Living Conditions

A few words about moving into a new place:

  • If you need to hang up pictures, posters, curtains, basically anything that you want to be at right angles to walls or gravity, a tape measure and a laser level (Thanks, Mel!) are must-have tools.
  • If you need to put down plastic liners in your drawers and cupboards, pull the old ones up beforehand. I had to pull up five layers of that crap here, and and it was repugnant. In the dark ages, the royalty had dining halls where they’d just put down another layer of straw over the discarded scraps until the the whole place had to be shovelled out by the peasantry; I once had to pull six layers of drywall, twenty layers of wallpaper and at least six different kinds of mold off the walls of an old house because nobody had bothered to pull down the old stuff before installing the new stuff. This is how vermin live, not civilized people.
  • You may want to replace your shower head, if your shower seems less than enthusiastic; it’s cheaply done, those things clog over time, and a hot shower under good water pressure is also a must-have. Invest in one set of really, really nice towels as a luxury item.
  • Generally speaking, you should not move into anywhere carpeted. If you do, you should have the rug professionally steam-cleaned before you bring in any furniture.
  • Clean under the fridge, behind the stove and every flat surface, edge and corner before you put furniture in. Crap builds up in the crevices, and that’s how people wind up chronically sick. See above point re: vermin.
  • Ikea, among all their wondrous goods, makes “Billy” bookshelves; these are the de-facto International Standard Bookshelf, and if you buy one now you will be able to buy another one exactly like it in six months or five years when you run out of room.

Thank you for your attention.

4 Comments

  1. Ben
    Posted September 20, 2004 at 7:13 pm | Permalink

    Revision to point the second: If you need to put down plastic liners in your drawers and cupboards, first go out into your front lawn and slap yourself around until you get over it.

    I’ve never understood why people do this.

  2. Mike Hoye
    Posted September 20, 2004 at 9:14 pm | Permalink

    A lack of understanding doesn’t obviate a need. Plastic drawer liners can be easily cleaned with water and soap in a way that the typical interior surface of drawers, pressboard or particle board, cannot without causing water damage and consequent mold. Glassware in restaurants, for example, is stored on dry, non-absorbent surfaces for health reasons as a matter of law, not as a matter of unthinking habit.

  3. Ben
    Posted September 21, 2004 at 12:50 pm | Permalink

    Outside of the restaurant business, how often does one wash cupboards and drawers with water and soap?

    Not trying to be difficult, it’s just been a pet… peeve is too strong. Curiousity, perhaps. It seems a dreadful lot of trouble (for you and those who come after you) for not much gain.

  4. Mike Hoye
    Posted September 21, 2004 at 1:40 pm | Permalink

    How often? At least once when you move in. More than that, if you’re at all sensible: the dust that builds up in houses is made up, for the most part, of sloughed hair and skin cells. Couple that with the nasties that grow in humid environments like, say, a kitchen, and I’ll take a surface that’s easy to wipe off with a little warm soapy water now and then as a clean win over the few hours of install time. That shit builds up, and I say again, this is how people get sick.

    I’m sure that autoclaving surgical tools or washing your hands is a huge pain in ass to some people, too.

    I’m not the tidiest person in the world but none of my messes are organic, a distinction I think is extremely important.