Rustic Ramblings

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Blog entry by dennis mitchell posted 12-08-2006 01:04 AM 780 reads 0 times favorited 4 comments Add to Favorites Watch

I’ve been playing with electricity again. This year I bought a halogen double light with the stand for use on construction lights. Well it quit on me. I changed the bulbs..bypassed the cord and the switches..cussed…still isn’t working. Ten weeks ago I ordered a fan and set of lights for my house they look great. Four pendant lights to match the fan were all to long so I had to shorten them…anyway after cutting every thing down with my hacksaw and some creative use of a tap and die set I got them up. Now the twentyfive dollar light switch will not turn off. I’m getting old and cranky. I vividly remember grandpa bitching about how they just don’t make things like they use to. I’m really tired of buying crap. In the last five years a Wal-mart and 3 one dollar stores (where you can get a 73cent item for a dollar) opened in my town. I know I’m powerless over American buying habits.

I have a buddy makes ten times what I make telling banks how much a house is worth. The quality of workmanship has absolutly nothing to do with the price he gives to a bank. I get paid the same to install your kitchen crappily as I do to do a quality job. The question I always hear is how long will it take and what will it cost. I’m powerless over the fact that in this world your house is more an investment than a home.

This is what I walk away from when I start working at my bench. I have this feeling that there is something spiritual about woodworkers. I’m not sure we belong to this time or place. It’s something about how our minds and hearts get involved a project. I loved doing remodels where I got to meet the family because I understand its not just a product I build it is part of how a family lives and loves. I am emotionally diminished when I lose track of what furniture is and start to think only in terms of board feet and hours involved…then again maybe I just need medicated!

4 comments so far

View StevieD's profile


9 posts in 3610 days

#1 posted 12-08-2006 02:14 AM

Personaly I learned along time ago don’t buy anything from walmart, it is of poor quality I only shop at local lumber and hardware shops.
New to this forum and hope to show off some of my projects in the future.

-- Steven Big Timber Mt.

View frank's profile


1492 posts in 3627 days

#2 posted 12-08-2006 01:43 PM

Hi Dennis,
I really liked what you said here, ”.... woodworkers. I’m not sure we belong to this time or place”. I really understand the cry of your heart as my heart has echod the same. I’m afraid that for some of us, we were born too late into this ‘space of time’.

There was a time when I used to do kitchens and living rooms for families and then, nobody could get on the same page. Home Depot, Lowes and Wal-Mart annd all you needed to be as ‘in the trade’ was a pickup truck, cell phone and some bright shiny new power tools, and yes I have all these and still use them, ‘its just that for me they are no fun anymore’. Why learn to read a ruler when it can all be done by digital?

So yes, I got out and went back in time to the place of froes, drawknives and broadaxe, ....I’m still wanting to build and learn how to use the pole lathe. Where has the quality of woodworking gone when wood floors are not even real wood any longer?

“I am emotionally diminished when I lose track of what furniture is and start to think only in terms of board feet and hours involved…”, and how that quality has taken a back seat to quanity according to how much, plus what is in my bank account. And then someone comes along and tells me to stop rambling and get to work.

If you find a medication that works, let me know as I need some also!

-- --frank, NH,

View Mark A. DeCou's profile

Mark A. DeCou

2008 posts in 3827 days

#3 posted 12-08-2006 05:46 PM

well said, I’ll add my “second” to Frank’s comments. You are a great way of expressing the emotions, the pain, the anxiety, and the fun involved with the passion of woodworking. Thanks for sharing your shortcomings, your worries, and yourself, it is thought provoking reading, and I enjoy them each time.

-- Mark DeCou - American Contemporary Craft Artisan -

View jockmike2's profile


10635 posts in 3668 days

#4 posted 12-14-2006 06:39 PM

Hi Dennis, I just like the way you start out, “playing with electricity”. Because anytime I have anything to do with it thats exactly what I do, play with it. I agree to about the quality of goods at walmart compared to a regular hardware store, by the way did someone say medications? BOY can I help you out. mike

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

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