5.28.2008

Episode V: The Cabinet Fights Back

Ok so that's a lame title for the post, but it's pretty accurate. I donned my PPG this afternoon and tried out the Citristrip on the door panels. You know, there's nothing like being decked out for a chemical spill cleanup to make one's afternoon. The Citristrip is pretty good stuff, whatever it is, though it does make a rather big mess. If you leave it on long enough (which I hadn't yet in this shot) it basically does all the work for you.

2008-05-28_door.jpg

Hey, I do believe there is wood under all that crap. That's multiple layers of paint, by the way. Not one or two. A lot. 

So there I was, happily scraping away (well, not that happily, it was cold today, and getting close to sunset when I was doing all this) when suddenly, reality reared it's ugly head.

2008-05-28_door2.jpg

WTF? What the hell is that? Run. Grab the kids and run. RUN I SAID!!!

I don't know if that is nasty greasy stuff or mold, but I am seriously disturbed. Seriously disturbed. The mystery of why these doors were painted in the first place? I guess we can consider it solved. Oddly the nasty stuff is only on the top edge of the doors (both doors), which I can't really explain, unless it represents dust + grease (it is a kitchen after all) + never being cleaned, ever.

I would like to take this opportunity to point out yet again that this building is less than 30 years old. Unless these cabinets came from somewhere else (which I suppose is a possibility) then that is some serious neglect happening there.

I am now at a loss as to what to do. I finished (more or less) the whole stripping operation (I got a little sloppy toward the end but I figured I could always sand off any remaining paint) and the doors are hanging out in my bathroom drying, the bathroom being the only cat-safe location in my apartment other than outside, and see recent rants about the temperature. They actually don't look half bad, other than the icky stuff on the top edge and the fact that I seem to have also removed any varnish or shellac or whatever was on the doors before they were painted. They seem too heavy to be particle board but I do not know what they are. Fine wood they are not.

Anyway.

All told it did not take a terribly long period of time to strip (more or less) the paint from the doors. Though I did have to get them off the cabinets first. And disengage the hardware. And it did make a huge mess. And the state of the cabinets themselves (the frame) is as yet unchanged. So the question is this: do I continue to do this or do I wuss out and go to IKEA and buy some cheap-ass cabinet doors (not all their doors are cheap-ass but some are, and those are of course the ones of interest in this instance) that it just now occurred to me that I could maybe do? (Why did I not think of this before? Why?)

The second question is, if I continue in my quest to reuse what I already got (after all, I have a jug of paint stripper, not to mention chemical splash goggles and chemical protective vinyl gloves and a plastic scrapper thingie and a tin of mineral spirits and a paintbrush I can now no longer use for anything other than stripping paint. Oh yeah, and I have that primer too, that ought to last a good long time since I only used a very little bit on the handles (too bad that didn't come in tiny cans as well) and it probably would work just as well on wood as on metal because I think it is all-surface primer.) Anyway. If I continue this, what color should the doors be? Right now, at this moment, I am sort of leaning toward glossy white (true white, not this off-white beige-ish stuff they are now). Because I failed to mention that a lot of my small appliances are black and red. And chrome. But I am not very good at design - what do you think? I think given the red and black that pale pink or blue is rather out. :(

Anyone up for some more cheery photos?

2008-05-28_tomato_envy.jpg

That is actually not a cheery photo. That is a photo of my neighbor to my immediate right's balcony. The reason I took the photo is because I have tomato envy! They bought some starts somewhere (I bet it is early girl or some other common variety) and their tomato plant is far larger than mine. Do you see the tomato?! Also included in this shot is the evil rose "bush" that possibly infected my poor roses with powdery mildew. What you can't see in that photo is the mosquito breeding ground they have going over there. Seriously. All the pots are in basins that are perpetually full of water. I understand wanting to be sure those plants don't dry out under the withering glare of our summer sun, but leaving the pots sitting in water all the time is not good for the roots. Plus the mosquitos. I wonder if I could call the county on them.

Hey, I can't remember if I blogged this before, but because my own tomato seedlings (from seed) were so small I bought some tomato plants (heirloom, of course) of my own last week. This one is a black krim:

2008-05-28_black_krim.jpg

It has an almost-bud! I also bought two others, a green zebra and an eva purple ball, not counting the romas and red and white currant tomatoes I also have going. I don't know what I am going to do with so many tomatoes. I also did not realize that black krim is a beefsteak-type tomato - I hope there is enough room for it... The roma seedlings incidentally have put out their 3rd set of true leaves, so I will plant them in their permanent locations possibly this weekend. I have seven total (eight actually but one is really small still), but now I don't think I have space for seven since I bought the garden center ones... 

2008-05-28_romas.jpg

That's parsley on the left and an heirloom cilantro on the right that has actually gone to seed - anyone know how to collect seed from cilantro? (I know it doesn't look like cilantro, but believe me, it tastes like it!)

I also saw this little fly-type guy last week out on the side of one of the window boxes:

2008-05-27_little_bug.jpg

I do not know what it is or if it is good, bad, or otherwise, but aren't the wings wild? It had green eyes and a grey body, and it was probably no more than 1/4", and my camera had trouble auto-focusing on such a small thing.

Knitting! I did work on Jeanie, but the edging is surprisingly difficult, for me anyway. I finished the bottom edge, but I grafted it on backward (twisted) and it looks bad, so I'll have to redo it. I just hope there is enough yarn left to finish the top edge! I'm guessing it will be done in a day or two. 

Unless I am overcome by paint fumes.

2 Comments:

At 7:03 AM, Blogger Veronique said...

Well, I suppose you could sand the bottom gunk off of the cabinet doors... But that assumes you have extra time and patience!

 
At 1:46 PM, Blogger Opal said...

What an amazing amount of work you're putting in with the cabinets! And what an interesting looking fly. Those wings really are wild.

 

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