Popular Woodworking 2009-11 № 179, страница 6
Out on a Limb
BY CHRISTOPHER SCHWARZ, EDITOR
Learn How. Discover Why. Build Better.
Getting Worked By the Wood
he garbage disposal was clogged with a chicken bone. And after three unsuccessful attempts to grind up the bone (and a little profanity for good measure), I reached my hand into the slimy hole.
What I pulled out was my beloved Sinn 656 wristwatch, which had gotten knocked into the sink while I was rinsing the dinner dishes.
The watch's crown was battered, its waterproof seal was broken and within a couple weeks the watch stopped ticking.
Normally, this would be a $30 fix. Go buy a Timex at Target and be done with it. But a lifetime of woodworking has made that strategy impossible.
We woodworkers normally view the craft as an activity where humans perform brutal acts on dead trees to shape their dried carcasses to our liking.
However, what we rarely take note of is how working with this raw material changes us.
My love of handmade furniture changed the type of car I drive. When I was shopping for a used car last year, my research went way beyond brand names and dove deeply into the type of engine, plus which factory it was assembled in. Some factories take more care in bolting down your water pump than others. Care counts.
Woodworking has changed the beer I drink. I found a local brewery that sells its beer in half-gallon glass growlers. The beer is fresher, cheaper ($5.99) and there's no wasted cardboard, bottlecaps or bottles to
recycle. Plus, I know the name of the guy who developed the recipe.
Woodworking has changed what I hang on our walls at home. I've found a network of self-taught artists, many with disabilities , who produce work of astounding beauty that is made with care and detail. Like woodworkers, they produce these works despite an industry of mass-produced Matisse posters.
But most of all, woodworking has taught me to reject things that are disposable and wasteful and embrace things that are well-made, even if they are less sophisticated or sometimes more expensive.
To some, this might sound like a political column. I assure you it's not. My personal politics don't fit any party's platform. I frustrate both my liberal and conservative friends at every dinner party.
Instead, this column is an acknowledgement that working with wood has changed me more than any institution or individual has ever managed to.
And I need no more evidence of that than what I did after I fished my watch from the sink. I sent it out to be fixed, even though I could buy 10 watches for the price of the repair. My Sinn isn't flashy, but it's so well made that I could never pitch it.
And that is exactly what I want future generations to think of my furniture. It is simply too good to ever throw away. PW
How can I contact customer service with questions regarding my subscription, including a lost or damaged issue?
Visit popularwoodworking.com/customer service. Or write to Popular Woodworking, P.O. Box 420235, Palm Coast, FL 32142-0235. Or, if you prefer the telephone, call 386-2463369 and a customer service representative will be happy to help you.
When does my subscription expire?
The date of your subscription expiration appears on your magazine mailing label, above your name. The date indicates the last issue in your subscription.
Can I get backissues of Popular Woodworking?
Back issues are available while supplies last. Visit popularwoodworking.com/backissues. Or if you know the exact month and year of the issue you want, call our customer service department toll-free at 800-258-0929 to order.
What if I want more information about the projects and tools I read about in Popular Woodworking?
For all editorial questions, please write to Popular Woodworking Editorial, 4700 E. Galbraith Road, Cincinnati, OH 45236. Or e-mail email@example.com.
Does Popular Woodworking offer group discounts?
Group discounts are available by special arrangement with the publisher. For more details, send an e-mail to Debbie Paolello at firstname.lastname@example.org or call 513-531-2690 x11296.
Our Privacy Promise to You
We make portions of our customer list available to carefully screened companies that offer products and services we believe you may enjoy. If you do not want to receive offers and/or information, please let us know by contacting us at:
List Manager, F+W Media, Inc. 4700 E. Galbraith road Cincinnati, OH 45236
Safety is your responsibility. Manufacturers place safety devices on their equipment for a reason. In many photos you see in Popular Woodworking, these have been removed to provide clarity. In some cases we'll use an awkward body position so you can better see what's being demonstrated. Don't copy us. Think about each procedure you're going to perform beforehand.
8 ■ Popular Woodworking November 2009
PHOTO BY THEAUTHOR