THE DIARY OF A GEEK IN OXFORDSHIRE


Solving the World's problems with common sense and a flamethrower.

Monday, April 14, 2008

The Worst Words in the World

They are, quite frankly, the worst three words in the world. The ones I dread seeing more than any other.

Some. Assembly. Required.

What really *bugs* me about this phrase is the word 'some'. 'Some' implies that the object under construction is at least partially assembled, and that a few tweaks and some nifty quick work with a screwdriver will produce a gleaming, completed device, allowing you to bask in the glow of your awesome DIY skillz.

This, however, is a triumph of hope over experience.

What 'Some Assembly Required' actually means is this:
  • A bunch of disparate bits, all unlabeled.
  • An instruction manual with the same number of steps as would be required to construct the Space Shuttle.
  • Said manual drawn by a skilled artist who was, sadly, suffering either Parkinsons Disease or Delerium Tremens at the time he wrote it.
  • The obligatory bag of screws, nuts and bolts, including several that aren't on the parts list and don't feature *anywhere* in the instruction manual.
So it was that with some trepidation, I approached the box containing the 'Adelaide 4-burner Gas Barbeque'. The sun was shining high in the sky as I opened the box, noting the dreaded words 'Some Assembly Required'.

This thing had over 100 separate parts, and a 40-step construction guide. I was doing well all the way to step 6 - when I realised that I'd got the (unmarked) legs in the wrong places, so had to dismantle the whole lot completely and start again from scratch.

I have a Potty Mouth, so you can imagine the Anglo-Saxon vernacular at this point. It even scared the cat.

I even had to wire up the bloody ignition circuit.

And I had to stop three times. Twice for rain, and once because hailstones were bouncing off my head. Not pleasant.

In the end, though, after 5 hours of fiddling, swearing and skinned knuckles, I stood back and admired my new 'man-cooker'...

Testing it was bloody scary, I have to say. Much sniffing and wet-checks for leaks, then there was no option but to turn the gas on, and press the Big Red Button.

I'm typing this, and I still have my eyebrows, so I guess that's a positive.

I'm now basking in the glow of my awesome DIY skillz, and a full-on test is scheduled for tonight, weather permitting.

So - if my most-dreaded words are 'Some Assembly Required', what are yours?

2 comments:

Brother Tobias said...

'We need someone to give a talk' used to do it for me. Or from a dentist, 'Hmm.'

carseycritter said...

Both of mine are work related.

The first...
"So-and-so from (the next) shift is on the phone for the supervisor."

Since our job requires "a body in the seat" with minimums, that means someone is usually staying for overtime.

The 2nd...
"I had a car..."
This is the usually the start of some long-winded story about dumbass #1 who gave/sold/loaned their car to dumbass #2, who didn't appreciate/pay/give it back. *sigh* Call a lawyer. The police can't help ya.