Thursday, October 16, 2008

100th Post - Live-Blogging the Piano Arrival / Construction

I don't know if this is really my 100th post or not, but Blogger says it is. Wow, that seems like a lot.

Anyway, today is the day our new Casio Ap-200 is supposed to arrive from Kraft Music. Sue has taken Jason, Rowan, and Joseph "to town", so while it's just me at home right now, Jillian will be joining me shortly. It will then be the two of us putting the piano together, and taking it through its first paces.

The delivery company called yesterday afternoon to say it would be delivered today between 3:00 and 7:00. Inspired as I am by the myriad of bloggers* who kept a running commentary on last night's debate, I thought it might be fun to live blog the event. And if I am wrong about that, this will be the only time I try this.

* - I think it's ironic that a, "bloggers" is flagged as a misspelled word.

3:00 PM - Not here yet.
3:01 PM - Not here yet.
3:02 PM - This is going to be a long afternoon if I keep this up. Going back to work now, I'll let you know when it gets here.
3:10 PM - I don't blame you if you don't believe this, but it's here. The doorbell rang, and when I answered it, there were two gentlemen and three boxes. The smaller one spoke to me:

"Where you want these boxes?"
(Inspects the bill of shipment. Shows it to me. ) "Says here to leave it at the front door."
"Then why did you ask me where I wanted it?"
(Pauses, looks around. Then...) "Where around the front door do you want it?"
"Inside please."

It wasn't even that pleasant, to tell the truth. Anyhow, here is my piano. This is where it must remain, as I am about to go outside and pick up Jillian from the bus stop.

3:15 - It occurs to me that it's been awhile since you've seen the yard. The grass has come a long way. I'll post some Fall pics soon.*

* - Wow, aw2pp is gonna be a busy place these next few days. Wake the children! Alert the friends and neighbors!

3:25 - Jillian's bus arrives. She bursts into tears at learning it's just me and her. And I have a customer call beginning in five minutes.

3:30 - (Puts on customer face and voice.)

3:50 - Phone rings. Jillian answers. A moment later, she comes in and asks if she can go across the street. Great, now who is going to help me with this 122 lb. box?

You're home alone, you wish to move this box upstairs... and then you see this printed on the box.

4:15 - Call over, work day is done, now it's time to put this thing together. Since we moved, I now have no idea where my tools (such as they are) are. Before she left, I asked Sue where a screwdriver was. She said something along the lines of "Upper left in the tic-tac-toe board." By that, she meant a built-in bookshelf in our upstairs hallway. How does she keep up with all this?

4:16 - I'll be darned, there it is, right where she said it would be. I shouldn't be surprised. She's got a gift for finding and keeping track of things, Sue does. Good thing, because this is a real challenge for me sometimes.

4:20 - You know, I can always unpack the box and bring components up piecemeal...

4:25 - Next tool challenge: Opening the boxes. I really don't know where anything is in this house. My kingdom for a pair of scissors! Or a utility knife!

4:29 - ... or a standard (flat-head) screwdriver! Found one of those in Sue's Lauffice.*

* - Laundry Room + Office = Lauffice. Sue's second favorite room** in the house.
** - In first place, the Mud Room.

4:35 - The instructions specifically tell me that I am supposed to keep the boxes and packing materials. The reasoning behind this is that I may have to return the piano if it is broken or damaged in transit. This concerns me. Partly because I don't want to have to return my piano, I hope it's in perfect working order. But more than that, you should see the packing materials. Modern Marvels should do an episode on how they get everything in there.

Yeah, I am going to remember what went where. Totally.

4:40 - Just moved the keyboard itself upstairs. Wow, is that thing heavy! I could use a heart rate monitor about right now. Anyway, time to look at the instructions. Next post might be awhile.

4:51 - "Caution: Assembly of the stand should be performed by at least two people working together."

5:10 - That looks about right. Somehow or other, I failed to capture a picture of the footpedal board attached upside down... let's just pretend that never happened, shall we? Agreed. Moving on.

5:15 - Wait, why am I doing this in silence? And why I am doing this without beer? (Goes downstairs to get the iPod... beer must wait.)

5:18 - Jillian is back home and wants to help."Sure, Jill, can you liveblog for me? I'm getting behind." She decides against this, and composes something for her own blog. (I haven't mentioned that, have I? Yes, our six year old has her own blog. She LOVES comments. Just sayin'.)

5:25 - "Lift the piano onto the stand." Uh oh.

5:30 - How's that look?

5:35 - "No, Jillian, I need to put the bench together, hold on."

Ah, never mind, knock yourself out. I'm sure that technique will fly with that new teacher we now need to find for you.

5:36 - Einaudi queues up randomly on the iPod, which is now losing the fight with Jillian's piano tinkering for supremacy. Hmm, what box are those headphones in?

Here you go, Jill, try these on.

5:40 - I was right, the first piece played on our new piano is the piece Jillian composed herself.

5:45 - "Jillian, can I put that on my blog? I'm going to need to know what you call that song."
"It's called The Dance of the Unicorns', because when Unicorns dance, they bounce around, like this..." (She makes hand motions of large, bounding leaps.) "And the music sort of bounces that way, too, see?" (She makes the same motions, only this time hums the music along with it.)

5:50 - What? The desk lamp doesn't come with a bulb? Cheapskates. At least the shipping was free.

5:55 - I still haven't played it, but I am hungry. It's pizza time. I'll check back with you later.

7:30 - Pizza was good, and we have 30 minutes to kill before Total Drama Island.* It's piano time!

* - I can't believe we let our children watch this show. I mean, I understand what's funny about it... but I don't understand what Jill and Jay see in it. The target audience is years beyond them. On the other hand, I'll be darned if I am going to let them watch without me, so I can filter what they're seeing. Some things need be properly translated, you know.

8:00 - Time to make use of the key cover and shut down for now. First impression: I have lost quite a bit of ability in the last 6 weeks or so. What's more, there were some irregularities between the key actions on our old upright that had become familiar. I could sort of identify keys by how they felt, by how they varied in height and action weight. Not so with this new piano. Everything is uniform. It's going to take awhile for me to relearn my way around.

Second impression: headphones are comfortable, but perhaps a little weak. They come with a 1'8" input plug and a 1/4" adapter to connect to the piano. I wonder if more substantial headphones might make a difference?

Ok, it's already bedtime. Later all. Hope you had fun with this.


sawtooth said...

Looks nice. I hope it gets to see a lot of use. It is hard to tell the scale of these packages from the pictures but I know just how big they are.

Of course, my package wasn't so quite as heavy as that one was.

It took less time than I expected to transition from my unweighted 61 key model to the weighted 88 key version so hopefully you can become comfortable with the nice new piano quickly.

Anonymous said...

Nice! You did well, putting it all together. If for some reason, you do need to repack it, call me. I used to work in replenishment, so unpacking/repacking was part of the job! LOL

As for the transition, just give it a bit of time. I used to have trouble going back and forth between the upright and the digital. Now, I can move from one to the other in the same practice session with only a short bit of "re-acquainting."

I'm sure you will all enjoy it for a long time!