House of sticks

Basic framing of the walls is about 75% done.

Suddenly, the house appears. It’s all just 2x4s and some plywood sheathing: barely a sketch at this point. Even so, I can see it. I can walk from the kitchen to the living room, out onto the front porch, then into our bedroom. I can see where the walls are, where we’ll be walking, what people will see when they come in, what we’ll see when we look out the windows.

He’s Buying A Stairway To A Mudroom

Framing has started!


Joists are in and subfloor is starting. By this weekend, all the framing should be done – we’ll have a skeleton of a house.

Very exciting.

But, I’ve developed a concern; and it’s just under seven feet tall.

The part on the left is the garage, the stuff on the right is the house. Though it might look otherwise, the height of the wall between the garage and the floor of the house (counting the joists) is about seven feet on that back corner. The garage level will rise once they put the concrete floor in, but so will the level of the house once they put the subfloor and floor on it. So, that difference will stay.


That’s what it looks like standing in the garage, looking towards the house. The ‘mechanical’ room, where the hot water heater will go, is the space on the left. The door between the garage and the house (into the mudroom) is supposed to go on the right, roughly seven feet up. Assuming standard stair pitch, that’s at least twelve steps. The primary point of building a one story house being to avoid stairs, this concerns me.

Builder says there’s nothing that can be done about the foundation now.

Here’s the relevant part of the floor plan:

I was standing on the word “GARAGE”, for that last pic.

That’s assuming a flat lot, with garage and house built on the same level. And it shows four stairs (right), with room for maybe two more. But if we need twelve steps, we’ll need eleven-ish feet of horizontal space. Where the hell does that come from?

After talking it over with the builder, the garage entrance door is now going be in the mechanical room area and the staircase will snake around the corner to get there.

It’s still a lot of stairs that I wasn’t expecting. But… oh well. Always learning. Always surprised.

A Quick One While She Was Away

Mrs was out on a girl’s weekend this past weekend, so I finally got around to watching the Stones’ “Rock And Roll Circus” show. It was a thing the Stones filmed in 68, with performances from Jethro Tull (lip synced, but with Sabbath’s Tony Iommi on guitar), Taj Mahal, The Who, Marianne Faithful, “Dirty Mac” (John Lennon, Eric Clapton, Keith Richards and Mitch Mitchell) and The Stones. Dirty Mac did “Yer Blues” and then did a blues jam with a bewildered concert violinist sawing away while Yoko Ono screamed and howled next to him – it was surreal. There was a bunch of circus stuff, too.

Nearly all of it was at least pretty good. But, The Who’s bit was the best:

The Who A Quick One

What a monster band.

It’s much better on a big screen with lots of volume, and no audio sync problems, but this will have to do.

English as She is Spoke

Imagine a Portuguese speaker on the late 1800s attempting to write a Portuguese to English phrasebook, while not knowing any English but possessing both a Portuguese to French dictionary and a French to English dictionary.

It actually happened. And here’s the result.


My uncle what will to treat her beship in a great sumptuousness, he was go Avignon for to buy what one should not find there, and he had leave me the charge to provide all things. I have excellent business, as you see, and i know some thing more than to eat my soup, since i know do prepare it. I did learn that it must give to the first to second and to the third service, by dishes that want to join, and yet some thing more; because we does pretend make a feast at four services without to account the dessert.

It sounds like what you’d expect by putting text through a mechanical translator a couple of times. Because that’s basically what it is.


The Man Who Invented Sliced Bread

You’ve probably heard the phrase “The greatest thing since sliced bread”. And maybe you’ve wondered just WTF is so remarkable about sliced bread, and how there could possibly be a time before sliced bread. Did people in some long passed time just take turns biting off a communal loaf?

Well, there actually was a time before sliced bread – packaged, pre-sliced bread, that is – and it wasn’t all that long ago.

The first loaf of commercially produced, pre-sliced bread was sold in Missouri in 1928. And it was sliced and packaged using a machine invented by Otto Frederick Rohwedder, a jeweler, watchmaker, ophthalmologist and inventor.

Wonder Bread was created in 1930. And by 1933, sliced bread was outselling unsliced bread.

Rohwedder’s machine in now in the Smithsonian.