Meanderings #1: No, haven't died, but did go into the light...

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Blog entry by David Craig posted 08-28-2011 02:40 PM 1412 reads 0 times favorited 13 comments Add to Favorites Watch
no previous part Part 1 of Meanderings series Part 2: Flotsam and Jetsam. Pain and Panic. »

Of day anyway…

It has been almost 6 months since I posted anything on here. It has been a rocky spring and summer. The Spring here in Michigan was a very wet one and I spent more time keeping my shop from becoming excessively flooded than actually working in it. I was able to keep the water at bay and no damage to the tools and wood, just a little more flotsam and jetsam then I am particularly used to. My company was sold to an Asian company in Februrary and the overseas support that was supposed to “augment” our staffing has now shifted to replacing it. My brother who has lived with me since his diagnosis of MS over two years ago was becoming quite antsy in regards to his disability hearing and had a cancellation occur the day before his hearing. The atmosphere was a little on the tense side and definitely did not lead to inspiration in the more artistic realm.

But like all things, both good and bad, those times are here only for a season.

I took a trip to Chicago in July and spent some time in a few museums, looked at the city from the top of the Willis Tower. They have large open views from the sky deck and sometimes looking at things from that vantage point gives you a little perspective. You can see a million dots, from above, each representing a person, a lifetime of stories of successes and failures that are not your own, and it makes your own trials seem less uniqute or daunting. The museums were a pleasant outing. I was able to see wood craft from many different cultures spanning several millenia. I was also able to look at the whole evolution of technology and history in many different fields. To summarize, within a 48 hour period of time I was in an Egyptian tomb, a Nazi U-Boat, stood in the tallest building, touched a module that had went into space, viewed a Van Gogh, looked at a Mayan sun wheel, witnessed woodworking since the dawn of man, watched fireworks while laying on my back in a boat in the middle of Lake Michigan, and spent time talking to a Beluga whale. Not a bad way to spend a few days :)

Recharged I came back and things started to change. My brother won his settlement without a challenge from the occupational expert. He moved out a couple weeks ago and has a nice apartment about two miles from me. I recieved an offer of employment with another company last Thursday. I will be making close to my current salary as an hourly worker. I have been on salary for the last 7 years with no idea on what my schedule would be. The hiring manager was a guy that I worked with a few years ago. I left an impression on him and he really greased the wheels to make the process as quick and painless as he could. Just goes to show that as tempting as it is to act out on frustration or to wage war against your employer, you never know who might be watching or taking notice of your work. I am glad I learned to not burn any bridges if I can help it. My brother gave me the funds, as a parting gift, to purchase the 14” Grizzly Ultimate Bandsaw. I have it on a mobile base and was able to purchase the riser blocks as well.

So now I have a new job, house to myself, and most of the concerns I have for my immediate family alleviated. I visited Mike (jockmike2) last week and he is looking good. All rev’d up to give me a hand building furniture for my empty nest. My life has been given back to me and I have the tools to do something with that time.

What more can an aspiring woodworker ask for?


-- There is little that is simple when it comes to making a simple box.

13 comments so far

View MsDebbieP's profile


18615 posts in 4216 days

#1 posted 08-28-2011 02:53 PM

Bless your heart!
You are a Wise One in our midst and we can learn LOTS from this wee blog.
Thank you for sharing, for being so inspirational, and congrats re: the turnaround in your life!

Happy woodworking :D

-- ~ Debbie, Canada (

View degoose's profile


7237 posts in 3410 days

#2 posted 08-28-2011 03:02 PM

What indeed… you seem to have the world at your feet… good for you… keep up the good work and play safe..

-- Don't drink and use power tools @

View Dennisgrosen's profile


10880 posts in 3170 days

#3 posted 08-28-2011 03:22 PM

congrat´s David with your new work , your new toy
and best of all a fammilymember on his own feet again :-)

good to hear from you , great your shop wasn´t flooded I experienced that for the first time in ten years
never thought it shuold happen again :-(

take care

View patron's profile


13611 posts in 3396 days

#4 posted 08-28-2011 03:45 PM

welcome back into the light

great take on life


-- david - only thru kindness can this world be whole . If we don't succeed we run the risk of failure. Dan Quayle

View Roger's profile


20929 posts in 2859 days

#5 posted 08-28-2011 03:49 PM

sounds like things are all falling into place. congrats and good luck. I can definately relate to the “down-time” from the shop. I’ve had one o those summers also. have fun with that new bandsaw. look forward to seeing some projects. work safe

-- Roger from KY. Work/Play/Travel Safe. Keep your dust collector fed.

View BritBoxmaker's profile


4611 posts in 3091 days

#6 posted 08-28-2011 04:15 PM

Good to see you back posting, David. Best wishes for you and all you achieve. I look forward to further posts.

-- Martyn -- Boxologist, Pattern Juggler and Candyman of the visually challenging.

View David Craig's profile

David Craig

2137 posts in 3164 days

#7 posted 08-28-2011 04:51 PM

Good catch Bently. It would appear that I didn’t use my shift key when I needed to. The 14 feet are required when I need to square up a wall by taking an inch off. Blade wandering is a bit of a pain to deal with and the blades are a little harder to come by ;) I corrected my post.

Thanks for the kind words, I definitely missed the lot of you and am glad to be active again. I won’t say that the world is at my feet but nice to not be at its mercy. All a lesson on perspective for my part. We can’t control our situations but we can control our reactions towards it. I feel very blessed, which is easy to feel at the current moment. I just need to remember to keep that even when it would seem that things are coming apart.

-- There is little that is simple when it comes to making a simple box.

View Jim Bertelson's profile

Jim Bertelson

4187 posts in 3220 days

#8 posted 08-28-2011 05:05 PM

Hey, that a way to hang in there. Losing a job in this economy is not trivial. Perhaps the old saying…”What goes around, comes around…” applies here.

My son, in his 40’s works for Caterpillar in middle management. When they went through a bunch of layoffs, we were biting our nails…they eliminated his position. But they hired him laterally into a different position with essentially the same pay, etc. A few years ago, frustrated with an unorganized aspect of his job, he made a big spread sheet to solve the problem, purely on his own volition. Didn’t have the priviledges to program any of it so he did it all with formulas. The spread sheet was put in use throughout the whole corporation, and he got jumped a couple of pay grades. I suspect that was why he survived the layoffs….........

Doing a good job is never a bad thing. Even when you thin no one notices. It means people are benefitting somewhere along the line.

Have a good one, I have missed your insights, and your….......antics…..(-:

On call this weekend, kinda light, doing a little work on a vise installation. But it is hard to concentrate with the interruptions. Also, can’t do anything that requires completing the job within a defined time frame, like finishing, and complicated glueups.


-- Jim, Anchorage Alaska

View lilredweldingrod's profile


2496 posts in 3162 days

#9 posted 08-28-2011 08:07 PM

Welcome back from your hiatus. Great news about your brother, and you ain’t doing so bad yourself.

The old adage about being careful who you step on while climbing ladders really came home for you. Nice guys really do win.

Now go build a dike around the shop and make sure the sump pump is in good order. lol You can send the wet lumber to the Mojave for a dry out. But don’t be surprised if some of it wonders off. We have very active wood fairy’s here.

View Beginningwoodworker's profile


13345 posts in 3728 days

#10 posted 08-28-2011 09:47 PM

Welcome back, David.

View 489tad's profile


3379 posts in 3067 days

#11 posted 08-29-2011 01:58 AM

Good luck David.

-- Dan, Naperville IL, I.G.N.

View Bob Collins's profile

Bob Collins

2522 posts in 3739 days

#12 posted 08-29-2011 07:38 AM

G’day David, good to hear your life is back, best of luck for the future.

-- Bob C, Australia. Your best teacher is your last mistake.

View jockmike2's profile


10635 posts in 4302 days

#13 posted 08-29-2011 10:16 PM

What’s this about homemade furniture? I must have missed something in our conversation. Oh well, I need to make some of my own, all we got to do is go see our favorite sawyer and get some good deals there. I have to get me one of those bandsaws. You know it’s always a pleasure to have you come, even if we don’t get much work done usually. LOL. I got the go so lets make some cool stuff. Your bud.

-- (You just have to please the man in the Mirror) Mike from Michigan -

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