As promised, here is my re-finished French step side table. First, my brother scraped the paint, which was dry, cracked and smelled of cigarettes. Then he sanded the whole thing down and realized that two of the joints were broken. The previous owner had sealed up the cracks with scotch tape.
After a can of spray on KILZ primer, two coats of Chinese Red paint from Behr, some sanding and a final coat of spray on Polyurethane.... Here it is!