1:27 PM, Friday, November 8th, 2013:
All faith in hu"man"ity restored.
There's no really nice way to approach this topic but let's just say that the last few "men" I have had near me during construction projects were about as helpful erasers on #2 pencils. The first couple acted like it was just far too difficult and I was some superman and the last trying to desperately one-up every, single, moment with his superior knowledge when all that was needed was a hand not a mouth. Both extremes, both completely worthless and in the end I've just done it by myself. Which kinda sucks because I'm not superman... I just know it needs to get done and do it. Of course it's too much for one person to do... but I don't really have another choice so I just work twice as hard and twice as much. Ironically, I still end up completing stuff around the same time it would have taken if there were 2 or 3 of us, because there's just no down-time.
Then came the shared wall with my neighbors to the left. I'm sure in videos (especially 4-square) it was quite noticeable. A wall that was so poorly put together, not only were massive concrete bricks falling off - the entire wall sagged in the middle falling INTO the neighbor's yard. Super dangerous... and during construction stuff last year I talked to 'em. Yes, it was most likely 100% their wall... but I was happy to split everything with them to get it done. Last July they said at the end of the month...
...this end of the month went for over a year. The latest was that they would find someone to take away the old wall (that was 6 months ago) and I finally just couldn't take it anymore. So I just took off the pieces that could literally be picked up from the wall and started taking it down. 25 pieces like that. I figured that would get their attention and then they'd talk to me. And wouldn't you know it? Something about being scared of our dogs kind of "concerned" them. LMFAO.
Passive aggression wins!
I just said:  "Here's what I'm doin'. I'll make a temporary wall in the interim, but this needs to happen." They had a guy to translate (Armenian I believe) and I just asked if they could help get rid of the bricks afterwards. Gonna be a lot. 50 feet wide, 5 feet high... that's a lot. They understood, and since I was putting the bricks out front on BOTH of our properties... this was going to happen sooner rather than later. Luckily, they had some gate-type pieces that would act as a temporary wall so I woke up yesterday ready to get that done and start on the demo...
...that's when the "old man" came home. Now, I've watched this guy over the years. I watched him convert a carport into a guesthouse.... build a little patio. Dude knew his shit. And though he barely spoke any English (which reminded me of my Greek grandfather), there is a language of hardwork that I understand well. He got home, said "Ten Meenotes", and he started helpin' me. Fast. When it ocurred to me...
...he watched MY ASS build the whole freaking world in my back AND front yard. Brotha knew. He knew who he was dealing with. He was dealing with HIMSELF 25 years ago. So he decided to show ME a thing or two about hard work. 30 minutes later I went inside to grab some water and I laughed to Talya:  "This guy is gonna kill me..." and she said: "He's probably saying the same thing to his wife."
Which was exactly what was happening. I mean, we couldn't talk. So... it was all communicated with actions and hard work. Well, that and him systematically bringing out tools just a few inches bigger than mine...
Which put me in the unfamiliar position of having to rationalize in my head why my smaller tool worked just as good as his. I'll be honest, that doesn't feel good.
This lack of communication and years of watching each other work lead to us doing EASILY a good 8 hours of work in THREE HOURS. Until he finally said "Done work today? I'm 63."
I expected NO help, so of course we were done. How funny. Talya grabbed a little video...
That music by the way is from strange performance project by Sean Lennon. He recorded some tiny loops at 138 bpm and released them asking people to arrange, add to and put together. I missed the deadlines, but downloaded his zip of files. I randomly dragged a few samples into a timeline and that's just how they lined up. Sounded cool. Ahhh, The Journey.
So yeah, this wall will be done pretty quickly. It will be wood like the rest of GolfKon so that's cool... I realize I'm creating a yearly staining nightmare of epic proportions, but the good news since it never rains around here... sun damage is the only real concern. So this could look good for a looooong time which is very nice. ;-)