Indian summer seems to be this week. The temp today got above 60 and I had to decide the best use of the day. Though I had other things I wanted to do, I admitted that getting the top coat on the front door was the most temperature sensitive chore.
We had saved the leftover white paint from our porch in a gallon milk jug. Why? I don't know, maybe we thought we would be using it within a few months, instead of nearly 3 years later. It held a 3 inch layer of liquid on top of 3 inches of solids. In a milk jug. A paint stick will not work well. No problem, I'll shake it. As I stood over the kitchen sink, my first thought is this is such a workout that Richard Simmons should be singing; then, if J were doing this I would be telling him to take it outside, even though the cap was being held on tightly.
Shaking did get the thin liquid mixed in enough to look white, but not well enough. Out to the shed, where I found a scrap of wood thin enough to fit in the jug neck. That got a little more solids, but I decided I had to cut the top of the jug off, which I did with a handy utility knife (yes, I wiped it off, J). Now I could use the regular paint stirrer, and found a huge chunk was still in the bottom. You know what would work? My potato masher, so back to the house I go. Hmm, would a whisk be better, because I have that one that's rusty and I don't use- no, the masher it is.
Now, if I found J using my potato masher in a paint can I would be outraged. But it worked pretty well, and washed up fine. After 20 minutes of mashing and stirring the curds and whey, I had paint that was almost smooth. Again, the ghost of J was there with me- I would have said holy crap forget about it and use what there is there after 10 minutes max. But, if I were watching J, I would have said he could get it smoother, and the lumps are all the pigment, so I kept on, thinking that geez, I give him a lot of crap. He's an adult, in fact he is 3 years older than I, why don't I trust his judgment? I have my reasons. Let's leave it at that.
Finally the J in my head said it would be alright to let the little stubborn bits that refused to mingle stay in the jug. I poured the rest into a plastic 2 lb. coffee can with a nice handle, thinking probably I should strain this so the big lumps stay behind. But strain it through what? Cheese cloth is what you use for straining, but who has that sitting around. My mother probably, or she would say use an old curtain from the rag bag. Great, now my mom is there with J in my head. What happened to Richard Simmons?
Ready to paint, finally! Aaannnd, the front door is covered with ladybugs! I don't know if this happens in other places, but here in Maine we get a ladybug invasion every October. They crawl into crevices and die. I assume they would die outside too, so I don't know why they do this, but they do. Close the storm windows too late and you'll have a pile of little spotted carcasses in the sill.
So I brush them away warning them not to come back, to no avail. They landed on the wet paint, on me and in the paint can. The good news is that now if anyone questions the lumpy paint, I can say it's the bugs.