1.23.2013

Old Man Rant

   All consuming excitement is the best way to describe how it feels to see a project solution in my mind's eye. I am greatly agitated until I can get the time and materials alone, with tools in hand. The 1970's gave us a lot of cultural lessons in America. To me, the most important was the do-it-yourself work ethic.
   Men were interested in building and creating the things that they needed. "Honey, a coffee table with a couple drawers would be nice for the den." "Okay." Then the husband would go outside to his shop and build the damn thing. All I can say is pride!

2006 - DIY Christmas
Contractor Christmas - 2006
   Now, a good deal of the outcomes were unfavorable and even hideous. That was not their fault, it was the fashion of the time. Dark stains, heavy-ass bulky furniture, visually suffocating decor loaded with dead color decadence. There were literally entire encyclopedias of Popular Mechanics projects (I had a set.) It was a far cry from the ever consumable nature of modern retail products.
   I choose the word "ethic" very carefully. My generation's grandpas and dads actually built stuff. I hear a lot of talk about making things, but I see people who would rather watch home improvement television, than actually make something. Even as a kid, I could not comprehend the mess of tools in my grandfather's garage. Old, gnarled, ugly tools that had actually been used for a lifetime. And this was not his trade, but a manly necessity that goes much farther back to an agricultural era. Sadly, this is a small part of America that is not being instilled in the next generation.
   Technological progress is important, and I am enjoying the perks as I type, edit and post this to the entire world. My concern is the mental fortitude and focus that is required to take a scrawled out drawing and turn it into reality. This is much bigger than a handmade end table. It is part of what makes me special, but I would gladly give up feeling unique, in order to share the sense of pride I know.

  

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