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Ripping off the roof

Here comes my nineteenth nervous breakdown.

The roofers arrived at 8 a.m. on Columbus Day to begin tossing blue tarps over my plants. This is it: the job we should have done right decades ago, when we slapped a new layer over our old roof. 


This is the tear-off.


By nine, two trucks had arrived, one with enough plywood to build a small city, another with shingles and rolls of "Elastoflex" membrane base sheets.



  We have also got "Leak Barrier" ice and water armor and a massive crate of "Grip-Rite" colloidal framing nails (which are apparently manufactured in the United Arab Emirates).


Spouse and I realized that we never consulted about any "green" materials or LEED-certified techniques in this job. (Joke.) However, I did pause to wonder what forest our plywood hailed from, and to what landfill  our torn-off roof would be hauled in the cavernous dumpster out front. This is the fog of war, on a bare-bones budget; such concerns must be left to our betters.

Soon, the house shook under vigorous scrapings and hammer-blows. The guys are out there right now, pushing off the four old roof layers with special shovel-like implements, then hammering back all the popped nails in the skeleton underneath. You can see the back of our third-floor ceiling, like a chocolate layer cake of lathe with plaster icing oozing out. Inside, you can glimpse daylight through some cracks in the ceiling. Next, they will lay fresh plywood down. 

Spouse is taking it in optimistic good humor; I feel sort of ill. Whenever the house undergoes radical surgery, I tend to wander restlessly, overeat, and rock rhythmically while standing in one place. I've been doing a lot of all three this morning. So far, none of the guys has fallen clean through the ceiling like the crew did 23 years ago. I'll keep you posted.

Posted on Monday, October 12, 2009 at 12:51PM by Registered CommenterBrenda from Brooklyn | Comments3 Comments

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Reader Comments (3)

Been reading your blog for awhile. I had to write in on this one. We just had our roof replaced this summer and it's definitely unnerving to see people tearing apart your poor old house. Sadly, for the amount of money spent, not one person has come up and admired it. I've gotten more comments from the $3.99 pack of impatients planted in the yard. On the up side though, is the fact that I no longer find my back yard littered with shingles every time the wind blows and I do sleep easier at night. Good Luck!
October 14, 2009 at 11:48AM | Unregistered Commenterkensington gal
Damn! Y'all had a tornado come through or something? Good thing y'all still not living in that trailer.
October 14, 2009 at 02:54PM | Unregistered CommenterRondell Jenkins
By the looks of the torn-off roofs, it seems that this job should have been done a while ago. When taken care properly, a roof could last up to 30 years maximum. Proper installation may also add a year or two to your roof's lifespan. I hope this roof replacement a few a years ago still works fine by now.
→ Elizabeth @ www.roofpromemphis.com
July 2, 2013 at 02:03PM | Unregistered CommenterElizabeth Hoffnung

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