Okay ladies and germs, be honest. How many of you have ever heard this
uttered from your spouse/parent/child's mouth before? For me, this
usually comes at a point in the project when I am feeling like I could
have done about five-six things better and that I could never fully
appreciate the object in the end. Something about hearing those four
little words just puts the wind back into the old sails (and puffs the
chest a little to be completely honest).
Most of us are our own worst critics. Feels good when you hear those words
though. I've made some simple gifts that have been truly appreciated and one
reason I do it is for the satisfaction that comes with the giving.
..and if you hadn't said that, I would be thinking of quitting Real
Every little bit, from either people who do the same thing a lot, or
from a child, lights the way-
Ain't it the truth! I've never done a woodworking, gardening, or model
railroad project that I thought was really good. But I've gotten that
reaction often enough to keep me going.
I guess if we lost that attitude, we'd really turn out some junk :-).
You have obviously never had my wife preview a piece. She gets on my case if
I don't stain finish and rub out the back of a wall cabinet. Just wait till
yours becomes more sophisticated in judging woodworking.
It's nice to get comments like that - but - most people use what
they see in "furniture" stores as their frame of reference. When
YOU look at a piece you made and say "I can't believe I made that!"
is the kick in the ass befuddled grin experience. Of course YOU
will always be aware of what could have been done better or
differently but still...
In ignorance, mixed with naive enthusiasm, and a JoinTech Cabinet
Maker System router table top and fence, I made a "Modular Wall
Hanging Tool Cabinet, with half blind dovetails, piano hinges
and a boatload of modules for a sh*t load of handtools (I see
toys - make that "tools" - think "that looks like I could use
it someday" and get it). Did through and have blind dovetails,
finger/box joints, sliding dovetails, dados, rabbets and
mitered corners - all in ignorant bliss. The Buble Bee Syndrome
- I didn't know, as a newbie, that I wasn't suppose to be
able to fly. I called the project "done" after finishing a
3" x 3" x 3", half blind dovetailed mini-drawer to fill the
almost full space.
Here's the url for the item in question for those interested
My objective is not to brag or show off - ok maybe a little
showing off - rather it's to get folks to try something they
may think is "too hard". Being one's own worst critic can
keep one improving. Do - crtique - improve - enjoy the trip.
(if you checked out the url provided click on the "back to
the index" link at the bottom of any page and then check
out the OOPS! link. I've put just some of my screw ups
out there for all to see, and maybe learn from. There's
even some BLOOD!)
for the lazy reader
Charlie, interesting pages, but the 2nd page on your modular cabinet
seems to have some broken links to several of your photos.
You hav given me some ideas about cabinets for my shop, although I wont
go into dovetails and such! :)
Been there, done that. One of my aunts one day at a family event wanted to know
WHEN I head learned enough to write, IIRC, about 15-20 books on various
subjects. I was about 45 then, I think, and she was still recalling the
7-8-9-10-11-12 year old who spent summers with her or one of her siblings.
"All you need in this life is ignorance and confidence, and then success is
Hehe ... sometimes you're the same as you were twenty years ago in some
folks mind. Worst profession for this is music. No matter how good you are
now, fellow musicians still remember you "back when".
Famous Dude came back to visit his small hometown after 20 years of being on
the road, winning Grammies, and generally making the big time. Just as he's
leaving after a two week visit, he runs across Joe, an old musician buddy he
hasn't seen in twenty years.
Joe says: "How you doing man, haven't seen, or heard about you, in years?"
Famous Dude: "Pretty good, man. I've done pretty well in music and been on a
roll lately. AAMOF, my last album went Platinum, just like the four before
Joe: "Oh man, I did NOT hear about that ... tell me more."
Famous Dude: "Well dude, I've done pretty well since I've seen you ...
played with SRV on his last two albums, sang with Ray Charles, did an album
or two with BB, then broke out on my own and managed to pick up a couple of
Grammy's, and I just broke into the movie business out in Hollywood"
Joe: "Man, that's good news ... I didn't hear about any of that..
Famous Dude: "Thanks! Well man, I got to catch a plane to Hollywood to do a
movie score for Martin Scorcese. I sure enjoyed coming back and seeing all
the old guys we used to play with. AAMOF, I caught them at the old gig at
the Dew Drop Inn the other night. They sounded great and it was good to hear
them again. Hell, they even asked me to sit in for old time's sake. Dude, it
was fun ... I had real good time, even though I was a little rusty after
being off for a couple of weeks and missed a couple of the changes on "Satin
Joe: "Yeah ... I heard about that!"
I had one guy (who was a carpenter of sorts) come over to my place and I
remember how he exclaimed over my entertainment centre how perfect I'd made
the butt joints. That felt pretty good. Then he ruined it by examining
further and finding the one mistake I'd made in the entire unit. :)
Along the same lines, I got a similar response from a customer when I was
working IBM support. Client called in and had five specific questions about
his laptop and operating system. I was able to immediately rattle of five
complete answers to his questions. As he was hanging up the phone I heard
him say to his wife. "Wow, these guys know everything." Happened seven years
ago and I still remember how great that felt.
Oh, yeah. I made a couple of nice rocking horses for some newborn
nephews and nieces out of cherry, walnut, and curly maple. I have one
sister-in-law that I think still suspects I either bought it, or maybe
had it commissioned ;-)
Compliments like this are nice, but I don't think it pays to take
anything too seriously. About the time you think you are getting some
skill, you will enter a piece in the local woodworking show. And
you'll walk through the entries and notice that you still have a long
long way to go. DAMHIKT.
I have an experienced woodworking buddy who says that you should never
dwell on the mistakes you make in your own projects, and you should
never notice the mistakes that others make in theirs. I think this is
Ft Collins, CO
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