My brother, Timothy, has been collecting a lot of scrap metal lately. He claims he’s going to build a power station with it, by which he means… actually, to be perfectly honest, I have no idea what he means. I very much doubt that he knows what he means, beyond the notion of it having some kind of patched-together metal shell.
What I do know is that the metal is piling up on our property, to an extent that’s becoming a problem. I’ve noticed more than a couple of raised eyebrows from passers-by, and I’m a bit concerned that people are going to pin us as the local hoarders if the pile doesn’t start getting used for something soon.
Old Terry over the way asked me the other day if he could buy some of the metal for Mary to use in a giant turtle she’s working on. I’d forgotten about those two and their sculpture garden, which I still haven’t gotten around to visiting. To tell you the truth, I’ve got half a mind to take Old Terry up on that offer if Timothy doesn’t get moving on his power station soon.
I also had the idea of building Timothy and I a pair of 4×4 ute canopies. The notion is admittedly half-baked, as I’m not all that skilled at welding, and I’ve never worked with random scrap metal before. The canopies would be pretty cobbled together, but still… there might be something to it.
Timothy never uses his ute any more, though. He’s all about that electric bike of his. Now, I could probably build some kind of half canopy for that; it wouldn’t be too big of a job, and the road-safety stakes might be a bit lower since it doesn’t go that fast anyway. Then again, if Timothy’s dinnertime ramblings are to be believed, he’s planning to put a much bigger motor on it, which is why he needs his own power station. So he says, anyway.
All I know is that he’d better get cracking on it.
Anyone remember that movie, Ledge of the Moro? I honestly don’t remember much about it…something about people cliff-diving while eating terrible off-brand chocolate. Also, aliens. Creepy CG aliens that didn’t move like normal living creatures, which I guess was a deliberate design choice to make them seem even more unsettling. Hard to describe, but they were all shifty and warpy, like they were characters in an online game with loads of lag.
That was how I felt going into work today. Jim brought along that new set of mobile aluminium scaffolding that he’s been raving about for so long, he empties it out of the box and it just…sets itself up. It landed in a huge pile, all loose and higgledy-piggledy. Just a pile of metal. Then it starts to hum and sets itself up, this massive bit of scaffolding assembling bit by bit until it’s absolutely huge. Honestly? Really unsettling to watch. Not sure why this was necessary either, because the guys and I don’t usually have any problems setting up the scaffolding. It’s not exactly the hardest puzzle in the world once you’ve done it a few times, and then you get the satisfaction of knowing you’ve handled every piece of the thing you’ll be walking on.
Unfortunately, the boss was totally fine with the weird moving metal thing, and we had to spend most of the day on top of it. Can’t say I was too happy about climbing that thing, and even less about spending time up there, but it at least felt okay. Definitely didn’t feel like a flimsy thing that just assembled itself but…still makes me uneasy. I like my custom ladders to be just that: custom, set up by me. I don’t even care if Lawrence Corp brings out a construction bot that does our job for us, aluminium platform setting up and all…it just makes me nervous.
I know everyone has their preferences for things. Up until I was fifteen I used to tell everyone that my favourite colour was puce, purely because I thought I was being unique and edgy. So…that was embarrassing. I once dated a guy whose favourite type of music was catchy elevator tunes; he had CDs that he played in the car and everything. Weird relationship in general, not that I think about it. Should’ve been a warning sign from our very first car ride together, when he put in the tape and excitedly told me that it was a jazz version of ‘Hey Jude’. That’s not a jazz song, in case anyone had the slightest bit of doubt.
But yeah, everyone has their thing, and I’ll allow it. But my husband wanting to paint one side of our house purple? Where did he even GET the idea? I only went along with it because I thought it was relatively easy to reverse. Him and my father-in-law showed up on Saturday with their folding platform steps and a whole set of mobile scaffolding that can’t possibly have fit inside his tiny garage, and they went to work. I had to climb that mobile scaffolding to bring them lunch, I’ll have you know. I actually became a part of this madness, no matter how small that part was. So then I go inside and wait for them to finish with the tentative air of a soldier hiding in the trenches and waiting for the bullets to stop flying. All I can see through the kitchen window is the metal of the mobile scaffolding, so I’m trying to keep busy whilst wondering what my house is going to look like afterwards.
Terrible, is the answer to that question. I thought we were going for a dark purple, something classy that would mark us as distinct but still stay subtle. Nope. In the bright light of the sun, that thing shines like a puce beacon, like our house has a skin coating.
So, they’re coming back this Saturday, mobile scaffolding and all, to do it right. This time, they can pack their own lunches.
I have been looking into ways to create a mobile dog washing business since my great idea. Of course, it would have to be Scott’s business, seeing as I never made it to dentistry school. I have been looking at how to modify a vehicle to incorporate all the necessary gear for washing dogs. It turns out that the dog cleaning equipment is quite hefty, so if we get a ute we would have to look into ute under tray drawers to maximise storage space.
I have not yet informed Scott of my incredible idea for him to run a mobile dog grooming business. As far as I know, no such service exists yet. He could be a pioneer. This is part of the appeal, but also part of the difficulty. Because there are no mobile dog washers, there is no precedent for how one would operate or what type of equipment they would have. As a result, I think it would be most proactive for me to focus on the practical details before bringing my idea to Scott.
If a ute with a custom aluminium fit-out seems unconventional, it’s because there is no convention. I am thinking that some of the more hardy equipment could be strapped onto a roof rack, while the rest could be stored in a custom ute under body boxes. I have even thought of the perfect name for the mobile dog groomers, but I do not want to reveal it just yet. You have to be careful with what you put on the internet, and the name is so perfect that I am worried a conniving reader will steal it.
While researching vehicle modifications for the business, I found out that you can get removable service bodies for extra storage. When you have a mobile business, your vehicle needs to have not only all the tools of the trade, but also your office. A drawer system would allow storage for all the hallmarks of being a dog grooming professional. I can’t wait to see all the cute puppies!