Stripes

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Status: Finished  |  Genre: Flash Fiction  |  House: Booksie Classic
A quick paint job turns out to be not quite so quick!

Submitted: March 13, 2017

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Submitted: March 13, 2017

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Stripes

 

Now it had seemed like a good idea at the time. A nice gesture! She said she needed some help with the decorating and I thought – why not? After all, I had nothing better to do at the time.

 

She would supply the paint and the paint brushes, the rollers and the trays. She’d even find me some old sheets to use as dust covers. All I needed to do was turn up with myself and my step ladder. There might even be a bit of beer money to be made!

 

So, 9 o’clock on a Monday morning, there I was knocking at her door. She showed me in to her living room and showed me the pots of paint. Two colors, bright yellow and white! Fair enough, I just needed to know which walls she wanted in which color and I’d be flying. While I waited for her to return, I set about laying the sheets on top of the carpet, and covering any furniture that might be in splatter range.

 

She’s still not back so I’ll just get myself a bit sorted out. I’ve got me overalls on, keep me old jeans from becoming multi-colored.

 

Ah, here she is, so I’ll ask quickly, just in case she’s on her way out and do yer know what she says to me? Stripes! She wants all the walls painted in equal and alternating stripes!

 

I suggest that maybe wall-paper might be a better choice if it’s stripes she’s after, but ‘no,’ she says, she wants it done in paint. If I really don’t think I can do it, she’ll just have to get someone else.

 

Well, what could I say to that! I was not going to say that it was too advanced a job for me. No Way! So I’ll pour out a tray of white and a tray of yellow. The stripes will be roller-width. And I’m going to start with yellow.

 

Up the ladder I go, and very slowly and carefully start moving it downwards. I’ve got to keep it going in a straight line, right down to the floor. Then back up the ladder, different paint tray, different roller, different color......But the same old process. Keep it straight.

 

It is so slow-going, all this switching around, back and forth. It takes me the time I thought the whole job would take to complete just one wall. And there’s still three more left to do.

 

By the time I finish I can no longer see straight. I have lines in front of my eyes. I stand there and inspect my work, and yeah, it does look like those lines are pretty much straight.

 

So why does she look so horrified. So shocked.

 

I’m so sorry,” she said. “I gave you the wrong colors. Yellow’s for the kitchen. It should be red and white in here.”

 

Oh, well. Looks like I’ll be seeing stripes again tomorrow!


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