Tacos and Alchemy

It was a very productive weekend.

03-15-16_4-09-16 PM

Marta Parisi

It started out on a social note. Marta Parisi took the ferry across the bay with Wanda and me after work for a taco night, courtesy of Wanda’s rapidly-increasing culinary skills. I’d been telling her a lot about the progress of the house, and I suppose she wanted to see it for herself. I confess I was a bit nervous about it — Marta can be a bit of a snob, for lack of a better word — but she seemed to be genuinely impressed by the progress, even if she was constantly brushing construction dust off her blouse.

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Do you see what I saw?

The following morning, I got started on a few projects I’d been wanting to do. Although the construction of the house has been going very well, there’s been a noticeable lack of some minor luxuries around here: furniture, for example. That point was driven home during Marta’s visit, when we all stood around eating tacos standing up, because there’s just nowhere to sit.

In order to alleviate that situation, a large part of Saturday was spent out in my workshop. By the end of the day I had cobbled together a reasonably sturdy set of bar stools, which I already love. Sitting and eating at the same time? What will they think of next?

03-16-16_10-41-30 AM

Eating is now slightly less vertical

Now, I’ll admit it: my woodworking isn’t exactly world-class. The barstools aren’t going to be showing up at your local fine furnishings store any time soon, and I probably hit my thumb more often than I hit a nail. And, well, it’s a lot of work. By the end of it my arms were tired, my hands were sore, and I couldn’t help thinking there had to be a better way to furnish the house than to spend my weekends crushing my phalanges with a hammer.

Then it occurred to me: Cailleach. I’d already built in the transmutation circuitry. In theory, I could collect some of the old broken furniture from the ruins out at the Bluffs, perform a little molecular manipulation, and bam! New furniture. I hadn’t completely forgotten that the last time I’d tried it I’d lit Mr. Seymour’s cubicle on fire, but I was exhausted, my hands were throbbing in pain, and anything sounded better than spending another day at the workbench.

Too tired to haul my sorry ass out to the Bluffs, I decided my first test subject would be the old reliable air mattress. I went and got Cailleach, pointed her at the bed, and pulled the trigger.

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Farewell, old friend

The results were unexpected, but definitely not in the “Oh my God, I just lit the house on fire” kind of way I was half-expecting. Instead, the mattress started glowing as the molecules were rearranged. The glow got brighter and brighter, until I was literally blinded by it. Great, I thought. What’s better than being in a burning house? Being in a burning house with no eyes. This was not good.

Slowly, though, my vision started to return. I strained to focus, and as I did, the most beautiful thing imaginable started to take shape in front of me. Well, the second most beautiful, in case Wanda is reading this.

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Now that’s a bed

Who’s your daddy? That’s right, I am. My transmutation had been a glorious success, and what now stood before me was not only an actual bed, but the most comfortable bed I’ve ever had the pleasure to sleep on.

I immediately called Wanda in to take a look. Her jaw dropped. She looked at the bed, then looked at me, and I saw a smile spread across her face. Then her eyes dropped to Cailleach and the smile was gone, to be quickly replaced by a look of anger that I can’t really describe, except to say that it looks a lot like you’d expect your wife’s face to look after she’s discovered you just did something very likely to burn her home into a smoldering, ashy crater.

After the reaming I got, I don’t think I’ll be doing that again any time soon. But damn, it’s a nice bed.


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