safety equipmentFor years, DIY meant making little curtains, slip covering a few pillows, slobbering over paint colors. The fun and easy stuff.  Now it’s all about vise grips, power tools, respirators, sanders, and a little screaming and crying.

Everybody I talked to said that scraping a popcorn ceiling was simple if you sprayed it with water first. Everybody. The same everybody suggested I use a pump sprayer to get the job done faster, and to cover the whole floor with plastic. That last bit about the plastic saved me from having to file an insurance claim for damage done by gravity.

It didn’t take much muscle to scrape gobs of wet slush off the ceiling but gravity proved to be the real monster. The whole room turned into a squishy marsh.  I had so much sticky slush stuck to the bottom of my clogs that I finally worked barefoot.  (Now I understand why the guy at the paint store said he did his ceilings nearly naked.) The most frustrating thing was the pump sprayers. The hoses were too short to reach the ceiling so I had to lug the jug up the ladder, spray, lug the jug down, move the ladder, lug the jug up, and spray again. Then both sprayers failed, each in turn. One of them blew a valve and sprayed pressurized water all over the room and, no I didn’t cover the walls in plastic. By that time, I was so annoyed with the whole process that I dragged the garden hose through the house, turned it on “mist” and sprayed the whole ceiling in less than minute. Jim wasn’t home so he never saw the hose snaking through the house. This oversight on his part saved him from a moment of terror.

Dummies do things differently and I would definitely recommend the garden hose over a pump sprayer, and working completely naked other than a respirator. Update. I finished this room having done everything right, sanding, spackling, repairing dings everywhere. The walls were beautiful. Half an hour after I declared the room finished, the ladder fell over and punched a hole in the wall then, a curtain rod fell on my head.