LaughLines: Renovation Nation: Too Good for Granite?

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The holidays will soon be upon us, which means it’s time for my husband to tear the house apart.

Matt has decided we need a new kitchen (we don’t really — we just need to clean the old one occasionally) so he’s decided to spearhead the project.

His main focus is new counters and, of course, granite is his counter of choice. Why? Because it comes in more colors? No. Because it cleans up easily? No. Because it’s what the cavemen used? No again. Even the cavemen knew that most caves didn’t need the most expensive rock on the block.

Matt wants granite because it’s “high end” and it’ll add to the resale value of the house. Are we selling? No. Ever? Probably not, but that doesn’t mean that Matt wants to “go cheap” when it comes to kitchen counters.

My main argument against granite counters is that our house doesn’t deserve them. It’s not a granite counter kind of house, if you get my meaning. Our house has chipped molding and rugs stained by dog pee and cobwebs in the skylights and, oh yes, a cracked toilet seat that forces me to lean on one cheek every time the urge hits.

Our house is filled with furniture I found curbside. Its walls have thousands of nail holes, every frame hiding the evidence proving my reputation as a non-measurer — don’t forget the squeaky floors and leaking hallway ceiling. We have windows that won’t open and doors that won’t close. And Matt wants to go upscale in this hell-hole with granite??

Forget the house’s unworthiness – WE don’t deserve granite. I don’t drive a BMW, a Saab, an Audi, or, god forbid, a Volvo. I drive a nine-year-old Honda that runs great despite the fact the air bags went on hiatus a couple of years ago when the SRS brain died. We only occasionally eat organic, my husband trims my hair, the kids go to public school and we sometimes shop at Wal-Mart (not for clothes, of course — you can only own so many howling wolves t-shirts, after all).

Despite all this, Matt is hell-bent on granite, so this weekend, we’ll be meeting with the granite guy to look at a few hundred granite blocks to decide what color and pattern we want to look at and pay for for the rest of our lives.

I’m just hoping that Matt will take one look at the estimate and realize he had rocks (non-granite, of course) in his head when he agreed to granite. In the meantime, I’m thinking of ways to cover the cost of this extravagance.

Can’t sell the car (too old) or internal organs (same problem). Maybe Wal-Mart is hiring holiday temps? I’ll be spending a lot more time there anyway.

About Cate Drew

I’m on the high side of 40, with three dogs, two teens and one husband, living in a small New England town in a house that’s never quiet. Ever. It’s not that I have a really colorful life – I just tend to write colorfully about it. And there’s plenty of material: marriage to the Man of a Thousand Bad Ideas,.. my mom, who moved Dad’s coffin closer to the street six months after he died so she could visit his grave as a kind of drive-up window…our dog posse…our kids…lots of siblings and in-laws, former co-workers, old boyfriends -- they’re all here. Toss in 14 years of Catholic school and you’ve got a lot of guilt, too. Which reminds me: forget “high side of 40.” I’m 51, damnit.