Do you assume he means:
a) have you gone and stood in the place where the piece of furniture is to go, got a tape measure out and measured the space
b) have you worked out some form of simultaneous or quadratic equation involving length, breadth and height, applied Pythagorus' theorem, thrown in a few logarithms, multiplied the whole lot by 3.142 and taken away the number you first thought of?
I thought so.
Let me explain.
A week ago, I was strolling through the antique market when I spied the perfect chest of drawers for my bedroom. I should point out here that my bedroom is in the loft, reached by the continuation of the main staircase onto the top floor. Admittedly, there is a slight turn in the staircase, but as I don't buy bedroom furniture very often, I don't usually think about it.
Anyway, my beautiful chest of drawers was duly delivered and was left in the hall, where it stood waiting patiently for the Father of This Lot to arrive, take one look at it and announce:
'That won't fit in the loft'
I ignored his comment, mainly due to the fact that I had measured said chest of drawers, stood in the loft and measured the space. There was acres of room.
Anyway, yesterday, The Fixer and I found ourselves at a loose end and decided that we would 'do it ourselves'. We took all the drawers out, lifted the frame onto the loft stairs....and got stuck.
There were various shouts of
'Back a bit'
'To me, to me'
and more than once
'Ow, mum, geddit off me foot'
before we finally admitted defeat.
Unfazed by this, I said:
'Never mind kiddo. Your father will do it tomorrow. He is fantastic at getting things round corners'.
Because he is.
So when he arrived today, he was despatched to the landing to move the drawers. He said:
'I knew when I first saw that thing that it wouldn't go in the loft. But...just to keep you happy....'
It wouldn't go in the loft. He started going on about angles and other boring stuff, and I may have been heard to mutter something along the lines of:
'If the landlady at the Mare and Foal asked you I bet you'd get it in the loft'
To which he replied:
'If the Angel Gabriel came down and asked me, I couldn't get that thing in the loft. The only way that will go up there is if you cut it in half'.
The Fixer and I looked at each other. Without a word, she knew I was giving her the nod to go and get her father's chainsaw from the garage. Sadly the Father of This Lot knows us only too well and said:
'Don't even think about it. And don't ask me if I know anyone who can take the bannister out either, 'cos it'll cost about three hundred quid to put back'.
Damn. That was going to be my next question.
So, I had to admit defeat. Can you imagine my distress?
Obviously, it couldn't stay on the landing, so I had to put my beautiful chest of drawers in.....The Singer's bedroom, a nightmare of a place if ever you saw one, where it now rests, surrounded by David Tennant posters and housing a purple portable television on its beautifully polished top.
I could spit.
If I weren't a finds-joy-in-all-circumstances, unselfish, generous-to-a-fault-with-my-furniture Catholic mother, that is.