My father was a master electrician, and was very handy when it came to power tools and carpentry. Me not so much. I have the desire, some of the tools, but none of the knowledge. The new house has ramped up all three of those aforementioned points. I’m eager to learn how to do all the household repairs, renovations and fixes that I can, and I need to buy a few new tools along the way. Tonight was particularly stressful. I wish my Father was here to help me, but alas that’s not to be. My Father has been gone since 1989. Thankfully my brain fills in the gaps to trick my memory into thinking he can.
This was my first attempt at electrical work in the new house. Simple stuff to my father, a former master electrician. Drill some holes. Move some boxes. Run some lines. Attach some outlets. This is Electrical 101… in an out in a half hour. Simple stuff right? Yeah, sure. It took me a good 5 minutes to get the courage to cut the first wire from the outlet, and when I did my head was titled, my eyes were squinted, teeth clenched and I was super tense. I am not going to get into the reasons why this is a big deal for me in this post, but those who know why… know why.
The nice thing is I spent the evening with my Father. He was constantly over my shoulder saying. “Turn the power off at the breaker, did you check twice? You know the proper way to remove a light socket is… You should really have the proper wire strippers… Good thing your friend Mike is here to help you… Okay, you don’t need four different voltage meters, one good one will do. Really? Who breaks a flat head screwdriver? Are you going to place a dimmer switch for the ceiling fan? Here is how you untwist a wire nut… You need to reroute the wire under the floors to bypass the new opening you made for the french doors… oh by the way the opening is too large for the doors, Joe. Make sure you ground the copper wire. Electrical tape, do you have electrical tape, or did you use it to make smash up derby cars for your stuffed animals again?… Did you make sure the power is off?
Let’s just say it’s a good thing my pal Mike is there to help me. Who knows what my Father would be saying to me if he wasn’t. What I do know is that I would still be sitting on the floor waiting for the courage to cut that wire.