one for the job and one for stock, (It’s not a section I sell a lot of, so don’t keep a large stock of it.) I pulled the other length from my stock rack and proceeded to make another frame. I won’t tell you what happened to that one, sufficient to say that I made a mistake with the underpinner and I was less than pleased with the finished article.
Now I was faced with driving to Wessex Pictures (about a 50 miles round trip) to buy another length of framing section.
This I duly did. [I bought two. One for stock !]
And during the drive to Leamington, I persuaded myself that I was not incompetent, useless, a blithering idiot &/or incapable. All of which I had accused myself of being for the first quarter of an hour following the ‘quite inexplicable‘ fall and the subsequent ‘mistake‘. I further reasoned with myself that the day had turned sour, not due to one of my ‘bad’ days, which I occasionally suffer as a result of the strokes, when co-ordination is difficult.
(I was driving to Leamington OK)
It is so easy to look for, and find, something or someone else to blame, isn’t it?
The events of the day were simply due to the fact that I had been careless.
Nothing more. Nothing less.
I returned from Leamington and made the frame.
The next step is to prepare the package ~ clean the inside surface of the glass ~ ensure that the artwork is spotlessly free of particles of dust, fibres, specks of foreign matter; then very carefully assemble the package ~ watercolour – glass – frame – tags to hold it in place ~ and turned it over to check that everything is still as pristine as just a moment ago.
Yes. You’ve guessed it. Flumbs. # Five of the little monsters.
So take it all apart again. And each and every one of them has disappeared.
Re-clean and re-assemble; hoping that you’ve got them all.
Sure enough. All gone. Not a flumb in sight anywhere.
Finish tagging the back of the frame. Place the barrier board and tag that. Tape the rear of the frame to prevent the ingress of any further foreign matter for the next 40 years.
# see Glossary of Terms under the About TAA tab
Now from experience, I always turn the frame over again and check it for a second time at this point before fitting the final pieces to the rear of the frame.
I smugly turned it over. And there it was. In the top right hand corner.
So small it almost couldn’t be seen.
So small it could easily be missed.
But I knew that the client would spot it. Immediately. In exactly the same way that he would spot a flashing blue light. He’s not a vindictive man. He is simply, the customer.
And that’s what customers do.
So once more, the entire package was dis-assembled.
And once more there was no sign of the offending speck of ‘whatever-it-was’.
By this time I was convinced that this was not just Friday the 13th, but this was a decade’s worth of Fridays’ the 13th, all rolled into today.
I was almost frightened to re-assemble it.
But I did.
And it looks fine to me. I finished the frame – hangings, labels, wire, buffers etc. And it still looks fine.
It’s ready for the client to collect.
But I am so nervous.
I will have dreams tonight of the frame falling to the floor, breaking the glass, denting the frame and being infested by flumbs like the locusts of biblical proportions.
I really do hope that tomorrow will be Saturday the 17th of November.
That everything will have returned to normal; and that the customer will be pleased with his picture.
Watch this space
Saturday 17th November
I did wake once during the night, but immediately returned to sleep and can’t for the life of me remember what I dreamed about; if I dreamed at all.
My client has been to collect his watercolour and has expressed himself pleased with it.
My wife has asked for a small standing frame to be made for her brother for Christmas.
And I have done that, without a problem.
It would appear that life, as I know it (most of the time) has returned.
What a relief !!
But I still shudder when I think of yesterday