Installing a silly extra socket for almost no reason…

But first…
Dulltown, UK: Today’s Victorian English expletive is ‘ruddy!’. One of the most frowned upon expletives of that time was, for some reason, the word ‘bloody’ – I don’t think it was upsetting for what it actually meant, but because of the powerful syllables it contained; it was the lip-smacking ‘bl’ combination and those lascivious lingering ‘o’s that made it so popular with the uncouth lower classes. ‘Ruddy’ is a trimmed down version of the B-word which was just about acceptable in more polite society.
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Now then, ouch!… Why are my thighs aching this morning?
Ah, it must be all that crouching and kneeling I was doing yesterday…
Dear reader, this could be a rather long and involved post – do get strapped in and make yourself comfortable.

This all started a few days ago as I was standing at my drawing table doing the ‘inking around’ procedure on one of my recent spatter paintings. (spatter) I had some music playing (beaty 1990s dance music actually) on my hi-fi as I worked. I had the thought that it might be a good idea to move my loudspeakers from the other side of the room (behind me) and have them instead in the corners at each side of my drawing table; I usually only have music playing when I’m drawing, and it’s a bit odd having the sound coming from behind one. Moving them would be a very satisfying little project, and it would also clear a bit of space each side of the fireplace.
The speakers are large and old and very good quality; they are ex-BBC outside broadcast monitors I think from the 1970s or 1980s, probably made by Spendor. Moving them was easy, but getting the wiring from the hi-fi to them meant taking up a row of carpet tiles across the floor and cutting out strips from the soft fibreboard underlay to accommodate the cables. It was a good day’s work and I felt a sense of satisfaction when it was done – oh, and the speakers sounded much better in their new positions – it’s good to have an idea for a project, and do some physical work on it, and then see it finished – it does lift one’s spirits…
The trouble was, that in the their original positions the speakers had things sitting on them: a surrealist table lamp with bosoms, the TV Freeview box, a Blu-ray player, another table lamp in the shape of Buddha with flickering orange bulb on his head, a notepad and pen, my landline telephone, and the internet router.
Aha!… Another project! Oh goody!… I’ll make a new single ‘unit’ to stand all this stuff on!
Then, two or three days faffing about in my little workshop happily slicing up some leftover sheets of 18mm medium density fibreboard that I had lying around, some glue, panel pins, two or three coats of Wilko’s blackboard paint, four swivelling castors on the bottom for ease of movement, should the thing ever need to be moved for any reason – I had the castors anyway. There it’s done! How very satisfying! Isn’t life great?… The surreal bosomy table lamp looks super sitting there on that! (By the way, she’s a headless upper body manikin from a 1970s ladies’ dress shop converted into a lamp.) Being busy like this is really quite addictive – I do like being occupied with practical things, what can I do next?…
You know, I have often thought of having another electric socket on the wall over there – I’m not keen on the position of that one, I don’t like the way the black lead from the electric pencil sharpener drapes across to it like that… Perhaps I should install another double socket a few feet to the right of it – that would be much neater looking…
Dave!… It’s fine as it is! You don’t need another socket. Think of all the work and bother: taking the carpet tiles up, and the underlay, and, then you’d have to try to get a bloody floorboard up, and chisel a hole in the wall to accommodate the metal box for the socket! It’s a ridiculous idea – don’t even think of doing it – go into town instead, go sit in a cafe and drink tea, and write something… Alright?…
Yes, you are quite right, it’s a silly idea – what a total waste of time it would be…

About Dave Whatt

Grumpy old surrealist artist, musician, postcard maker, bluesman, theatre set designer, and debonair man-about-town. My favourite tools are the plectrum and the pencil...
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12 Responses to Installing a silly extra socket for almost no reason…

  1. Now, all I got from this was that you have a Buddha with an orange lightbulb on his head….thats really quite hilarious (although its sacrilege for all Buddhists, mind you) And I think your new double socket looks marvellous! 🙂

    • Dave Whatt says:

      I’m still waiting for the filler round the edges of the new socket to harden…
      I think Buddha would smile at my lamp. By the way, I didn’t make it – it is a bought one from a junk shop.
      Just thinking… I reckon Buddhism (and the Zen variety in particular) is the only religion I can think of that has a little bit of humour involved…

      • Well of course they do – nobody else’s religion asks you to clap with one hand….! 😀

      • Dave Whatt says:

        After I replied to your last thingy, I realised that I had got something completely wrong in my post and in my reply to you – the glowing bulb isn’t on Buddha’s head at all, he’s sitting beneath a square pillar [which looks a little bit like a candle] the light bulb is on top of that.
        Phew, glad to have got that off my mind!…

  2. We have external trunking in our flat. Drives him ballistic. Has he chased it out yet? Got a few hours spare Dave?

  3. Jheron Bash says:

    There’s no holding you, is there Dave? I think we need a picture of the new unit with all its stuff on though! I’m sure your many readers would agree.

    • Dave Whatt says:

      Well, my dear Jheron, I did think of it, but visually it’s not that interesting – mind you the bosomy table lamp might amuse – I’ll think about it…

  4. parkartist says:

    Ha ha, I know the feeling of starting one small job and ending up reorganising the universe!

  5. ktz2 says:

    Oh Dave. . .you just make me laugh every time, with your specific droll humor. I especially like the work-photo with every tool you have brought out. . is that a hatchet by the gaping hole in the floor. . ? hahahah

    • Dave Whatt says:

      Sort of… That tool is, I believe, called a ‘packing hammer’ – axe one side, hammer on the other, and a nail puller on the end – I once found it in the middle of a road at dead of night on the way home from a pub.
      They are for use on wooden crates, but are quite good for lifting floorboards too.
      Thank you for your encouragement Kate!

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