LumberJocks

The 'Stuff' that get's in the way.

  • Advertise with us

« back to Coffee Lounge forum

Forum topic by MarkTheFiddler posted 10-20-2012 06:08 PM 724 views 0 times favorited 14 replies Add to Favorites Watch
View MarkTheFiddler's profile

MarkTheFiddler

1784 posts in 845 days


10-20-2012 06:08 PM

My garage is a total mess. There are projects in there that can potentially keep me busy for the next year. I have to clear a path just to walk through the garage. I need the garage so I can work on all those future projects. Everything has a layer of sawdust on it. Nasty!!

I want a nice dill press, a workbench, great table saw with run off, cabinets for my tools, a planer, a DUST COLLECTOR and space to work. I shouldn’t buy any of those things until I have a place to put them. I know some of these items will improve my accuracy and make my passion for woodworking so much easier.

And then I get an idea that I want to pursue, I dive into it. The mess get’s worse. I didn’t pay my dues and do what was important first. Now I’m in it just a bit deeper. At some point, I may need to purge myself of all the stacked projects and move on. I might have to say – ‘it’s just too late to do anything about it’. I’m getting awfully close to that place.

I have got to put aside my ‘grand’ and ‘gotta do it now’ ideas and knock the stacked up projects out. I have got to invest the time in those projects that may be far less gratifying than my new ideas.

That’s just my metaphor for what’s really on my mind. I have to give one more so I can bring it home well (I hope).

A very good friend of mine was an outstanding fiddler. He was a state champion. He made his living from playing in Branson Missouri. He lived his dream and never tried to grow up.

Despite his amazing playing, he had a really hard time reading music. He was very slow at it. He got so good at fiddling that he could just hear something and go with it. He was so incredibly talented with his “ear”. He never went back and learned to read music and he defended himself by saying ‘WHY – I don’t need it! Forget it!’

I’m going to very humbly say that for some reason he loved my fiddling. I can not tell you how honored I was by his opinion of me.

He lived his life for self gratification. That life played hell on his liver and he started to get really sick. He started asking me to play his Texas gigs. He started to miss out on other activities he had planned as well but he would show to some of them. You could tell he was struggling. By his skin color and eyes, you could see that it was getting close.

One day he sent me a message. Mark, I just wrote a tune called Texas Mark C. I tried to capture what I love about your fiddlin’ but it’s got a lot of my stuff in there too. I’ll send you a recording in a couple of days.

2 days later. Mark, I’m stuck in a hospital bed, I have my laptop with me so I can do a little typing. You have got to hear this new tune! I can’t wait to get out of here!

My friend never left the hospital. My friend never learned to read or write music. The last song he conceived was gone. He wanted desperately to share it. I didn’t travel the 8 hours to go see him and transcribe. I could have been performing his final gift. I could have received that honor. Its … Gone. It’s gone because he decided he didn’t need to take care of his stuff. It’s gone because, I didn’t get around to taking care of my stuff and going to see him.

Is there Stuff in your way? If you have EVER been defensive about your woodworking, there is stuff in your way. If you find yourself on the defensive at all, there is stuff in your way.

We do the wrong thing all the time. We do a lesser job than we hope for all the time. We are flawed. At some point all us have rationalized our flaws. I understand a great many things about rationalizing and self preservation is usually at the root of it all. Rationalization is like taking an orange crayon and filling in a blemish on an otherwise beautiful cherry table. Everyone can see the shoddy repair but we convince ourselves that it’s not there – mostly. When someone starts to rub away that crayon, we get fired up. We want to convince people that the crayon is just right. We try to change their thinking. If they don’t change their thinking or they don’t back down, we get angry. We lash out. We convince ourselves that they are jerks. We throw away the person who might be the one person who can make a lasting and positive change in our lives because they said “Is that a crayon mark?”

How many of us have submitted a project or other photo diaries where we picked the very best angle? The parts that were not perfect, didn’t make the cut. Do you think it’s limited to our photos here? We are either hiding our flaws or defending them. Either way, it’s stuff that get’s in the way.

If we threw out all the stuff in our garages because we couldn’t get around to it and things were just too difficult to manage otherwise, it’s permanent. We can’t throw out our flaws or the stuff we carry around. It’s not a garage and we can’t sweep it out. We have to go back and take care of all those undone projects to clean out the garage.

If your stuff hurts because someone is rubbing away that crayon, try to think about it. Instead of being angry – you could say a multitude of things. “Yeah – that blemish, I don’t have the skills to fix it.” “I got impatient and I just left it there.” Give a truthful answer that get’s to the core, not blame, of why you left that blemish. Trust me it helps you as well as builds respect and friendships.

Now the crayon rubber could be a normal helpful person and ask – why don’t you try this? If you don’t ever want to go back to that blemish and correct it, tell them “I’m going to leave it just like it is.” Don’t say things like “I think it adds character.” If they persist with being ‘helpful’. Respond with a basic truth “I really don’t have the heart for it. Let’s leave that blemish alone for now.”

If your stuff happens to be a lack of skills. You can either compound it by bringing in the other stuff like pride and rationalization OR you could expose your lack of skills. You could praise somebody with the skills you want to have yourself. If you can never get back around to learning those skills, I get it. Just think about this before you clean out the garage of all the undone projects. Are you one skill away from achieving your masterpiece? Are you one skill away from giving your friend the gift of a new piece of music from your heart.

This website is one of my two all time favorites. The people here are awesome. There are great teachers. There is great talent. There are some beautiful philosophies.

If we can clean some of that stuff out – we may find that we are great students and start doing things we never dreamed of. We could start today. A year from now we can look back and be amazed at what has happened in our lives and what we have accomplished. Seven years from now we might see some folks being hurt and lashing out on a forum website. Then we could create a forum topic from our hearts because we understand where it comes from.

For me – My hope is to be able to rub that crayon mark off the blemish the right way. Maybe I’ll be better at it in seven years. I know I’ve been rubbing a few crayons marks with this post. I’ll always wonder if I did it the right way.

I’d be completely remiss If I didn’t share the following: I still have a boatload of projects in the garage to complete, both metaphorically and literally. I better get at it.

-- Thanks for all the lessons!


14 replies so far

View Richforever's profile

Richforever

739 posts in 2377 days


#1 posted 10-20-2012 06:47 PM

Wow! Well said. Hits home on a lot of levels.

Here’s what I’ve found: (1) always finish projects no matter how long they take otherwise inertia builds up and prevents the finishing of any projects, (2) what your attention is on you are feeding your energy into and will manifest in your experience, (3) only your heart knows what you are supposed to be doing – not your brain cells, and not your feelings, (4) if the feelings are riled up, the brain cells cannot work accurately.

Much success!

-- Rich, Seattle, WA

View DIYaholic's profile

DIYaholic

13572 posts in 1332 days


#2 posted 10-20-2012 07:27 PM

Sorry to hear of the lose of a friend and an opportunity to bring his music to life. However, the past is the past, let it be a life lesson. It is time to move forward and “start cleaning out that garage”.

Good luck.

-- Randy-- I may not be good...but I am slow! If good things come to those who wait.... Why is procratination a bad thing?

View Monte Pittman's profile

Monte Pittman

14210 posts in 995 days


#3 posted 10-20-2012 11:14 PM

Very well said. I have a lot of stuff in my way. Sad.

-- Mother Nature created it, I just assemble it.

View MarkTheFiddler's profile

MarkTheFiddler

1784 posts in 845 days


#4 posted 10-21-2012 01:37 AM

Rich, you said it just as well with fewer words. Thank you for that!

Randy, how true it is. I know that he and I will play that tune together one day. In the meantime, there is always something incredible around the corner. If your eyes are closed by grief and loss, you just might miss. Ther is a time for everything.

Monte my friend, I respectfully disagree with part of your statement. It’s the word sad. I see recognition of our stuff as a victory. You can’t clear out the stuff if you can’t see it. You know I’m not saying anything you didn’t already know. I’m just reminding that discovery can be painful but it’s always a good thing if you can keep from letting it defeat you.

I really appreciate you gentlemen taking the time to read my brain dump. Sometimes it’s real important just to type it out. I’m not going to call anyone out for their humanity. But sometimes I think we humans can be pretty tough on ourselves and others. Maybe what I post will make a tiny difference to someone. I know it helps me to see myself a little more clearly.

-- Thanks for all the lessons!

View MarkSr's profile

MarkSr

215 posts in 707 days


#5 posted 10-21-2012 02:39 AM

Mark, my name is Mark also, and Sr. stands for senior. I am a newbee, (ie: woodworking) and that’s tough at age 65, but it’s something I always wanted to do.

I can remember long ago, my mother told me, her mother, my grandmother really wanted her to name me Mark, (The Lion) she said to my mother. So my grandmother got her wish.

I read all of what you wrote, with your heart and soul open, mind in question and your future acts untold.

I don’t have the answers for taking care of my stuff let alone tell you how to handle yours, but if we go back in time to an old wonderful lady, my grandmother, let the lion come out.

Become the lion and King of your garage and conquer all that stuff and in time you will be sweeping the painted floor of the garage.

On the other hand, you can do what I did. I had a new 10’ x 20’ building put in the back of the house, left all the old stuff in the garage and I am now going to work on starting my new STUFF. (no more lion in me).

Good luck with whichever path you choose, but always keep that heart and soul open, there are a lot of us who listen.

-- Mark, ”...NEWBEE: On the road to learning a lot; but; a lot more to learn…” ("My Granddad used to tell me, if you didn't learn something new today, it just wasn't worth getting out of bed")

View KOVA's profile

KOVA

1311 posts in 1035 days


#6 posted 10-21-2012 02:48 AM

MARCOS QUERIDO:
UN PROVERBIO VASCO DICE: “SI TIENES MUCHO TRABAJO, PUES PONTE A HACERLO”
Y LO QUE ESCRIBES TIENE DE LOS DOS COMPONENTES: HACER Y PENSAR ;-)
EN MI HUMILDE OPINIÓN, SE BALANCEA EN UN 50-50, EL HACER Y EL PENSAR EN LO QUE HICIMOS :-)
NO ENTIENDO MUY BIEN CUÁL ES TU PLANTEO, PERO ME IMAGINO QUE DUDAS…
TITUBEAS EN TOMAR ÉSTE O AQUEL CAMINO, Y ÉSTO, SI BIEN ES MUY HUMANO, ES UNA TRAMPA
QUE SUELE HACERTE TU EGO ;-)
YA HAS VISTO MI TRABAJO Y TE CUENTO QUE LUCHO POR UN EQUILIBRIO ENTRE MI CUERPO, MI MENTE Y MI ALMA, Y
LOS TENGO BIEN INDIVIDUALIZADOS Y TRATO DE CONTROLARLOS: ÉSTO ME LLEVÓ 50 AÑOS JAJAJAJAJAJAJAJAJA
ASÍ QUE SI TENGO QUE TIRARTE UNA PALABRA DE ÁNIMO TE DIRÉ QUE TRANSPIRES TU CAMISETA, QUE TE PONGAS A TRABAJAR SIN DUDAR Y LUEGO DE UN LARGO DÍA DE TRABAJO, YA CANSADO, PIENSES EN LO QUE HAS HECHO: RECUERDA QUE LOS SACERDOTES LAMAS, PRIMERO CANSAN A SUS ALUMNOS PARA QUE LUEGO, AL RECIBIR SUS ENSEÑANZAS DIARIAS, NO TENGAN MUCHA ENERGÍA PARA HACER OPOSICIÓN ;-)
SUERTE AMIGO ;-)

-- KOVA, EL CARPINTERO DEL PUEBLO https://www.facebook.com/pages/El-Carpintero-Del-Pueblo/148976618479733

View lanwater's profile

lanwater

3084 posts in 1591 days


#7 posted 10-21-2012 05:21 AM

I read your post twice.

I think you have much more on your plate than cleaning the garage, l hope I am wrong and it’s only the garage. In that case it’s easy. Buy the table saw and and the tools first; I am sure the garage will get cleaned before they get delivered to your house.

Incidentally this afternoon I was at a friend house who is starting woodworking and his garage is really full. After about a year of waiting he just jumped into it and ordered his tablesaw, DC, planer and so on.
The whole week he has been cleaning on his spare time and today I saw 2/3 of the garage empty ready for the tools.
An electrician will be installing several electrical outlets for him monday. we went over were he will be installing his tools.
I am very sure I will be helping next weekend to assemble the tablesaw and he will be making dust.

just jump in the pool and clean that garage. I think you need a break though.

-- Abbas, Castro Valley, CA

View MarkTheFiddler's profile

MarkTheFiddler

1784 posts in 845 days


#8 posted 10-21-2012 01:58 PM

My friends, Thank you so much for the kind words.

Mark,
It’s really good to meet you. I never heard about Mark the Lion. I really like that. I have ben considering a shed at least to store things. My neighborhood association won’t let me have one. I can maybe get a storage unit but I think I’m vulnerable to the out of sight, out of mind thinking.

Kova,
Mi amigo. Tengo que hacer el repuesto en Engles porque ya sabes que mi Espanol le falta mucho.

Those are awesome words. I totally agree with you. The trials we endure in life can break us. It is from that point of brokeness that we can rebuild into something magnificent. The key component of the rebuild is hope. I have lot’s of hope.

Lanwater,
Your intuition is correct. There are lot’s of things going on in my life. Would it surprise you to know that it’ all wonderful?

-- Thanks for all the lessons!

View MarkTheFiddler's profile

MarkTheFiddler

1784 posts in 845 days


#9 posted 10-25-2012 12:45 AM

Guys,

You may have guessed that the post was not necessarily about me or my garage. It was about us as humans. None the less. I have something for your halloween pleasure.

-- Thanks for all the lessons!

View MarkTheFiddler's profile

MarkTheFiddler

1784 posts in 845 days


#10 posted 10-25-2012 03:58 AM

Progress report. The big brownish couch is in the process of being reupholstered.

-- Thanks for all the lessons!

View lumberjoe's profile

lumberjoe

2833 posts in 905 days


#11 posted 10-25-2012 02:06 PM

Great post Mark, and it comes with a bit of motivation that I desperately need. I’m embarrassed to post pics of my shop, which is why there rarely are any. I am in the same boat as far as JUNK. When we bought this house, the previous owners were hoarders (like you see on TV). The garage is still packed to the rafters with junk. I could easily fill a 50 yard dumpster and then some. I have it all pushed up against the walls (floor to ceiling, about 2 feet deep). I have about 50% of my total space usable. I needed garage space desperately to finish a home renovation project, so I cleared out an area with plans to really clean it later. That turned into a woodworking hobby, in which I did more adding to the clutter than removal of the clutter. I hope to have it cleaned out before the snow comes so I can have a nice, usable space.

In regard to other obstacles, I’m not kidding myself. I do not posses the natural ability to be an expert craftsman. The best I can hope for is to master the basic mechanics and churn out “acceptable” projects. Nothing I make will be an heirloom. I really envy people like Paul M (shipwright). I would love to create projects of that caliber, but as I mentioned, I do not have the natural ability. But I am OK with that.

With that said, aside from family, there isn’t much in this world that brings me the amount of enjoyment woodworking does. I’ll continue hacking away and secure my place on the throne of mediocrity – with a huge smile of satisfaction :)

-- www.etsy.com/shop/KandJWoodCrafts

View derosa's profile

derosa

1556 posts in 1492 days


#12 posted 10-25-2012 07:46 PM

Nice cannondale. You should treat it better then that, or upgrade, I remember those paint colors from the early 90s. I do see your point though, I’ve got a project I’ve been putting off, everything about it has gone too perfect and now I have to drill some holes and I’ve never been good at doing that, lining up, getting the right size and depth and I’m just not certain about getting it right so now it sits while I make cutting boards to get rid of the scrap in my shop.

-- --Rev. Russ in NY-- A posse ad esse

View MarkTheFiddler's profile

MarkTheFiddler

1784 posts in 845 days


#13 posted 10-26-2012 02:55 AM

Joe, I won’t say much my friend, except that I believe your desire to make art will carry you all the way. The other thing is that we are not the best judges of what is an heirloom. You are the man!

Russ, that poor cannon dale deserves a lot better treatment. I’ll set up a good spot for it. My son doesn’t give that much attention since he bought the schwin mountain bike. My wife has a half decent diamond back I bought her 19 years ago. It’s suffering from the same neglect.

By the way, I am just as nervous about drilling holes. A tiny wiggle or angle and the dowel just doesn’t look right. If you come up with a sure fire method, please let me know.

Now for the funny – yesterday, I got an old couch out of the garage. Today, a six foot soccer net filled the void. ;)

-- Thanks for all the lessons!

View MarkTheFiddler's profile

MarkTheFiddler

1784 posts in 845 days


#14 posted 10-26-2012 02:56 AM

Joe, I won’t say much my friend, except that I believe your desire to make art will carry you all the way. The other thing is that we are not the best judges of what is an heirloom. You are the man!

Russ, that poor cannon dale deserves a lot better treatment. I’ll set up a good spot for it. My son doesn’t give that much attention since he bought the schwin mountain bike. My wife has a half decent diamond back I bought her 19 years ago. It’s suffering from the same neglect.

By the way, I am just as nervous about drilling holes. A tiny wiggle or angle and the dowel just doesn’t look right. If you come up with a sure fire method, please let me know.

Now for the funny – yesterday, I got an old couch out of the garage. Today, a six foot soccer net filled the void. ;)

-- Thanks for all the lessons!

Have your say...

You must be signed in to reply.

DISCLAIMER: Any posts on LJ are posted by individuals acting in their own right and do not necessarily reflect the views of LJ. LJ will not be held liable for the actions of any user.

Latest Projects | Latest Blog Entries | Latest Forum Topics

HomeRefurbers.com

Latest Projects | Latest Blog Entries | Latest Forum Topics

GardenTenders.com :: gardening showcase