Observations #3: A Real Challenge

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Blog entry by Russel posted 01-25-2008 10:28 PM 1045 reads 0 times favorited 9 comments Add to Favorites Watch
« Part 2: Even the Bad is Good Part 3 of Observations series Part 4: Growing Pains »

Okay, once more, with feeling … I love this place. However, it does try my patience at times. The most recent challenge is a perfect example.

I am quite the novice at this woodworking thing and I’m pretty pleased with my progress, and even more so with what I’m learning to do and appreciate. As it turns out, I am learning a craft, a skill. And in the process I am learning to recognize and appreciate the skill in the work of others. A few years back I could not have known how difficult and beautiful simplicity can be. It’s a different world being surrounded by skilled artisans who are more than willing to share their skills through demonstration and encouragement.

Now the “Not Just Any Box” and “Muti-purposed 2×4” challenge is my first attempt at being judged. I don’t expect to actually win anything, but the challenge to actually “compete” was quite daunting. So, I mustered my elementary skills and creativity and stumbled right on in. The process is it’s own reward.

Of course seeing some of the other entries let me know that my place was solidly in the background. Yet, I was okay with that. I know full well that I am not ready for prime time. And still I have received more positive encouragement than I could have imagined. (Have I mentioned that I love this place?)

Now, as the challenge moves forward, I find that my patience is wearing a bit thin. First, those that post teasers are driving my crazy! I have minimal imagination so sometimes I hurt myself trying to figure out what you folks are building. I fully expect to be impressed, but I’m getting tired of waiting. Hurry up already!

And, the waiting causes another problem. Looking at the currently posted entries I’m having a difficult time deciding how to vote. If there are too many more entries, I’m pretty sure my head will explode and I won’t be able to vote. That would be a real downer. This is almost worse than waiting for Santa.

All seriousness aside, I appreciate the time that’s taken to show what’s being made and the process involved. As I said, I’ve learned alot from the multitude of blogs, projects and forums. I’m eager to see the results, so on with the show.

-- Working at Woodworking

9 comments so far

View GaryK's profile


10262 posts in 3923 days

#1 posted 01-25-2008 10:40 PM

Please don’t let your head explode, and have patience :-).

As for lacking skill, everybody lacks some skill and that’s why we keep at it, to get better.

Keep at it!

-- Gary - Never pass up the opportunity to make a mistake look like you planned it that way - Tyler, TX

View Mike Lingenfelter's profile

Mike Lingenfelter

503 posts in 4048 days

#2 posted 01-25-2008 10:45 PM

I’ve often been told, you will not succeed if you don’t put yourself out there. We are often harder on ourselves than other are.

I do agree that it’s going to be hard picking the top few, when there are so many nice entries.

View rpmurphy509's profile


288 posts in 3789 days

#3 posted 01-25-2008 11:23 PM

What a wonderful read. I sympathize with you Russel, going through the same feelings.

I am amazed again and again with some of these (most actually) entries.
Looking forward to seeing all of them completed and posted so I can be
amazed all over again.

-- Still learning everything

View Zuki's profile


1404 posts in 4012 days

#4 posted 01-26-2008 01:07 AM

Russel . . . sorry if I have cause you any grief with Project X. (hehehehehehehe)

I have made a couple of hints in my blog . . . actually I said what I was making in one of them. You just gotta find it . . . :-D

The past few days have been crazzzzzzzy with snow. I have been spending way to much time shovelling snow and not wwing. Gonna finish of Project X this weekend.

-- BLOG -

View RAH's profile


414 posts in 3811 days

#5 posted 01-26-2008 06:15 AM

It also amazes me what people are making from a 2 X 4. I was given a table recently, particle board veneer top however the legs are 2” x 2” x 24”, I stand there and stare at them.

-- Ron Central, CA

View Thos. Angle's profile

Thos. Angle

4444 posts in 3897 days

#6 posted 01-26-2008 07:27 AM

Russel, you’d look funny with yer head exploded. Not a pretty thought. Please maintain. We like you as you is.

-- Thos. Angle, Jordan Valley, Oregon

View rikkor's profile


11295 posts in 3809 days

#7 posted 01-26-2008 11:35 AM

Hey, it’s all over in less than a week now. I am quite prepared to be severely humbled by the entries.

View MsDebbieP's profile


18615 posts in 4095 days

#8 posted 01-28-2008 04:50 PM

I hear you…. I enter these challenges for my own personal challenge and obviously not to “win”.

And as for the voting. Thank goodness we get a week; it’s going to take that long to decide!!!

-- ~ Debbie, Canada (

View Russel's profile


2199 posts in 3874 days

#9 posted 01-28-2008 05:18 PM

MsDebbie, I’m glad I entered when I did. If I had waited I would have been way too intimidated to even try. The entries just keep getting better and better. The work here is impressive and not an arrogant ego to be found.

-- Working at Woodworking

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