“When anybody asks, 'What are you writing about now?' if I try to reply, the book-in-the-works sounds so idiotic to me that I think, 'Why am I trying to write that puerile junk?' So now I give up; if I could talk about it, I wouldn't have to write it."
- Madeleine L'Engle, A Circle of Quiet


Nature Girl?

Sunday, June 26, 2005

It's official. I despise house-painting. We have spent the past 3 months painting our house in preparation for selling it. The soggy spring weather kept us from moving along very quickly until about 2 weeks ago when it finally started to clear up. Since then we have learned far more about the outside of our house than I care to know. Every time we think we are almost done, we find that there is another spot we missed or another little nook we didn't know was there. It's getting really old. Make that gotten really old.

Nevertheless, I still prefer houses with wood siding. It's worth the effort to have a house sided in a natural material. And yes, I realize that the paint is essentially plastic, but you have to cover the wood in something. My apologies to anyone who has vinyl siding on their home. I don't mean any offense, but I can't stand the stuff. I'm one of those really annoying people who holds form over function and to me that means natural materials everywhere. I know it's completely illogical - my Geek points this out to me all the time - but I just can't stand the fact that a vinyl-sided home is essentially covered in plastic. In my mind it's like wrapping your home in saran wrap. Sure it's practical, but it's plastic for goodness sake! I just can't do it.

The Geek and I are going to use wood siding on our dome with a natural stain. Maybe a little impractical, but natural and beautiful. Of course, since the house is a dome, most of it will be covered in traditional tar shingles. Ironic isn't it. We thought about other options, but the only other option is cedar shingles. Now I like wood, but we saw a cedar shingled dome once and it looked like a giant hairy mushroom. NOT attractive at all!

So we will have a tar-shingled dome roof with a riser wall sided in natural-stained wood. Since the sided part will be minimal compared to the rest of the house, it should be less of a chore to refinish when needed. If I'm wrong then the local house painter will become one of our best friends.

I'm this way with the rest of my home too. If I had my way, there would be no plastic in the house. Everything would be made of natural materials like wood, stone, metal, paper, cloth, or pottery. The plastic cups and dishes are stored in the very top cupboard or in the very back, since I rarely ever use them.

I'm not sure why I am this way, except that I'm just a little old-fashioned and have a little bit of a nature freak in me. I'm not your typical nature freak though. When I think of a nature freak, I think of a skinny little person who spends most of her time hiking through woods studying wildlife, including bugs, and eats only fruits, vegetables, and grains. That does not describe me. I am not skinny by any means, I am addicted to cheese and ice cream, and I'm terrified of bugs. I am an at-home vegetarian, which means I don't cook meat at home and I try to eat veggie at restaurants but I'll eat chicken or turkey if there are no other acceptable options. So I guess you could say that I am a nature-loving, bug-fearing, natural-fibers-wearing, overweight, part-time vegetarian, bible-toting, Christian, crunchy granola, conservative, Republican. How many contradictory political stereotypes can
you find in that sentence? Ok, so maybe I'm unique after all. But whatever the case may be, I will be avoiding painting an entire house for a very, very long time.


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