We are a commune of inquiring, skeptical, politically centrist, capitalist, anglophile, traditionalist New England Yankee humans, humanoids, and animals with many interests beyond and above politics. Each of us has had a high-school education (or GED), but all had ADD so didn't pay attention very well, especially the dogs. Each one of us does "try my best to be just like I am," and none of us enjoys working for others, including for Maggie, from whom we receive neither a nickel nor a dime. Freedom from nags, cranks, government, do-gooders, control-freaks and idiots is all that we ask for.
I had to run home this afternoon to meet with my chimney guy. Actually, not my chimney guy, but my semi-local sheet-metal guy.
I never had a sheet-metal guy, but I'm glad to have one now. He can make whatever you need in his wood-heated shop in an old mill building in CT, and he will install what he makes, too. Cheerfully.
Our old farmhouse has three fireplaces. We needed some new flashing, new collars, caps, etc. to keep the rain and the animals out. That was a piece of cake for the good old guy. He promised me that his patch-up job would outlive me, which isn't saying much. In olde Yankeeland, everything is a patch-up job.
I chatted up his 20-something black assistant. He said "Man, we have a beautiful shop. We can make anything - copper, aluminum, stainless, plain steel - whatever you want. Ducts, flashing, roofs, gutters, whatever. Square ducting, round ducting, whatever you need. We have the technology. We built our own wood stove too."
"What do you do for wood?" I asked.
"Oh, our tree guy friends just dump it off for us. Saves them a dump fee. We cut and split it ourselves. We load the stove up at night, and it's as warm as toast when we come to work in the morning."
Great to hear about people who can still make things.
Better keep his name quiet or the enviros will be after him
for air pollution, burning wood causes lung disease.
Please support my new bumper sticker,
" THINK GREEN"..... LIBERALS AND INVIRONMENTALISTS....
MAKE WONDERFUL GARDEN FERTILIZER...
In the light of this analysis Carlyle's rhapsody on tools becomes a prosaic fact, and his conclusion—that man without tools is nothing, with tools all—points the way to the discovery of the philosopher's stone in education. For if man without tools is nothing, to be unable to use tools is to be destitute of power; and if with tools he is all, to be able to use tools is to be all-powerful. And this power in the concrete, the power to do some useful thing for man—this is the last analysis of educational truth.
Charles H. Ham, Mind and Hand: manual training, the chief factor in education (1900)
I used to be a part-time lumberjack when I was in high school and college. Cutting the wood wasn't so bad with a chainsaw. Splitting it was trouble, especially if the hydrolic splitter was broken. Splitting the big trunk pieces with an axe or maul wasn't too tough. But splitting the limbs was brutal, especially if there were knots.