Man has walked on the moon, plumbed the ocean depths, and invented watches that tell the time in glowing numbers. It was only a matter of time before he overreached himself and tried to do his own home improvements.

Angled piece of wood loosely attached to a badly painted wall.

Skirting board
Length of wood generally located between half an inch and one inch from the floor.

Several planks crudely formed into a shape that might just fit a doorway, given a good kick and unusually low humidity.

Door handle
There was one when you came in. You should have put another on the other side of the door before you closed it.

Masking tape
Useful when people want to see what you’ve done.

Too late.

Gas pipe
Quantum object. It is impossible to know where this is before you have located it with a six-inch nail.

Electric cable
Another nail.

Another nail.

You’ll need a lot of these.

Light switch

Paint roller
You should have taken the blind down.

Drill bit
And a bit more when you’ve worked out where you should have made that hole.

Picture frame
Actually, it looks quite nice just leaning up against the wall.

Floor covering that shrinks when you turn your back.

Parquet floor
Don’t believe what they tell you. It is designed to undulate attractively.


Stripped pine
In fact your overalls are off and you’re weeping uncontrollably.

Spirit level
And asking for help from beyond the grave.

There isn’t one. Once you start, it’s never over.

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Not FOR beginners, but BY beginners…