On the Reader-Created Issue: I Gotta Say, You People Are Nuts!
Editor Scott Omelianuk on the Reader-Created Issue
The editor, sifting through reader entries for this issue.
It's nice to know I'll have friends in the asylum.
Maybe not all of you will be there, but let's be honest:
The level of crazy in the stories you sent in for this eighth annual Reader-Created Issue is as impressive as the home-improvement work you've done.
Sure, in my DIY pursuits I have fallen from a ladder, nearly electrocuted myself, shattered a wrist, lost the nail on my great toe, coughed sawdust out of my ears, and spent time in the lockup for an inappropriate relationship with a dumpster.
But you people have let the remodel disease creep into the gray matter in ways that impress even me. Someone normal doesn't go and buy a vintage wooden cruising boat while on vacation because they know back home it'll make an excellent…bed. But Kevin and Mia Madtes did. I mean this kindly, but you need a loose screw (3-inch, coarse-thread, drywall, perhaps) to do that.
And which is crazier: being afraid of heights or being afraid of heights but letting your husband strap you to a scissor lift so you can paint the top story of your house because you're "determined," as Dok Stevens-Dehring was? In another world, that's a plot point in a CSI episode. But I'll tell you what's even crazier: getting up in the dark before work, putting on a headlamp, and grabbing a shovel to plant shrubs. I'm looking at you, Drayton Green, and wondering, Who does that besides grave robbers?
To be honest, maybe the single sensible thing I heard from you guys was Kim Guthrie's genius idea of turning the demo on her place into a weight-loss regimen. Congrats on dropping 20, Kim! Otherwise, DIY dementia was epidemic this year, from those of you who were hospitalized (only to be back at the project days later) to the expectant moms who labored on their remodels till labor kicked in.
Can we agree that the lot of you are just not right in the head, and the place you call home and your family—and, because you've shared your stories with us, the larger family of TOH fans—are better for it? We can, and wouldn't want it any other way.
So thank you, and I'll see you in the padded room. I don't know what we'll do; there probably won't be any DIY, 'cause who's gonna let us have any sharp tools or even hammers? But we can trade stories. Or weave baskets. Yeah, weave baskets into suites of furniture and maybe even the house to go around it...
Until then, check out the whole-house winners of this year's Search for America's Best Remodel. They and the one-room awardees that follow are proof that getting your hands dirty—and, yes, being a little off-balance—can yield truly amazing results.