Tag Archives: drainage map of the US

Map of the (Water) World

Since I’m out a camera this week I’m employing a reverse technique for posting. Usually I write what I want, then take a picture based on the subject matter. Today, instead, I’ve started with an image I already had–one I took some weeks ago–and tacked on the appropriate words. Is it what I feel like writing about? Not particularly. Is it something I have a usable shot of? Yes.

Voila. Decision made.

But really, it’s for the best. I’ve been intending to write this post forever. I need to write it. It’s my moral duty. For it’s a bit of a mea culpa, you see, to Michael’s. The store. The chain store. The overwhelming, coupon-spewing, made-in-China, filled with cheap crap, in every strip-mall, lines so long you want to hang yourself chain store.

Ahem. I beg your pardon. This isn’t sounding like an apology at all. Let me re-start.

You may remember some time back I left a picture to be framed at Michael’s. Embarrassment ensued. Shame, even. Profound chagrin at the amount of money that had been extorted from me. Regret, an attempt to cancel the order–heck, ashes on my face, the pulling out of hair, the rending of my clothing–it all basically followed. But the order could not be cancelled. The deed was done. The nearly $600 deed. My annoyance at Michael’s–and myself–knew no bounds.

Follow-through not being my strong suit, I never got back to you with the outcome. I’m sorry. That’s a character flaw. I love discussing my problems. Less interesting: recounting the resolutions. In short, it’s taken my camera being nabbed for me to finally get around to telling the end of the story, thereby offering you all some closure. I know you’ve waited. I know you’ve suffered. I know you’ve spent countless hours sobbing on therapists’ couches…

Mea culpa, readers.

Seriously. Turns out my framing debacle wasn’t such a debacle after all. The picture in question–a drainage map of the United States–actually came back looking pretty good. Oh, there are glare issues. I don’t love the faux aging of the wood. I doubt it even is wood. But all in all, once the thing was up, it added to the living room. My biggest remaining questions were what the hell is a drainage map? And what is one doing on my living room wall? But those were largely rhetorical. And meant solely for my husband.

All I am left with is the sticker shock. I still think the job was shockingly overpriced. A few months down the line, with Mike’s hiatus looming closer and closer, I’d never consider paying $575 for a frame. But we were flush back then, and flush folk make financial fools. (Like the alliteration? I just did that.)

Given the same situation now? I’d make the frame myself out of sticks, poster paint, and glue. And plexiglass. Glare-proof, of course. I’m sure you can buy all of that at Michael’s. And for a fraction of the price.

As it is, we’ve got what we’ve got.

And if you’ve got drainage questions? Turns out I’m your girl.



This afternoon — late — I tried to call Michael’s to cancel my order. I decided I would, after all, rather have a new dishwasher than a beautiful but badly framed picture for our living room wall. Especially as our old Gaffers and Sattler started emanating something that smelled suspiciously like woodsmoke yesterday.

Unfortunately, the man I spoke to in the framing department said it was too late. The deed was done. The picture had just left “the warehouse” an hour ago. Warehouse? What kind of Kafkaesque nightmare have I sent our cartographic gem into?

Sob. Goodbye $560. Goodbye self-respect. Goodbye new, mid-range dishwasher. Hello, tackily framed drainage map with ugly faux-glass cover. Or that’s my fear, anyway.

The only good news? It was woodsmoke. In the dishwasher. I found a wooden spoon trapped near the motor there this morning. It’s fried, but the dishwasher lives on.

It had better. At this rate it’ll need to last another 50 years.