Tuesday, April 19, 2011

How To Move A Piano By Yourself - A 40 Step Strategy

Sometimes one finds herself alone and wanting to move furniture. Sometimes that furniture is easily moved. Other times it is something that weighs a million pounds. Like, say, a piano. Sometimes one asks her husband to move it for her but he ignores her request and goes back to fiddling around with his old pickup trucks, hoping she'll forget that she asked him. But she doesn't forget and instead plots ways to do it herself when he's at work.

So how does one move a piano by one's self? If you've ever wondered, here is the answer:

Step One: Clear all obstacles out of the way between the piano and it's destination. This may mean you'll have to climb behind where the piano is currently sitting to move a bookshelf. With books on it.  That's ok. Start with moving the books. Contort your body in any way possible to get the shelf cleared off. Then move the bookshelf. If you're thinking the bookshelf weighs too much, just wait till you try to heave that piano. Suddenly the bookshelf will be a lot lighter.

Step Two: Try to move the piano back against the wall where the bookshelf used to be.

Step Three: Realize that the piano weighs a million pounds and you can't budge it, not even a little bit.

Step Four: Get on your hands and knees to see if there are any wheels left on the bottom of the piano.

Step Five: Realize that there are only two wheels remaining. Calculate the probability of gouging the hard wood floors if you ever do succeed in sliding this monster back approximately 4 feet to get to the wall.

Step Six: Drink a Coke and ponder the situation.

Step Seven: Go back and face your demons.

Step Eight: Determine that a nice little square of carpet, placed carpet side to the hardwood floor, would make a nice sliding coaster for underneath the missing wheels, which unfortunately are in the back.

Step Nine: Go on a wild goose chase around the house looking for an old piece of scrap carpet.

Step 10: Find the perfect piece in the attic. Brush the bird poo off of it, cut the two small squares needed and take it downstairs.

Step 11: Notice that the cat is missing. Go looking for her. Find her in the attic and spend 10 minutes trying to herd her back downstairs.

Step 12: Try to lift the piano just enough to get the carpet pieces slid underneath.

Step 13: Remember you can't lift the piano to slide the carpet pieces underneath (it weighs a million pounds.)

Step 14: Go have another sip of Coke and ponder the situation again.

Step 15: Decide that you must jack the piano up to get the carpet squares underneath.

Step 16: Go looking for a jack.  Find one in your car trunk beside the donut tire. Take it back into the house.

Step 17: Look for a piece of wood long and sturdy enough to reach from the top of the jack to a spot high on the back of the piano where such a piece of wood could be propped against.

Step 18: After scavenging around the whole property, come up with a shabby board that looks like it might splinter in two. Decide to use it anyhow.

Step 19: Grimace when the shabby board is about 9 inches too short. Commence looking for a small block of wood to fill the space.

Step 20: Find a discarded chunk of firewood. Shrug and take it in the house.

Step 21: Look warily at the piano, the shabby board, the chunk of wood and the jack.

Step 22: Start jacking.  Set the chunk of wood on the jack and when it gets high enough, add the shabby board and wedge it under the top of the piano.

Step 23: Hide your head around the corner of the piano just incase the shabby board splinters into a gazillion pieces sending wooden shrapnel towards your eyes.

Step 24: Gasp in amazement that the piano is actually lifting.

Step 25: Amazement is short lived as the piano slides forward slightly.

Step 26: Continue jacking with your right arm while your left arm holds the piano from sliding forward anymore. Keep your face hidden around the side, that board is a ticking time bomb.

Step 27: Use the arm that did the jacking to slide the carpet square underneath the missing piano wheel, your left arm is still trying to keep the piano from sliding forward.

Step 28: As you slide your hand and carpet square precariously under the million pound piano supported by a car jack, a block of wood and an unstable board, recall the movie 127 Hours. Start to think of escape strategies just in case. Can the cat bring you the phone? How many hours till your husband comes home to rescue you? Would it be easier to chew your arm off?

Step 29: Breath a sigh of relief when the carpet is in place, the jack is lowered and your hand is still safely attached to you and not trapped under the million pound piano.

Step 30: See step #22 and start there because you still have to jack up the other end of the piano to get the carpet square under THAT side too. (Bummer)

Step 31: Put the car jack back in the trunk. Return all wooden materials to wherever you found them.

Step 32: Have a talk with the piano. Explain to it that if it slides back against the wall you will be able to make the room around it beautiful again and people will want to actually go in that room instead of avoid it. Remind it that it is made of wood, just like the floors so we should all try to get along and not scratch each other.

Step 33: Be thankful no one heard you giving the floor and piano a pep talk.

Step 34: Grit your teeth and lift as much as you can possibly lift a million pound piano while trying to slide it backwards.

Step 35: Forget about the slippery spot on the floor caused by dusting and spraying Pledge all morning long. Fall down a little bit.

Step 36: Try again but without standing on the Pledge spot. Do a Happy Dance when the piano actually moves back!

Step 37: Slip on the Pledge spot while doing the Happy Dance.

Step 38: Move the other side of the piano back. (No Pledge spot on that end of the piano to contend with, dance as much as you want.)

Step 39: Inspect the floors for gouges. Find none. Do another Happy Dance.

Step 40: Realize that now that you've moved a million pound piano by yourself, your husband will never, ever, ever help you move anything else. Curse silently at this unexpected turn of events.

1 comment:

Mike said...

O Kelly, Amy has got to read this!!