Restoring My Faith

By A.J. Llewellyn


I hired a friend to restore a fallen-down closet two weeks ago and the results have been a close disaster. I am nowhere near getting this thing finished and I am in despair it will ever get done. My friends and loved ones keep asking, “Is it done?” and I am trying my best not to have a meltdown.
The problem is I’ve never spent so much money before and I know how many books I had to sell to save the money to do this project. Not that I had a choice, since the closet fell apart. The top shelf came down, the clothes pole fell…I just wanted those things fixed, then the closet doors came of their rungs. Mind you, they are forty years old (as old as me!) so they were bound to start falling apart (like me!).


I got a couple of estimates and I try not to think how much better those contractors might have been..especially the guy who came up with the idea of creating extra shelf space. I gave the work instead to a dear friend who needed the work.


Yep, my contractor is a close friend…or, at least I thought so. Now I feel taken advantage of. I feel like Murphy Brown with Eldin, the house painter who wouldn’t go away. Except I suspect Eldin smelled a little better.
I think this has been a good lesson in something…not sure what. I know it’s interfered with my productivity and probably ruined a 20-year friendship. Yeah, yeah, friends and money don’t mix they say, but I happen to have great working relationships with friends who are my co-writers, etc.
They don’t however, hang out in my bedroom taking ten years to add a few shelves and a pole to a closet. Nor do they spend mysterious amounts of time doing God-knows-what in the bathroom.
Actually, my dad reminded me on the phone last night of an old Australian movie called, The Plumber. Ivar Kants, a wonderful, underused Aussie actor plays a malevolent plumber who arrives to work on a woman’s bathroom, then ruins her home. And her life.
“Be nice,” my father warned.
I will…but my faith in this experience has started to be restored. I’m coming up with my own ideas for revenge. On paper that is. I can kill the guy and not get arrested for it. I can kill him…in a closet!!
How about you? Any of you had experiences bad enough you get revenge via fiction?
Aloha oe,

5 Responses to “Restoring My Faith”

  1. “The Plumber” was the scariest movie I have ever seen. It haunted me for days and then later it happened to me. A New Jersey plumber who charged by the hour.He spent the whole time smoking and calling my imported faucet a “Kung Foo” fixture. I felt the movie coming to life and when he left after EIGHT!!!!!!! hours for one faucet I wanted to nail the door shut! I’m still traumatized.

    Good Luck!

  2. Hi Linda, thanks for the comment. That WAS a scary movie, wasn’t it? This contractor has a temper, I can tell. He left at five on Friday and finally showed up at 2.30 today (Monday). He’s sitting in my bedroom chatting on his cell phone. I am starting to wonder what the problem is…he doesn’t want to put the pole up so I can hang my clothes…LOL…it is really weird. Sorry to hear about your experience. Did your contractor finish the job??

  3. That was a one time job, thank heaven. I later found a wonderful contractor from Argentina… Gorge. He was the best! and very easy on the eyes. I’m about to start a huge back garden redo in Seattle. If my new contractor, Doug, is half as good at his job as Gorge was , I’m Jake.

    Good Luck!I hope it is just that your guy is bad at his job…. please don’t take any chances if you think he might be dangerous. Invite a friend over until this is resolved. A witness is usually a calming influence.

    All the best,


  4. Hi Linda, loving this exchange here! He arrived at three today and had a burst of activity. He’s gone quiet which means he could be napping…lol. He did that last week. I am still laughing about your “Kung Fu Fixtures” Hope Doug turns out great. My contrator is really moody and just plain lazy…:)

  5. Well A.J.——- at least you’re going to get a great story out of this. Can’t wait to read it. He’ll be sorry when he realizes that your pen is your sword.
    I’m sending all the positive “building” energy I can muster your way.
    All the best,


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