Monday, November 24, 2008
I've always felt a bit slighted in that my home is just new enough that my chances of finding money in the walls or letters from Abraham Lincoln are fairly slim. Conversely, it's just old enough such that the insulation is dubious at best and very few things are "standard." But this weekend I got a taste of what it's like to find something old, original, and somewhat amazing -- something hidden worth restoring instead of just replacing.
My office is great. Everyone loves the color and it's a great place to work. BUT, I've never been a fan of the cheapo beige carpeting. It was neutral, but really ill-suited to the space. For one, it's an office. But, and perhaps more importantly, my office backs to the pool and in the summer months I frequently leave the french doors open and casually make my way from work to pool to work to pool and back again. Not really a great environment for carpet.
Simple, cheap, inoffensive, beige carpet. I knew it had to go. I had heard that many Cliff May homes like mine came from tile in every room when they were built. I figured I either had that or bare concrete. So I pulled up the carpet:
I got the tile. I was expecting black...the ubiquitous color what I have learned is called vinyl composition tile. At this point (and anyone who has owned an older knows this juncture) you need to either go for it or put the carpet back. I had a bunch of concerns but capriciously swept them aside with the gusto that only curiosity can muster.
I'm not a complete neophyte. I knew this type of flooring required a little "extra" maintenance. I had often heard the term "waxing the floor" but never knew exactly what it meant. I thought you got some good, rubbed it on the floor, and had a shiny floor. Haha........no. You know you're in trouble when the products used to maintain such floors are referred to as a system. That a codeword for: crapload of steps. I'll outline them:
- Use special cleaner on the floor
- Wet mop rinse
- Use special stripper on the floor
- Wet mop rinse (before it dries and hazes!)
- Wet mop rinse again
- Apply first coat of sealer (and wait for it to dry)
- Apply second coat of sealer (and wait for it to dry)
- Apply first coat of finish (and wait for it to dry)
- Apply second coat of finish (and wait for it to dry)
- Apply third coat of finish (and wait for it to dry)
- Apply fourth coat of finish (and wait for it to dry)