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Some Days

Some days are destined to be expensive. This, alas, is one of them. I knew it was bound to be, because I had my appointment with Mike the blinds guy, but it didn’t quite go like I expected.

The morning began with $200 worth of dentistry, for a cleaning and exam plus a genuinely awful full-mouth set of x-rays. This was followed by $450 worth of tires. My rear-passenger side tire had developed a slow leak, which fact I failed to notice until much too late, due to my failure to approach the car from the passenger side, like, ever. The result was that I stupidly ran on the tire while it was all but flat, resulting in severe damage to the sidewall. I knew that I was going to need to replace at least two of the tires because of this, but thought it likely that I’d need all four. I’m glad I prepared myself for the worst-case scenario here; the car only has 47,000 miles on it, but it’s seven years old (yes, I never drive anywhere at all), and the Firestones that came as original equipment on the car were showing their age. The tire guy showed me significant crackage between the steel belt and the sidewall, and told me that Firestones have a bad tendency toward tread separation as they age. I don’t drive an SUV, but would still prefer to drive with the treads attached to my tires; ergo, four new ones.

And all this was before the financial main event of the day, the visit from Mike the blinds guy. I’ve been putting off getting the windows in the living room/dining room taken care of, but the heat of the last month (and, of course, an imminent visit from my parents, who will no doubt be horrified that I haven’t gotten my windows treated after six months) finally pressed me into action. A couple of decisions, a little internet research, and a phone call later, and I had an appointment with Mike. He arrived with a kit full of samples, and I thorougly surprised myself by actually liking the polywood better than the real wood, in the shade I wanted. The polywood (a PVC/wood blend) is heavier, but super-durable, and 50% less expensive. And honestly, from a distance of greater than a foot away, I’d have been hard pressed to tell that the sample wasn’t actually wood. I’m hoping I haven’t let the expensiveness of my day affect my choice here, and I’m hoping that what was true of the sample turns out to be true of the finished blinds, but at the moment, at least, I’m feeling pretty confident about my choice. And astonishingly, Mike the blinds guy is only charging me just under $700 for the nine windows I’m having him cover — and that includes installation.

Today, I really needed to be surprised by the lowness of a price. Thanks, Mike.


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