I didn’t have the heart to take his picture, but I wanted to.

I spent the day yesterday not in my office where I can work to make money, but out on site where I can work to not pay other people money. Our drywall begins Wednesday afternoon and I’m behind on a couple of things I promised to take care of, and to help Jesse, hence my day away from the office.

It was a hot, humid (by Spokane standards) and long day. Towards the end of the day Jesse came over to answer yet another remedial question I had about running bathroom vent lines and he looked, well, like an older and stronger version of one of those kids from the coal mines in the 1920s. He was sweating, covered in black dust from the chalk lines he was snapping on the ceiling, and looking like he was in dire need of a cool veranda and glass of iced tea. Working with me does that to a person.

Jesse is second from the left.

So, back to drywall. I’ll post pictures later this week, but for the first time, well ever, the house is completely clear of sawdust, tools, scrap wood and brooms. It’s at the “lovely bones” stage. No, not the good book or horrible movie, but the beautiful skeleton stage. Everything is in place. Rooms are defined. Light streams in. And we can’t wait for what comes next.

Before signing off, here are a few final thoughts. I realize that the thoughts below are far less interesting than say design discussions or whatever, but when you’re building a house you learn all kinds of stuff:

  • If you believe in the caste system, and I make poor ethical choices in the coming years, I’ll likely live my next life as an insulation contractor. I know, I know, we have a SIP house and there’s barely any insulating to do. But still, it’s one of the least pleasant jobs on site. Even with a mask and long-sleeved everything, that nasty stuff is miserable.

Sudras. That's me!

  • Don’t forget to wear your gloves. I realize I sound like your mother. But seriously, I took them off for two minutes and in that time managed to accidentally trigger the drill I was holding while changing the four inch hole saw attachment. Result? A super-fun infection, a big band aid and tube of anti-biotic cream. By the way, here are my new favorite work gloves. Leather palms that are barely padded, low cut so they don’t irritate my wrists, and wear like iron–especially when handling stuff like plywood.

My latest gloves are similar to this, sans the goofy plastic Star Wars stormtrooper plastic stuff.Great cable, and yes we will repurpose those spools for something cool!

  • On HVAC. If insulating is my least favorite job, running vent lines comes next. I know that I’ll appreciate how silent our bathroom fans are now that they’re linked to their difficult to install rigid vent lines, but the flexible stuff would have made life much easier.

Rigid vent line. Difficult, persnickity, but oh-so-quiet.

  • If you ever need spray foam for insulating around outlets and windows, I highly recommend DAP over Great Stuff. GS gets everywhere and is near-impossible to clean. DAP? The opposite. The only downside is it’s modestly more expensive. Totally worth it, especially when you’re spraying it next to clear vertical grain fir windows.

You know you're a geek when you get excited about this stuff.

  • A quick shout out to the good people from our local electronic store at Huppin’s / OneCall. Great customer service is so refreshing. I called looking for speaker cable. They didn’t have what I needed, but had an installation truck stop by and deliver more than enough to get the job done. It almost made up for my experience with that television company that uses ugly gray dishes to capture and deliver satellite images.
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