Old Wife Tricks

My swatch collection.

My swatch collection.

Perhaps some of you remember that we redid a bathroom recently. During that remodel, our contractor encouraged me to pick the wall color before the granite and lighting went in. I will never do that again. When the counter went in and the new lights were up, the walls changed to a hue that didn’t compliment. I’ve tried to ignore this snafu, but using that room several times a day, it’s been impossible. I had two huge problems. 1) I didn’t know what new color to paint the walls, and 2) I knew getting Grandpa Bill to favor repainting would take some sweet talking.

Thus began my covert painting-swatch adventure. “No need to stress out grandpa until I had made a firm decision on the color,” I thought. But, I didn’t know how I would accomplish this? The swatches had to be applied near the granite and under the new lighting.  Grandpa uses the bathroom all the time, he’d see them? I came up with a plan to test samples during the day in the area where my hand towel hangs. By the time grandpa got home from work, my towel would be up and he wouldn’t be the wiser. A wife’s gotta do what a wife’s gotta do!

At first my plan worked p e r f e c t l y.  I’d paint a small swatch or two, let them dry, hang my towel and everything was fine. However, picking a paint color proved way more difficult than I had anticipated. The swatches began to encroach outside the shadow of the towel. Stupidly, I became more confident – your basic criminal mindset. Assuring myself that grandpa Bill really wasn’t that observant, I still planned to hold out until I had found the perfect color and then I’d break the news to him.

My attempt to hid the evidence.

My attempt to hide the evidence. Brilliant!

It wasn’t our most fun morning when Bill noticed that my hand towel area looked a little odd. Knowing me very well, he guessed what I was planning. He expressed shock and disbelief in raised tones saying something like “We just paid a contractor to paint that room, are you crazy?” And on and on . . . I knew better than to say anything – the writing was “on the wall,” so to speak. By dinner time, grandpa had recovered from the shock and was calmer. I admitted that I understood his frustration and tried to explain my reasoning. Then, I used a tried-and-true spouse phrase, “I’m asking you to support me in this?”

Just because I’m an old wife, doesn’t mean I’m a wise wife. We’ll look back on this little episode and laugh someday. For now, however, we’re just repainting the bathroom.

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