Last night I decided that I needed to do something about my bathroom floor. Immediately. Because it’s been 10 months since my bathroom died and left a giant hole in my bathroom floor. Flash forward to last night : I went to amazon.com and lowes.com and then pintrest. By about 1am I had decided that I would do a faux leather floor using the paper bag technique AND do a penny border…I woke up this morning, rolled out of bed with purpose and drove to Lowes. After spending an hour debating the pros and cons of peel and stick vs. fake wood snap together, outloud, to myself, I went with snap together fake wood. Just one box so I could see what it would look like and if I would like it. I knew I wasn’t going to like it. I wanted tile. But I had talked myself out of tile because I have very low self esteem and exceptionally bad handyman karma.
As I was driving home I had a session with myself about why I felt like I didn’t deserve tile. I can do that because I have a degree in psychology. That’s about all I can do with my degree so I do it often. Makes me feel better about not defaulting on my student loans.Why did I think I wasn’t capable of installing a tile floor? I am 42 years old and I have accomplished more than I ever knew I was capable of. Like cleaning various smelly, runny, moldy and dead things from numerous places in my home and installing a screen door. Granted, the screen door only lasted about a month until it fell off…but what a lovely month it was…I have wanted to tile my bathroom floor since I moved into this house 9 years ago. Ya know what? I deserve tile. Not only that, tile will be much easier to work with. Because I am going to get the small tiles that are held together with webbing which I do not need a tile saw to cut. Decision making skills are sort of my super power.
Since I was half way to the other Lowes, I went there and bought 3 boxes of tile, grout, and mastif (it’s not mastif but that’s the only word I can think of at the moment…) and I drove home. Now, I know that I am supposed to start in the middle of the room and work my way out. But…I’m sort of a rebel. I start where I want to. I know that it is a bad idea to start around the toilet but I do anyway. I lay out all of the tile and step back and look…And from what I can see I am going to need about 7 more boxes of tile. Because measuring is for losers. At this point, I wasn’t fully committed to actually installing the tile. I was on the fence which is why I had only grabbed 3 boxes. So, after seeing the tile laid out I decided that I needed to commit or get off the pot. Back to the first Lowes I go!
I go right to the flooring department and grab 4 more boxes, even though I had guesstimated I needed at least 7 more boxes. Why? Because doing things the hard way is the way I was raised. I never have the proper tools for the job, I never begin or end the easy way. I drive home and lay out the rest of the tile. It seems like it’s all sorts of uneven. I guess that’s what those spacers are for huh? I stand there and have to talk myself into doing this the right way. Spend the extra money and do it right. I will be happier. In my moment of doubt, I call a flooring guy from craigslist. But he didn’t answer so I left a message. Anyway,back to Lowes I go for spacers, a tile cutter, tape for the gaping hole in the floor and a grout smoother thingy.
I got home and cracked open the mastif and started gluing that shit down! And by shit I mean my elbows, my shorts, my hair, some tile, and my pinky toenail. I’m a messy worker. I know this about me so it is not a surprise or anything. I was almost fully covered in tile glue when I stopped and again had a small crisis of faith. Who did I think I was? This is going to look like crap, I am going to hate it and be so disappointed in myself. And just then, the phone rang. It was the craigslist guy. He said he could do it for me…for 300 bucks. Yeah, my faith resolved and I suddenly had a burst of Bob Vilia and I said “Thank you craigslist guy but not today! Today, I tile my own floor!” And I hung up and went to town on that mofo!! I cut a couple of tiles with my hand held tile cutter, I glued down every piece of tile I had, I taped the hole and glued over it. As I worked I remembered that I have a sense of humor, that every house in town is crooked and no one has even floors and that the Native Americans design a mistake into every pattern they make to stay humble. So, my bathroom floor is a tribute to my humble sense of humor. Or maybe it’s a tribute to Lisa “Left Eye” Lopes. I’m not really sure. Those mastif fumes were pretty intense.
This is not the end, my friends. Tomorrow, I grout. Four trips to two different Lowes today and I have to go back one more time. It may not be the easy way but it is my way…it’s Frank Sinatra’s way…Stay tuned for the final reveal.