Monday, May 21, 2007

False advertising

As I've mentioned before, I'm not exactly handy. But my utter lack of competence was revealed last night, as I attempted to assemble a screened gazebo in my backyard. To be fair, I'm fully aware that dexterity with tools is not one of my strong suits, so I've put off purchasing one of these things for years, waiting until I found one that didn't require five different kinds of wrenches et al.

Here are some images from the box of the item I bought. "Instant Up Garden Gazebo." Yes, "instant up" is just what I need!

And just to reinforce the alleged ease with which this garden gazebo can be assembled, to lull you into thinking it practically assembles itself, there's this:

"Easy set up. No tools required. Takes MINUTES, versus HOURS." And look at that, one fairly slight woman, who is not only not sweating and cursing, she's smiling as she sets this up alone, presumably minutes before her party guests arrive. (She's not wearing an outfit like the ripped jeans and threadbare t-shirt I reserve for yard work.) This is it, I think to myself, this is the gazebo I've been waiting for all my life.

Easy set up my ass! I'm here to tell you, that it took me and a friend a total of two hours to assemble this thing, and there was sweating and cursing. Later, as I stood in my yard admiring our handy work, I noticed one little thing amiss. So I pulled out my ladder, set it up on the none-to-stable patio flagstones, climbed to the top, and proceeded to fiddle with the roof, only to snap two pieces of the frame, as if it were made of toothpicks. And this was the result.

I will admit: I cried. I ranted and raved. But in the end, I'm very lucky, because I had several wonderful friends offer to help me disassemble it, load that f-er right back in my car, and put up whatever garden shelter I should choose as a replacement.


1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Dear HTT,

Can it be that you just don't realize your strength?

A fan.