Ponderings #16: The Certain Feeling

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Blog entry by Tomcat1066 posted 02-17-2008 02:39 PM 923 reads 0 times favorited 8 comments Add to Favorites Watch
« Part 15: The Slippery Slope Part 16 of Ponderings series Part 17: Staying the Course? »

I don’t smile much. Well, let me rephrase that. I smile all the time, but only when amused, so it’s always obvious why I’m smiling. I’m not one of those people you will see smiling for no obvious reason. I need a reason to smile, and honestly that leaves a lot of time when I’m not smiling at all.

That was, until yesterday. I started building my bench. I put in about 6 hours yesterday, and was frankly exhausted by the time I went in for the day. As a newbie, I figure 6 hours is a long, long time. The odd thing was why I called it a day. I needed my spokeshave for the next part, and frankly it was as dull as Forrest Gump on Quaalude’s after a fifth of vodka. I knew that, by the time I sharpened it and got it set up correctly, it would be about supper time anyways. It just seemed the logical point to call it a day.

My wife was pretty proud of me, so she took me to dinner (free food is good). When I got home, I collapsed in the bed with the TV on and watched design shows on HGTV (shhhh…don’t tell! Let’s keep this between us). While laying there, during a commercial even, I caught myself just smiling. I’m physically wiped out, but I’ve got this goofy smile.

This smile was for a variety of reasons, I suspect. One is that I started a project that, I think, will kick much butt when it’s done. Two was the fact that I’m pushing myself to try new things with this project. Granted, as a newbie, everything is a “new thing”, but I could have been content just building a rough outdoor bench that no one would have looked down on for being “not pretty”, but that’s just not my style. I want people to oo and ah over this thing, and it to be legitimate oo’s and ah’s. In short, I want a kick butt piece. So, I’m forcing myself to learn new things in building this.

Now, originally, this was going to just be a simple bench. Nothing fancy. Well, it’s still not “fancy”, just more challenging. It’s a challenge I’m not backing down from, and I’m not rushing through. That’s always been an issue for me, rushing through things. I wanted the result, not the process so much. This time, however, I seem content to let the process happen. What makes one a “woodworker”? It’s working with wood. Not necessarily having furniture in your home that you built, though that’s a nice bonus for some of us. I’m a woodworker…not a pretender or a wannabe, but an honest to God woodworker.

If that’s not reason enough for me to smile, then what is?

-- "Give me your poor tools, your tired steel, your huddled masses of rust." Yep, I ripped off the Statue of Liberty. That's how I roll!

8 comments so far

View Eric's profile


875 posts in 3748 days

#1 posted 02-17-2008 02:46 PM

View Scott Bryan's profile

Scott Bryan

27250 posts in 3786 days

#2 posted 02-17-2008 06:33 PM

Wonderful attitude Tomcat. Every day is one that should bring us an inner smile. This is another opportunity to be a mom, dad, grandparent, friend, neighbor, etc. to those around us. It gives us another opportunity to pursue the challenges that God presents to us. Each day is a gift to be treasured. From your post yesterday was an especially treasured day. Good for you.

Let’s make some sawdust.

Thanks for the post.

-- Challenges are what make life interesting; overcoming them is what makes life meaningful- Joshua Marine

View Zuki's profile


1404 posts in 4041 days

#3 posted 02-17-2008 07:05 PM

You ponder quite well TC.

-- BLOG -

View Todd A. Clippinger's profile

Todd A. Clippinger

8901 posts in 4063 days

#4 posted 02-17-2008 08:13 PM

I love watching others grow in their woodworking skills. It is a discovery of self as much as anything. It is challenging and satisfying. I am looking forward to seeing the finished project and hearing how much you learned from it.

-- Todd A. Clippinger, Montana,

View Blake's profile


3443 posts in 3838 days

#5 posted 02-17-2008 09:19 PM


-- Happy woodworking!

View mjlauro's profile


244 posts in 3725 days

#6 posted 02-18-2008 12:22 AM

Right on Tomcat. I find that I get a real sense of achievement and satisfaction just sweeping my shop floor. But none more statisfying then a hard days work doing something you love.

View Tomcat1066's profile


942 posts in 3760 days

#7 posted 02-18-2008 01:12 AM

Thanks everyone! I did have a blast yesterday, and more fun today as well as a few lessons learned. However, I have a blog post to make in that regard :)

-- "Give me your poor tools, your tired steel, your huddled masses of rust." Yep, I ripped off the Statue of Liberty. That's how I roll!

View MsDebbieP's profile


18615 posts in 4125 days

#8 posted 02-18-2008 05:18 PM

((pat on the back))

-- ~ Debbie, Canada (

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