I decided recently to build some shelving units in my Garage.
Basically, I have accumulated so many tools, supplies and jigs etc,
that I have pushed both cars out of the garage. SWMBO is very
supportive and doesn't seem to mind that I spend thousands of dollars
on tools and wood and spend the whole weekend in the garage making
sawdust and drinking beer, as long as she occassionally gets a piece
of furniture out of the deal.
Anyway, here is my problem. For a set of garage shelves, what I
really needed was some 2/4 structure with some particle board shelves.
Probably a weekend's work.
But noooo.. I decide to make a massive birch cabinet 10 feet wide, two
feet deep and 8 foot high, complete with doors. Also, I am finding
that the longer I am in this darn hobby, the more fussy I get. A cut
this is off 1/64th I have to force myself not to scrap. I have been
tinkering with this thing a couple hours every other day for a week or
so and I got to wondering.. why? Why do I have to have a cosmetically
perfect shelf for the garage? I am wondering if I am going insane.
No, you are not going insane; you simply have to find some interests other
A minor defect can be intolerable when you have nothing else to do, but
easily ignored when you are hurrying to go do something else. You need the
Yes, you are insane. You proved that the day you bought your first
woodworking tool. Normal people sit in front of the TV, drink beer, and
belch a lot.
I find myself doing the same as you. I consider every joint a trial and
education to better my abilities. The only saving aspect of this is that
when you are done you can be very proud of what you did. Insane still, but
firstname.lastname@example.org (George) wrote in message
Yes, you are going (have gone)insane. Why else would you give SWMBO an
occasional piece of furniture out of the deal. It is your shop and
your hobby. The only thing that you should be building is shop stuff
like jigs, fixtures and shop cabinets. Sheeeesh - what were you
thinking. Just put the defective cabinet in the house (call it her
occasional piece of furniture if needed for marital bliss)and build a
perfect one for the gar...uh shop. BTW, why did you ever have cars in
your shop? I just don't understand.
Naw, that is called the "shop staging area", you don't want to park cars there.
I think the town (city, county state, whatever) built a perfect place for
parking cars. It's called a "road". You know, that thing you drive on to bring
more wood home. BTW what's all this talk about "cars"? You can't bring home
more wood in a car....unless of course you have a trailer. Then you need to
figure out where to park the trailer.... Well, if the trailer is used
exclusively for bringing home wood and tools, I guess you could park it in the
"shop staging area" (see above). It could then also be used to move around
those nicely stickered stacks of wood in that storage area that used to be
wasted on grass, shrubs and flowers just outside your front door (yes, I mean
the front door of the house, you can't go blocking the front door of the shop
with piles of wood since you need a clear pathway to bring wood into the
Years ago some wag (George Carlin?) talked about how we keep all of our
crap in the garage, while leaving expensive cars out in the rain to
rust. I realized the other day that my woodworking stuff that has taken
over the garage is worth far more than the car, so I'm keeping it the
way it is!
I feel your pain. I'm "helping" the kids build a tree house. Nothing
fancy, just an 8X12 deck, dead level, built around two trees that are
about 3 feet apart, cantilevered off the trees with no other support;
with a gabled roof and plywood walls, painted to match the house. No
glass in the windows or paneling on the interior walls or anything
fancy like that. But I have to keep reminding myself that it's just a
tree house. I find myself obsessing over each joint, and each
surface, just like you described. I can hear the voice of some fellow
woodworker point out some place where a joint isn't tight, or an edge
isn't rounded over. Or worse; the silence that goes with contempt. I
don't even have any woodworkers who come over to critique my work, but
still, I hear their accusations that I just didn't care enough to do
it right. Our friends, doubtless like yours, are simply amazed that I
can take simple boards and turn them into useful, sometimes even
attractive items. But their praises are not the voices I hear. I
hear only the critic that lives in my head, who looks at every tiny
mistake and says, "And you call yourself a woodworker?"
"We should be careful to get out of an experience only the wisdom
that is in it - and stop there; lest we be like the cat that sits down
on a hot stove-lid. She will never sit down on a hot stove-lid
again---and that is well; but also she will never sit down on a cold
one anymore." - Mark Twain
email@example.com (George) wrote in message
On 27 Jul 2004 07:11:49 -0700, firstname.lastname@example.org (DonkeyHody)
sure, glad to help out, from right here in my chair....
"You're not just going to leave it like that, are you?"
"I dunno, y'think that's strong enough?"
"Nah. that board's too crooked to use there."
"Woah! you can see that gap from the street!"
"Geeze... sand it down a little, willya... kids are gonna be using
"man, I hate it when I hit my thumb like that. hurt bad?"
Boy, I must have it real bad then. I have a shop and tools, hear voices
all the time, sold my truck years ago, and now drive a Civic.
Real hard to get sheet goods home.
Now that it is up, could you move it over to the left just a ..., no, I
think to the right...,
I thought it was going to be out of oak. How could you make it out of pine
and put it in an oak tree.
Hey, isn't that backwards.
Could you make the windows a little smaller?
It's too high, lower it just a little
No, I liked it better where it was before you moved it. Would it be
possible to move it back?
Uh, the building inspector says you need a permit.......
Oh, could little Johnny help? After all, it will be his clubhouse.
That mahogany is a little dark. Should we paint it white?
How come you used those angle cuts on the windows, wouldn't it be easier to
just make straight cuts to put the boards together?
So, you hear the voice too? And it says the same things to you.
Unless . . .AHAH!! YOURS is the voice I hear! You impossible
taskmaster! Why can't you ever say anything nice? Seems like you
could at least manage a "nicely done" once in a while, but no; the
best I ever get from you is "I guess it'll do."
"There's a difference between doing things right, and doing the right
On 26 Jul 2004 06:27:58 -0700, email@example.com (George) wrote:
One might ask, why don't you steal a piece of fruit from the stand when no
one is looking? Honesty, and a belief that you should earn things, not
take them. If you do your best even when no one else is looking, it just
might be dedication to always doing a good job. Pride. Dedication.
... or OCD. Take you pick.
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