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  • by Janet St. John

Art & Soul Short #50

Break It Down Again

Nothing was wrong with the house, but he wanted to fix it. He worked weekends and evenings—demolishing, framing, patching, and painting. The more he attacked, the more the house became a mishmash. New and old. Wood and plastic. Modern and historically accurate. That’s how she saw it. His wife sighed every time his black pickup truck pulled into the driveway, loaded with lumber, pvc pipe, and tile. One day, he climbed the creaky front porch steps, entered the house, and announced, “Great news!” She thought, promotion, even lottery. “They’re building a Home Depot just a mile away!” She continued to stack pristine white dishes in the original oak cabinet. “Great,” she replied while watching HGTV on the huge flat screen TV above the ornate Victorian fireplace mantel. She wondered who would win this year’s Dream Home, then imagined her newly constructed life, many miles away.

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