These things are now almost 30 years old. I got them shortly after I moved into the last house, and I lived there 15 years. Of course, they had to come with me when I moved…and I’ve now been here around 14 years.
Their particular charm? They’re REAL wicker.
Which is to say, they’re ludicrously comfortable to sit in.
I don’t think they even make “wicker” chairs out of real wicker anymore. They’re all that weather-proof stuff, which is great in terms of lasting power…but which is a) ludicrously expensive and b) ludicrously uncomfortable. I have yet to find a chair made of that stuff that feels good to sit in. As a matter of fact, as we scribble my back is hurting in the backyard weatherproof fake-wicker chairs.
This is probably the fourth or fifth time I’ve refreshed the white paint on those things.
Which brings us to the new-fangled joys of the goddamn paint available on today’s politically correct market. Again.
This fine Rustoleum — same brand I’ve always used, purchased at the same ineffable Home Depot warehouse — does. not. cover.
As in does NOT EFFING COVER AT ALL.
Where Ruby chewed off the ends of a pair of rockers, I’d sanded and fashioned “end caps,” as it were, out of plastic wood. Nice idea except the damn “caps” fall off if you look crooked at them. So this morning I threw them out and just sanded the shortened rockers nice and smooth.
I don’t know what these fine Pier One chairs are made of, but it looks sort of like…oh…cardboard pulp, maybe? It doesn’t have a grain. It’s soft, kind of…mushed-together-looking stuff. The ONLY reason these superb pieces of furniture have survived all these years is that they’ve never been directly exposed to the elements. They’re not only under cover, but every time real weather comes in, I dart outside and drag the things into the house. So they’ve never once been rained on or sprinklered on.
Okay. I’ve sanded off the chewed rockers and also gently rubbed each entire chair down to bat off peeling and chipping paint, which seems to occur as a result of wear and extreme temperature.
Now flip a chair upside down, spray the Rustoleum over the rockers, and then go on about my business covering the backside of the chair and then…and then…and then glance up at the rocker and see I’ve failed to cover the end of the rocker with paint.
I just coated that thing.
The paint is SUCH GODDAMN SHIT that it doesn’t even cover enough to stain the toilet-roll-cardboard-that-is-the-rocker white! Not even FAINTLY fuckin’ white.
I spray it again. Wait for it to partially dry.
It barely covers. At least it doesn’t look like it’s never even been touched by the effluent of a spray nozzle. But…it’s not white.
I had to spray coat after coat after coat after COAT to even begin to cover the sanded ends OR the tiny spots where the old paint had chipped off the wicker.
Fortunately I foresaw this, now being inured to Life in the Fuckin’ Brave New World, and bought FOUR cans of white spray paint. Normally one can will cover one of the chairs. But instinct told me…better overstocked than mad as a cat…
“EVEN STICKS TO PLASTIC,” Rustoleum crows on its paint can.
I usually cover my right hand — the sprayin’ hand — with a latex glove, but since I don’t normally get my left hand in the paint, I left it ungloved.
So I get into the paint. And now I can’t get the damn stuff off. No amount of scouring with a stiff nail brush will remove the damn paint from the painted paw.
Finally I resort to cooking oil.
You know how duct tape is the Home Handyman’s Secret Weapon? Well…cooking oil is the Home Handywoman’s Secret Weapon. Cooking oil will remove almost anything from any surface that does not absorb oil. Such as, say, your paws.
After soaking in oil and scouring again with Dawn (always get the original blue kind, not the politically correct kind), most (but not all) of the paint came off the sore, angry hands.
Remember how you used to be able to turn a half-empty spray paint can upside down, squirt until only air came out, and then turn it back upright and it would be usable for another spray-painting frenzy?
No more. Nay verily.
When you try that with one of these clever new cans of Rustoleum, the damn thing just KEEPS ON SPRAYING. Thus you cannot save the remnants of a can of paint for a new project, or for a second coat later on. Because of course the spray doodad clogs up, and you are DONE spraying from that can.
Which is the case just now…