Wait! Don’t change the channel just yet! It’s not how it sounds. I don’t mean I rock in the whole “yeah, I know it, I rock” sense of the phrase. That would be vain, and they didn’t write the song about me. Honk if you get it.
No, I don’t mean I rock all the time, I mean that I can RAWK (?) on occasion. We’re talking music here. Rock, roll, the works. I’m trying, in my standard long-winded fashion, to tell you about my night last night. My whole day in fact. Because you’ve been wondering about that. Right?
So, my son AJ is a huge metal fan.
His favorite band is a Christian band that goes by the name of Disciple. I think they have some form of advanced communication enabled, similar to my RSS feed, that lets him know exactly what Disciple is doing at any given moment. So when they scheduled three concerts in Florida he knew it. And then I knew it.
We picked the show in Vero Beach, obviously because it was near a beach, and got our tickets. AJ and I left bright and early yesterday for the three hour drive to Vero. We wanted to be sure that we were there in plenty of time for the 7:00pm show. We made it with time to spare.
I won’t bore you with all the details of our day. It was great and involved body surfing some HUGE waves, catching a movie at a beautiful theater called The Majestic, and getting in-line for the concert at 4:30, ensuring us front row seats for the general admission show. Did I mention it didn’t start until 7pm ?
(I’m getting to some remodeling stuff, I promise…)
There were three bands and the show started right on time at 7:00. That was the last I saw of my seat. It faded away behind four deep teenagers in the two feet of space between the stage and the chairs. Don’t ask me how they fit? They did, and apparently they felt like there was plenty of wiggle room because they proceeded to jump, and flail, and otherwise act out the joy coursing through them.
There were speakers. Let me give this to you in remodeling terms. Imagine two Sub-Zero’s on top of one another. They were about six feet from my head. And a stack of twenty wine cooler size speakers were hanging from the ceiling. But they weren’t wine coolers. Nope. So when I say the joy was coursing through them, I mean it.
So there I was (paperback novel in my pocket in preparation for the potential retreat that never came) on the front row, right on the stage, trying to “blend“…yeah, right, like THAT is going to happen. It was fun. Really, it was.
Kids Are Energy
Whew, you made it to the remodeling part. I woke up this morning thinking of all the room additions I’ve built as hang-out’s for kids. Parents all over are building room additions just to keep the kids at their house where they can see them. They fill these rooms with cool home theaters, pool tables, video games, and bean bags. I’ve built dozens of them.
But I realized this morning that I should have reinforced them! These kids are like little tanks! They can destroy! I started thinking of what I would do if I wanted to “teenager-proof” a room. Here is the list I came up with…
Door Casing – Kids just kill the doors! What is that? So I would need to make sure that my door casing couldn’t be pulled off. That would mean an extra stud behind my door casing when I did framing, so that way it could be nailed solid on both the inside and the outside edge. I’d use glue too.
Solid Core Doors – Forget these puny hollow core doors. Any respectable group of teenagers will make mince meat of that in no time flat. You would need solid doors. Either solid wood or LDF (Low Density Fiber-board).
Light Fixtures – Lighting is important, you might need it for impromptu first aid. Fixtures should be mounted, up-high. Forget the lamps, they’ll never make it.
Walls – I’m thinking solid wood up two-thirds of the wall. A wainscot type look with a nice cap rail on top. It looks great but is indestructible. You could do drywall, but you’ll need this post on drywall repair.
Paint – Let’s be serious. I have to tell my son five times in one two sentence conversation to “stop hanging on the door”. He touches everything and despite the energetic bouncing I saw at the concert, teenagers apparently need bodily support from walls and doorways most of the time. So the paint needs to be very durable, and washable, and while you’re at it, I say go with a distressed look that way you don’t care when they take a chunk out of the wainscot in some completely unforeseeable way.
Floors – Stained concrete? If that’s too cold, then I would go with either a solid 3/4″ thick nailed down hardwood floor, finished in-place, or a laminate flooring like Pergo. You’ve seen the demonstrations where they smack it with the hammer right? There you go.
Windows – no windows.
So there you have it. The story of my wonderful day with my son, the huge metal fan, and some tips on how to design your remodeling project to be teenager proof. I wish I could go back in time, I’d be selling wainscot and solid core doors leftswing and rightswing. Contractors take notice…change order money here!
I’d love to hear some “my teenager destroyed my house” stories, just NOT FROM YOU MOM!