Concrete Evidence

before sort of


I’d like to meet the person who designed and built our house.  I’d reach out my right hand to shake it, pull them in close and then poke them in the eyes with my left hand, asking them, “What the hell were you thinking?” They would then look at me and say, “What sa matta you?”  And then I’d say “Don’t answer a question with a question you fuck!”  augh!

 Sweet and Husband and I have done a tremendous amount of work on this house in the 6 years that we’ve lived here.  So far we’ve been able to surmise that there was ZERO insulation to be accounted for. Well that’s not entirley true, there has always been insulation in the attic. But now there is insulation on the heating vents and in all the wall that we’ve exposed to studs.  The electrical has been so screwed up to the point that if Sweet Husband is attempting any electrical switcheroo I DEMAND that the whole panel be shut down.  To many times has a circuit breaker been turned off, only to find out the hard way that there is still juice running.  It’s purely a selfish reason that I have him turn off the power completely, I tell him he is no good to me dead.  So to prevent sparks, swearing and broken hearts, off goes the power.

From what we can gather from neighbors that have lived here multiple decades, the dude that built this house was the local president of the concrete finishers union.  That explains a lot of concrete weirdness.  One for example, is our oddly shaped and textured concrete patio at the west end of the house.  The best reasoning we can come up with is, we think that each time there was left over concrete from a job somewhere in the greater Puget Sound area he had them bring it here to expand the patio. Nice. 

Not from personal experience mind you, but I hear that the minuscule crawl space beneath our house has a concrete floor.  Also from what I hear and seen from the evidence of shredded clothing and various scratched appendages, the floor is not smooth, but was raked while the concrete was wet to give it  a miniature stalagmite sort of effect. 

At the west end of the patio, at one time, there was a basketball hoop.  We do not play basketball so we attempted to take the hoop and pole down.  The backboard was easy, loosen a couple of screws, some other hanging thingys and viola, it’s gone.  Upon trying to take down the pole Sweet Husband discovers this will be a much larger task, it’s completely full of, yep you guessed it, concrete.  That magnificent pole has since been encased in wood and is one of the pole that holds up the trellis for the wisteria. 

can you decide which pole it is?



At the same end of the house there was a set of 2 concrete step that were at the base of a concrete wall.  These steps lead to nowhere, only up, only down. Alot of conversation has gone on trying to speculating the reason for the stairs.  The best conclusion is Jimmy Hoffa, enough said.   This eyesore has since become a lovely fountain, after we hauled in a shitload of boulders, dirt and plants .  No really, here’s a before and after picture.  The fence is gone, we planted bamboo and we have a Buddha head, even the chairs were changed. But look, same crappy concrete blocks that were the going concern in the 50’s.  We’re trying our best to cover them up.



 We did not want a wood stove in a particular room (which shall be referred to as the WEST WING from here on out) so after a short visit on Craig’s list, the wood stove found a new and loving home.  We (as in Sweet Husband) built this awesome wood built-in to house the TV and all that junk, but that was 6 years ago.  Now we want this room to be just a room with out any built-ins to garner better access to the whole room.  And since we were remodeling the bathroom and taking out the door from said bathroom to the West Wing, let’s remodel that room too.  So we are.  Yesterday in our endeavors to change EVERYTHING about this house I took out the old platform that once held a wood stove.   Guess what, it wasn’t solid concrete like I’d feared, but I must have carried out 50 buckets of dirt and rubble.  There were some sizable chunks of concrete that I get to move today, but it wasn’t nearly as awful as It could have been.   We are recycling everything so all is not lost. Did I mention that it was 90 degrees yesterday? 



What was Sweet Husband doing while I was cleaning the house with a shovel?  Why he was putting the finishing touches on the  plumbing, that’s what.  He’s very awesome and WAY more valuable to me alive, plumbing skills or not.

looks like a how-to photo op

looks like a how-to photo op

9 thoughts on “Concrete Evidence

  1. I comend your fortitude and understand a little of the scale of operations you have undertaken. Rich says “mafie bosses are not known for their education, especially in the construction field. Cement galoshes, maybe.” He wants to know if this was, by any chance, the Seattle version of the Winchester Mansion? (as in stairway to nowhere) You sure the house builders’ name wasn’t John Wayne Gacey? Just kidding, don’t want to give you nightmares.

  2. So what if you have a secret basement under the house? Get that ground radar out and start looking! Oo oo underground pool!!!

  3. Aha! You’ve got new digs! Whatsamatta? You no like blogspot anymore? We-sa ain’t-a good enough for you? :laughs hysterically at her terrible accent of east coast italspeak while husband rolls his eyeballs:

    All I can say is that your place must have been one nice piece of property at the right price for you to have signed over for it. It doesn’t look all that terrible in the photos, but I sure hope as hell that you don’t find some dead body buried in cement somewhere!

  4. Wow! Your remodels look great but were (are) a whole lot of work. And if you hadn’t said anything about the pole I don’t think I would have noticed. To it looks like it belongs there.

    How happy will you be when the dust settles and you are done? (But are we ever really donw with remodels?)

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