In addition to a Van Gogh-esque yard (didn't you all know Vincent spent some time in the western suburbs of Chicago), we have a basement. My father used the basement as a staging area when he built the house, and also as an office, so the basement - in addition to a fireplace and pretty slate floors - has three workbenches, lots of lumber scraps, snowdrifts of sawdust and stacks of half-used legal tablets on which he wrote.
Our vision of the basement, with a nice sewing area set up for me, and pantry shelving and area rugs and the TV, is a long ways off. To that end, though, we vowed to spend some time working on cleaning the basement out every day until we're done.
Last night, we decided to clean off one of the workbenches. We carried all the wood back to the laundry room and stacked it neatly there on another workbench I had already moved.
Then the Fool suggested we clean up the biggest pile of sawdust and call it a night.
"We have a shop vac," I said. "I'll get it."
We plugged it in and turned it on. It made a hellacious noise ... yet did almost nothing to suck up sawdust.
I can suck up sawdust faster with a straw.
We turned it off.
The Fool went upstairs to find earplugs for us.
We looked in the cannister, which was empty.
I turned the hose over. Sawdust poured onto the floor.
The Fool disconnected the hose.
"Do you have tweezers?" he asked.
I found a pair on the floor. He fished around for a moment.
"How about a long pointy poker thing?"
I found a stick. We shoved it through the hose.
Not long enough.
I found a longer stick. Using the makeshift hose snake, we forced out a plug of dust and grot and an old dryer sheet.
We stuffed earplugs in our ears, hooked up the hose and threw the switch.
Suckage! Mighty suckage!
And then a cloud of dust filled the air and the Fool began coughing and waving his hands, grabbing for the switch, as the sawdust began shooting out of a hole on top of the vacuum cleaner.
"Where's the damn dustpan?" he said.
Then ... "Wait, is this blogworthy?"
"I think so," I said.
In other news: Spoot and Mab and Angus are adapting well. Angus raced around the house last night and played Slay The Catnip Mouse on top of us while we slept, prompting his subsequent eviction from the bedroom for general beastliness. This morning, he snuggled lovingly with me while I dozed ... and started chewing on my left forearm. Sigh.
The Fool says, "I think he likes you better."
I say, "For what? A snack?"