I was going to title this post as the Eye of Satan, but that seemed pretty extreme…but at the time, that’s what it felt like.
It was 4:30 p.m. and I was tired. Very tired. I had spent most of the day hauling a chair around and crawling into tight spaces to paint the trim in the kitchen. I was just heading upstairs from the basement when I tripped on the torn, 1970’s grotesque brown “marble print” vinyl floor patch at the top of the stairs. I have tripped on that floor patch 5 million times before…but since it was garbage night…and Hubby was away for the day on a business trip (and wouldn’t be home until 7) – I decided to tear it up. The stained hard wood floor underneath was definitely prettier. How hard could it be? It was already loose so remove the 6 screws on the kick plate and pull.
So I pulled out the big box of screwdrivers, got comfy on the floor and started searching for a screwdriver that would fit these screws…but these screws are not of this world.
My theory is they came through a Star Gate portal. Picture a circle with a line running through it – kind of like an eye! I have a box of 65 screwdrivers and not one of them really worked…I tried Phillips; I tried flat and hex heads and Robertsons. I tried not to grind the screwdrivers into dust. I had to kneel and push down with my full weight just to make a quarter turn. Eventually, my hands and knees aching, my back screaming, I managed to unscrew 5 out of 6 screws (and only shaved 3 knuckles)…but #6 was the “eye of Satan”. It was diabolical. I got it half-way up and it stopped. It wouldn’t budge, up or down, and it was right where we walked so I had to make it move. I called it names and growled at it. I gave it the “skunk eye”. I frantically tried different screwdrivers, different sitting positions, and different angles. The more I tried to move it, the shinier it became, a gleaming golden eye mocking my futile efforts. Little Guy was sure he could make it move and I figured he might as well try. Who knows? Maybe he’d get lucky. Not!
I was being driven to madness…so I used the next best thing…brute force! Put my Mud Hero training to work! I started to pry that kick plate bar off the floor with a big flathead screwdriver. First I pried in places where I had already removed the screws – the kick plate was glued to the floor there from years of grime…Then I pried directly beside the beast. Sounding like a woman in the throes of labour, I grunted and groaned, baring my teeth and panting with exertion. I broke into a heavy sweat and had to pause to rip off my sweatshirt. I changed positions to let gravity help me in my endeavour. And then, with a final big push, the kick plate and it’s stubborn, twisted screw broke free of the floor. With the joy of a new mother, I heaved a sigh of relief and admired all that my efforts had procured.
Once I caught my breath, I found great satisfaction in tearing out the remaining vinyl and sticky strips, and tossing it out the back door. (I did go out later to bag it up and toss it to the curb). But I’m not sure what to do with these screws…what if they are of alien origin and they are an accused weapon against humanity? What if they fell into the wrong hands? Diabolical little screws…
p.s. I checked…this screw didn’t make the List of Screws in Wikipedia.