Thursday, May 05, 2005

Garbage Bags and Toilet Paper

The Coxwell bus. The last leg of transport from work to home (and my pillow).

We finally delivered the work we were working on yesterday night at 7pm. Sorry about all the mystery but I signed a non-disclosure form regarding the thing I was working on. So I can't identify it until it's released. It's been about six weeks since the project started and now that it's done I've noticed the apartment needs a lot of cleaning. That and I'm exhausted.

Piles of clothing seem to be everywhere, clean and not so clean. Mixed in are batteries, camera gear, chemistry glass ware (test tubes and beakers) and the odd photo magazine (that I bought over the last few weeks and "misplaced") or newspaper. The kitchen has dishes overflowing and a stink coming from somewhere. Oh yeah, the food rotting in the make shift garbage bag next to my recycling box. I kept missing the pick up day for the last few weeks. My apartment has turned into a wreak over the last few weeks so I decided today I would do something about it.

But not right away. I lazily woke up at around 10am, got up and did a bunch of banking and errands first. Then I got side tracked at a gallery downtown. A city wide photo exhibition is happening this month called "Contact". All over Toronto various venues showcase photography from a wide range of photographers. The gallery that caught my attention a few days (or was it a day) ago was one on King and Bathurst. Thanks to the countless hours at work, the days have all melted into one another. Because I was wandering around town not working I'd swear it was the weekend.

The gallery showcased the photos of a New Yorker, Joel Mayerowitz, who during the post 911 event clean up went around ground zero and took pictures despite being told by police officers that it was a restricted crime scene. A large print on the wall with text told his story of the picture taking and the motivation behind it. He claimed that there should be historical documents for the city of New York and he set out and did it.

The photos were of the smashed twin towers, all the rubble, and the workers that were attempting to clean up and rescue. The sense of scale and the enormous task of sifting and clearing is abundantly clear in his work. You could even make out the detail of the various worker's faces. The faces were about a quarter of the size of your nail on your pinky finger. The pictures were blown up to the size of a transit map. I was impressed. Unfortunetly there was a large push to print the photos using HP printers. This diluted the exhibit to a certain extent but I managed to ignore most of the HP ad campaign.

Finally I managed to make my way back home and did a small run to the grocery store, where I restocked on the garbage bags and toilet paper. I went out a third time to pick up a couple of band clamps. A band clamp, to those of you that don't know, is like a belt that can be tightened with a ratchet device of some kind. I decided to fix my chair. I bought some wood glue and realized I'd need something to hold it together while it dried. One would think Home Hardware or even Canadian Tire would carry something like this. The Home Hardware guys didn't know what I was talking about and tried selling me a vice grip. The sales guy did a pretty bad job. The vice grip, that was on sale, broke while he was demonstrating it to me. I walked away as he tried to reassemble it.

Next I went to Canadian Tire (where they sell more than tires). Although the sales staff gave me the chicken look they did direct me to the right section of the store where I eventually found them. They had two types, both by the same company. One was $20, the other single hand band clamp was $40. I felt that both were too expensive for tools that were made of plastic. If you're going to buy hardware it should be made of metal or at least not feel like it's made from the same plastic that they make pumpkin pails out of for carrying Halloween candy. It's the kind of plastic that smashes into tiny pieces if dropped from waist level. The same kind of plastic that they make Lomo cameras out of. Cheap. Brittle. Crap.

Not getting a band clamp I ended up getting bowls. Yes, red plastic bowls. Four of them. They, unlike the cheapo band clamps, were made of heavy duty plastic. If melted down you might be able to make a bowling ball. The reason I bought them, aside from their durability is that they have rounded bottoms. I have other bowls that have bottoms with a crease in them. I've had the blue flat bottomed bowls for months, maybe years, and it's always bugged me when I eat ice cream and when I clean them.

To answer the question posted in the past blog about work. I was called later on to be informed that I will not be hired by the second party involved. This means I have joined the ranks of the unemployed yet again.


Wade Marshall said...

One time, in band clamp....

Cupcake said...

RE: work situation

That man is a huge coward. Looking at you means facing the truth and he can't do it.

Cupcake said...

Re: work situation
William says it "was bullshit".

Anonymous said...

Hey, Derek.... It's Laer, trying out this whole 'comment on a blog entry' thing.
I had a similar situation with the neglected home... and now that the project is over (at least for now), I too spent the day cleaning, organizing and restocking... as well as re-aquainting myself with sleeping and being relaxed.
One more month, and I'll be FREE!
[Dramatic orchestral blast with outstretched arms pose....]

uncaringbear said...

Do you live around Coxwell now? I have somewhat fond memories of that part of town. In regards to the unhelpful store employees, give them a break - the poor bastards probably earn minimum wage and who could know about every bloody item in a hardware store? People have the expectation that service should come with a smile, but when we force people to earn a pittance so that we can all pay less for that cool gadget, how would you feel? Thos of us who earn (or have the opportunity to earn) a non-subsistance wage shouldn't forget what it was like on the other end of the scale.