Monday, September 26, 2011

My Wrist Is Different

In that it is getting worse, rather than has been surgically repaired.

So at about 4:45pm on the Thursday before my scheduled wrist surgery (which you can read about a few posts ago), I got a phone call from the folks who would be doing the surgery.  They told me that my insurance wouldn’t cover it until July of 2012.


I asked why my insurance wouldn’t cover it and they replied that since I injured my wrist months ago, before I was insured by Blue Cross of Central Texas, they considered it a pre-existing condition, which isn’t covered in my apparently terrible health plan.  Not to worry though, as the folks who would be doing the surgery assured me that they would still love for me to come in at the scheduled time to get the surgery anyways.

This tickled me a bit.

Expecting hilarity, I asked them how much this would cost me, were I to still have the surgery.

The woman on the phone assured me that they gave heavy discounts for certain types of payment.  She went on to explain that if I chose to pay by credit card or personal check (what?), they would extend a whopping 65% discount.

I immediately asked what the price would be.

She again explained that the discount is significant and refused to actually quote the price after the discount.

I asked once again what the out of pocket cost for crazy wrist surgery is.

She explained the discount again and finally divulged the after-discount price:

Just over $8,800.

I laughed at her and told her that there was no way that I would pay that amount of money the next day.

She assured me that there was an even better discount if I chose to pay in another way.  I cut her off there and said something like, “is it going to be under a thousand dollars with this next incredible discount?”

She laughed at me and replied, “no.”

I thanked her for her time and terrible news and let her know that unless it was under $1,000, there was absolutely no chance of me showing up on time for my scheduled surgery.  I regret not having listened to the next incredible discount, but whatever, I didn’t want to waste anymore time.

In summation, I can’t get surgery until next July.  I have called multiple times to find out if there is anything I can do, but apparently once you get rejected by your insurance company, your surgeon refuses to call you back to discuss things.

Update tomorrow coming.  I haven’t done too much to the house since I last wrote, as we had a visitor over one of the two weekends, but I took a few pictures and will share them.

Thursday, September 8, 2011

Labor Weekend Weekend Part II

So, when I last wrote, I had removed all of the carpets from the second floor.  What happens to all of these carpets and carpet pads once they’ve been removed?  They get thrown away to rot in a landfill for the next seventeen hundred years.  Go Earth!

The reason that I tore out the carpets over the weekend was because the City of Austin was starting curbside pickup of bulk items.  I had spent the week before trying to find out if 750 square feet of carpet would be too bulky to be considered for bulk pick-up, and found out that the City of Austin would be happy to swing by and dispose of all of that garbage.  Awesome.

Not awesome?  Dragging it all to the curb.  Here’s the pile of garbage that came out of this fun project (and the living room project):


I sweat a lot.  A fun thing I learned?  When lugging hundreds of pounds of awkward tubes of carpet  thirty feet to the curb, it’s a good idea to wear long sleeves.  I was in short sleeves.  Here’s what one of my arms looked like afterwards:


That’s either from rough, scratchy undersides of carpeting or some flesh eating thing.  I still have forearm skin, so it’s probably a few tens of scratches from the undersides of discarded carpeting.

I have since healed.

Also done during the weekend, with the help of Amanda and her super brain:


There is not one good looking ceiling fan in the entire world.  Why is that?

Fun fact from the dismantling of an old and mantling of a new ceiling fan: I had to modify the mounting bracket because it was too big for the electrical box.  This thing will come crashing down at some point.  how is that not universal?  Was it universal when the house was built and they have since changed the universe?


Another fun fact: It took a long time to put up (since I had to modify the mounting bracket and kind of ghetto rig it thereafter) the fan.  Once Amanda and I had put it up, I flipped the breakers back on and turned on the fan.  Nothing happened.  I swore many times over and over.  I was preparing to re-wire it when Amanda said, “did you turn the fan itself on?”  I had not.  I turned it one and miraculously, the fan began to spin.

I gave Amanda a wet smooch.  She is a genius.

To wrap it up, yesterday, we got carpets installed.  For four hours yesterday afternoon, horrifying ranchero style music of Mexico was echoing throughout the house.  My blood pressure rose.  I put up with it though, as the folks who were installing the carpet were listening to it.  Here are some of the results:


It was also put in the office and Mr. Stotzer’s Bedroom.  I hope he enjoys it.

For the observant among you, you may notice the nice paint-less bald spot on the wall in the upper right of that last picture.  You can clearly see the outer limits of my reach with a paint roller.  It will eventually be painted, I promise.

This might be the last post for a little while, as I am having my ruined right wrist surgically repaired.  Or at least worked on.

Tuesday, September 6, 2011

Labor Weekend Weekend

I labored all weekend, instead of just one of the days of the long weekend.

In this post, I will go over hours and hours of work and make it seem like it didn’t take hours and hours.

Two weekends ago, I started in on the process of putting some baseboard trim up in the living room.  Since I had destroyed it all when I took out the old flooring, the trim was in real need of replacement.  I measured the room and realized that I needed over 80 feet of trim to do the job.  Holy moly.

I bought what I needed, including some paint, and then, painted:


That’s a lot of trim.  Also, the giant deck we purchased along with the house makes a great workshop.

once the trim had two coats of paint and had dried, I got to measuring, cutting and gluing the trim to the bottom of the wall.  Kind of tedious, but overall pretty easy.  Not bad looking when it was finished either:


Admittedly, I kind of slacked two weekends ago.  Although, the trim took awhile, I could have worked harder.

Labor Day Weekend, which ended yesterday, I worked much harder.  The hardest of the hard work, was tearing out the carpets on the stairs, the second floor hallway and the two guest bedrooms.  It was terrible.  To give you an idea of how gross these carpets were, here’s the underside of a carpet that sat within the closet of the guest room.  Please keep in mind while viewing this carpet that it lived in a closet.  A closet.  Please extrapolate after viewing and digesting how gross it was how gross actual higher traffic areas’ carpeting was.  This carpet is in a closet:


That’s in a closet.


So yea.  These carpets were just disgusting.

After tearing out the carpets, I was left with, once again, a better looking carpet pad.  Certainly better looking than the disgusting carpets:


The easiest part of carpet removal, if the builders were cheap, is removing the padding.  You just roll it up.  Non-cheap builders actually glue the padding to the sub-floor, but luckily, 1984 builders were cheap.

Carpet padding rolled up leaves a nice and dirty sub-floor:


Fun sub-flooring quirk:


That’s the floor in the office.  Quite the awesome difference in floor levels.  It’s like a step.  Nice work 1984 builders.

To illustrate further how super gross these carpets, which are luckily removed now, were, I submit this:


Take a look at that hard dirt line at the back of that stair.  The light color is the color that the carpeting used to be.  That filthy, darker hue is what the carpet color actually was (is).  So gross.

Anyways, once I had removed all of the carpeting, it was time to paint the miles and miles of baseboard and door trim throughout the uncarpeted room and hallways.  Pictures to come…