Happy Freakin’ Ground Hog Day

Summer 2012…

John: Argghhhhh!!!!! Shelley! Look at the deck! The “The Guaranteed to Last Stain” is peeling off for the second year in a row. What are we going to do?

This spring…

Shelley: Not again? Curse you, you crummy, no good for nothing, useless “New and Improved Guaranteed to Last” stain. Happy freakin’ Ground Hog Day!


As the well meaning advice begins to pour in, yet again, starting with my female neighbour on our right,

“Why don’t you throw a rattan area rug over it?” and from a good buddy,

“I’ve been thinking, you need to start all over again, strip and prime with just an oil.”

I decided I might as well repost last year’s blog. Apologies to those who have already read this. But on the other hand, imagine how we feel…


Shelley: That’s it. I’m so done with that stupid deck. Let’s put ceramic tiles on it, like Shannon (sister) did.

Dad: Jeez. That’s too bad. Maybe you’ll have to restain the whole thing.


Mom: No. Just paint where it’s flaking off.

Clerk #1: Not a clue. Sorry, can’t help you.

Shenley (brother): Hmmm…. while I think about it, know that you can use my belt sander, my hand sander, my high pressure water hose, my work horses, my electric drill, my battery drill…


Clerk #2: Vancouver Island BC weather on wooden decks. Sucks eh?

Mom: Cover it with an indoor outdoor carpet.


Clerk #3: A sander should do it. But, not the industrial belt sander. The nails will rip the belt and that will cost you to replace. What you need is an oscillating sander. We don’t have those.

Clerk #4: Sorry, all out of oscillating sanders. Deck season.

Mom: Outdoor rubber flooring.

Clerk #5: Do not use a sander. It will take off the treated layer and then you’ll have prime it.

Dan (Nephew): I built most of that deck. By the way, I don’t think I was paid enough.


Tyler( Dan’s brother): You were paid!?!?! Why didn’t anyone ask me to help? I would have helped.

Clerk #6: Try a high pressure water hose. 

Customer in Clerk #6″s store: Buy stain stripper, a brush and use a water pressure hose to remove what’s left. Then paint it with BEHR SOLID COLOUR WOOD STAIN. You’ll be good for years.


Mom: Outdoor flooring.

Clerk #7: Whatever you do, do not use a high pressure water hose. It will gouge the wood.

Elderly neighbour who lives on our left: When you do something, you should do it right the first time. Why back in my day…

Clerk #9: With treated wood, there’s no need to prime it. Ever.

Woman walking her dog that sometimes doo doos in our yard: Should have used composite flooring.

Marina (Sister-in-law): We used the “lifetime guaranteed not to rot composite flooring.” The wood underneath is probably rotting as we speak.


Deck Builder: Flip the boards.

4 year old neighbour who lives 2 doors down: Those light brown spots don’t look good.

Andrew (son): Looks good enough for a nap. What’d you do?

John: Oh my God. We tried everything, but sanding and painting only the chipped areas  was the only thing that worked.

Mom: What did I tell you?

Shelley and John


19 thoughts on “Happy Freakin’ Ground Hog Day

  1. The beautiful Kent area of Seattle has the same kind of problem with crappy weather. Go figure, huh? I finally stained my cedar deck this year and I’m hoping it lasts longer than one summer season (and the other three seasons of rain). I guess we’ll see next summer, right? On the plus side, I decided to use Trex style decking on the new front porch and that looks awesome! Maybe I should blog about it…some nifty DIY porch blog. Have a great summer!


      • Trex is that plastic decking. I thought everyone called it Trex. It’s at all the home improvement stores here so maybe they refer to it as something else. It’s a composite plastic decking. Comes in all colors. I was going to change out the cedar on my back deck but it was a $1000 just for the decking plus a lot of work. I’m too lazy to work hard on a deck I use for six weeks a year.


  2. I was having bad flash backs when reading your post. I had the same experience, year after freakin year after flippin year. I mean seriously, can’t they make a one time stain that last forever? My husband asked me one day if I really liked that huge, monsterous deck and I replied that I hated it, it was so much work and as soon as I can enjoy it, it’s time to stain it again. He brought up an idea that he had and I relished that idea.
    We tore out the deck, and poured concrete….love it, no more stain.


  3. I feel your pain!!! We have to do our front porch every year!! Never ends! We turned our back deck into a three season porch with tiles – so at least we don’t have to do that deck anymore!! 🙂


  4. Guess what? I have some advice! If it fails again next year…sand, and stain with Sikken’s out door deck stain and sealer. It’s expensive but it lasts longer than anything else I have used…Stick that in your pipe and smoke it Mr. Neighbor-why-back-in-my-day-we-did-things-right-the-first-time.


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