Last Word: Home Improvement

My husband likes to say that we have less square footage in our 14-year-old house than we did when we first moved in.

He claims that because I’ve painted every single room so many times, there’s less measurable wall space as a result.

I wish I could say the same of him, but it would mean that he’d applied a coat of paint to anything in our house at all, which, to date, has yet to happen.

It’s probably because he’s not inspired like I am.

When I’m not glued to the Food Network, I’m tuned into HGTV around the clock.

From bargain beach hunts in Cozumel (What? Under $100,000? Amazing!) to loving or listing it (Sorry, David, but I’m totally going to love it), I’ll watch anything.

They could have a show on how to build a log cabin using dish soap and empty toilet paper rolls, and I’d be riveted.

More importantly, after it was over, I’d attempt it.

This frequently happens after any episode of “Fixer Upper.”

All hopped up after watching Chip and Joanna transform a discarded shoebox into a lavish mansion, I announce to anyone who’ll listen that I, too, have decided to undertake a massive renovation project.

I imagine myself as a master decorator, capable of performing miracles with throw pillows and giant metal letters. I contemplate taking down load-bearing walls for a walk-in pantry and open-concept living room.

It doesn’t take long, however, for me to remember that I have none of the required skills and settle for ordering a new duvet cover from Amazon instead.

Once after watching some furniture rehab show, I decided to paint the kitchen table to give it “a fresh, new look!”

Having never refinished anything in my life, I bought a can of paint and was preparing to go at it when my husband walked in and asked if I planned to sand it first.

What did he know?

And who did he think he was barging in on my project with his superior, mansplaining, Are-You-Going-to-Sand-it-First attitude?

After all, he wasn’t the one attempting a complete makeover (Uh, hello, on a budget) after watching a 30-minute show.

No, I said. I didn’t need to sand it. I’d purchased expensive paint, which meant I didn’t have to.

Worried that we might be eating Kraft Mac & Cheese on TV trays for the foreseeable future, he hovered a few minutes longer, trying to go over the physics of covering shellac with a water-based paint.

Fuming, I sent him away. I’d show him.

And I did.

When I was finished, our new forest green kitchen table looked amazing.

For at least 36 hours.

Until, in giant flakes, the paint began peeling off in a desperate jail break to escape the wood.

Sanding it down wasn’t nearly as painful as acknowledging that I might have been wrong, an extremely sensitive subject under any circumstance.

As much as I like HGTV, I sometimes find myself annoyed watching it.

If there’s anyone left in the continental United States, and most of Canada, who doesn’t want a white kitchen, stainless appliances and subway-tile backsplash, I’ve yet to see it.

They’re the same people who put on an addition to make room for a center island large enough to seat a high school marching band.

Apparently it’s because they need more space to “entertain.” I like entertaining too, but mostly when it happens at someone else’s house.

Besides, if I was going to put an addition on the house, it wouldn’t be to accommodate more people.

It’d be a safe room where I could lock them out in order to watch “A Star Is Born” without being interrupted to confirm there are clean towels in the dryer.

Fortunately, while I can’t paint furniture, I can paint walls.

Emulating my favorite shows, I like to go “bold” and “stylish,” attempting new colors and accent walls, like the time I painted our kitchen neon red to create “an inviting Italian Trattoria” atmosphere.

Instead, the tawdry color made it feel like a Las Vegas nightclub, repelling anyone entering the kitchen for something other than a cover band performing “Who Let The Dogs Out.”

It doesn’t matter, because according to HGTV, wallpaper is now all the rage.

Looks like I’d better get started.

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