Thursday, January 11, 2007

I Demand the Return of My Living Room

Back in early December J and the Cracker hauled out all the Thomas crap and began construction on their biggest project ever. Over a period of weeks I watched the affected area of my living room grow. At first it was really cute to watch them, my two sons, discussing layout changes and playing trains, but as days turned into weeks it the damn thing kept spreading out and the cuteness faded long before their interest.

"Is it okay if I take this down?"
"Well, couldja kinda rework things a little, maybe move the roundhouse and the engine wash so that there's a path into the bedroom?"
"Uh, no! Do you know how long it took us to come up with this configuration?"

Sadly, I do.

(multiple nights in the preceding weeks)
"I'm going to bed, wink wink."
Picking my way around the above-mentioned obstacles I realize that my loving husband has not made a move.
"You coming?"
"I can't."
"I think I may have figured out how to fix blah blah blah! You see the way it is now, blah blah blah, you get forced in this direction blah blah blah can't turn around to go back to blah. So I'm thinking that if can rework blah blah then blah blah and blah blah flow!"
(He looks up at me, big ass smile, oh so pleased with the plan.)
"Are you fucking kidding me? Sex! You'd rather play trains by yourself in the dark than have sex?"
"I'll be there in a little while."
"What you're not getting is that this is a limited time offer."

Yesterday I had one of my I've-had-it! moments and I declared (to no one other than myself) the branch lines of Sodor relocated to a more out of the way location where I will not trip over them quite so often.

Compounding my frustration is the fact that we have an actual playroom off our living room. (In the model they called it the formal dining room, but I find I love my family more when I'm not cleaning food off carpet.) When you walk into our home the first thing you see is the living room ahead of you. It isn't until you get halfway down the entry hall that you realize there is a playroom on your left as well. I like it like that: the toys are all in his reach, I can keep track of him from the LR or the kitchen, but you cannot see the chaos from the front door.

So why isn't it in the playroom? Because the configuration spans 8 feet, 2 inches by 7 feet, 1 inch.

Welcome to my nightmare.

Not even daring to take a breath I ever so carefully, section by section, begin moving the land of Sodor from one end of the living room to the other, cursing myself that I did not remember to first take a few digital pictures in case I accidentally rip it all apart and cannot figure out how to get it back together just so. Simultaneously I applaud myself for not buying more track for them at Christmas.

(Even with my 50% any one item at Michael's coupon I just could not bring myself to spend $1/inch for a few curved pieces.) (Most of our track is generic Imaginarium BOGOHO or the retired plastic yet compatible "Interactive Thomas" I bought on clearance 2 years ago at Target and later at Ross for a few pennies an inch.)

I move it to the corner recently vacated by our holiday tree. Crap, it doesn't even really fit there either. Should have measured first.

I spend the next hour wiggling it around the LR, a little to one side then the other, trying to figure out if minor adjustments will suddenly open up a fat path for foot traffic.


Pissed and mentally exhausted, I get up and look around. Hmmm...maybe if I move the couch and the big chair...

Forty-five minutes and no solution later my mind yells out "WFT are you doing rearranging your living room furniture for Thomas and Friends? This is bullshit! You have totally lost your mind woman! (But, on the plus side, maybe I'll leave it this way for the night. Having the couch smack dab in front of the TV like that would give us a much clearer shot for throwing Pirate's Booty at the President during his address. Decisions, decisions...)

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