Universal Laws

Contractor Push

pic of the cottage
A cottage in the woods, upstate New York

My father’s house in upstate New York needed an overhaul, starting from the inside. I mentioned this to a friend, but his dear friend who does EVERYTHING house-wise just moved to Atlanta. The friend’s mother-in-law lives in Syracuse, New York. Maybe something could be worked out where they come together and the wife visits mom a few hours away.

How is this going to work?

Well, Shaun Davis, The Octagon, made it happen. He is called eight-sided because he expertly handles flooring, electrical, plumbing, masonry, sheetrock, carpentry, pipefitting, HVAC.


The Octagon is much like my father in being fearless, curious and creative. Almost all of his skills were needed.

The Octagon fixed at least five busted copper pipes (don’t ask), installed five fixtures, built a shelf in the bathroom, retiled the entryway floor, replaced ceiling tiles, put new switch plates on many outlets, capped off nonworking wires where lamps will not be installed, fixed leaky faucets, balanced the kitchen countertop, was about to fix a hole in the roof but I said We’ll hold off on that, and much more.

Shaun also called the hot water heater people since the on/off switching rendered it useless. He spent an hour with them testing the heater and going through the motions designed to get it to start up once more. These failed. It was 20 years old anyway. Shaun provided me with the name, serial number and details needed to get a replacement at an affordable price.

Meanwhile his wife cleaned. I couldn’t be more blessed. Gwen went behind Shaun and prettified as she went. She made it like home!

She mounted on a wall the students’  paintings my father had framed before he passed. She put the rest of the storable stuff laying around in the shed. The couple got his DVD to work and were playing CDs from his old 50s jazz greats collection.


I had envisioned Shaun concentrating on electrical work. Life said Your priority is to do this plumbing. I am so happy the Octagon was sent to me as the multitalented man for the job, along with his wife who was obviously indispensable.

What I also had envisioned was Shaun interacting with my father’s friend Pastor Julius Collins. This materialized with the Pastor coming by on his way home from Monticello, and going over everything dad had done and why and wherefore. Shaun got a real understanding of who Conrad Clare was and his modus operandi.

Not only that, but on Monday the couple visited Pastor’s church on their way to HomeDepot, and got additional questions answered about doing construction work in an upstate community.

Gwen didn’t get to visit her mother and Shaun’s dad and sister didn’t get to come by from Connecticut, but they honored my father’s legacy and made their flight from Newark airport back to Atlanta in the nick of time.

Did I mention their travel was supported by Shaun’s colleague in recognition of his excellent work ethic?  And that my daughter helped foot the bill for the car rental? They had originally intended to drive up.

I thought I would have to drive up Sunday and Monday or stay locally myself just to be on top of things. Didn’t need to. Total trust, clarity and sharing. Gwen cooked meals on the few pots and pans my dad had.

Yes, the reality was different from my vision. More beautiful, timely, perfect, gracious. From the Push principle because of frozen pipes, to the Expand and Praise principles that resulted from commitment to a job well done. I Asked for it and Received the blessing, praise God.


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