The Zoey Blog: Been there...haven't done that... FINAL - COVER UNIVERSE EXPLORERS ORDER

Friday, November 26, 2010

Been there...haven't done that...

Since when did I give a crap about tools, or anything technical, or working with my hands in any way, shape, or form, that didn't involve a writing instrument? The answer is I dunno. What I do know is that I don't make $#!% and hardly ever have. I'm part of the greater masses that this world now educates and sets loose on the world who doesn't contribute a single tangible thing to the planet. I make nothing. I talk a lot. I listen a lot. I help...but I don't create.

That bothers me. It does. I don't want to consume valuable oxygen and yet produce nothing. I'd like to make something, someday.

When I was a small boy I'd float my brother part of my allowance if he did my barn chores, and I kept the rest. I suppose in some ways I was a subcontractor for my parents. All I know is that I did none of the work and got half the money. In high school shop class I paid the class motorhead, Clint, to finish my half complete project. I did half the work and got all of the grade (a better one than Clint I might add). Then gradually, and without even paying so much as a scrap of attention, I slipped into a world of information, not cuts and calouses. It was seemless and as natural and organic as a sunrise.

Sure I worked hard at times in my life. I roofed houses. I cut lumber and hammered nails. I sweat it out on desperate afternoon shifts in the auto plant to help pay for college. I did all that stuff, but the only things I've ever really made with my bare hands are limited to artistic endeavors and words, words, words. That's it.
I feel a little less than whole. I feel a little less than the father that I am. Zoey should have a father who can make something, who can fix something, who can help her when things require manly Daddy type helping. I want to be able to do that.

Here's the thing. I can do it. I surprise myself on a regular basis with the basic skills and logic that it takes to be that dude. The problem is, as it might very well be with anything in my life, I don't have much of a blueprint to follow. Any competent and calloused version of me is going to come almost directly out of my own imagination and ambition. Sure, there are people to ask, but it's almost too late for that. I don't want to be that guy. I'd much rather do whatever it takes to learn on my own and put that education to use, and see where I end up.

I want to fix up the house that I eventually live in.

I want to fix up an old motorcycle and recklessly ride the bugger until it croaks, and then fix it and do it again.

I want someone to marvel at something that I've made and think, "Brian made this?"

I want to do all that stuff and probably a bit more. I have tools, at least the humble beginnins of a collection of said tools. I have abundance. I have occasional ambition. I just need a push, I think, and what's more, a more tangible reason to be pushed. Seeking competence isn't a good enough reason. It's like dieting to lose a little weight for no particular reason.

I think the new year will demand a few things from this fella. I need to pay attention to some stuff that is probably long earning a blister or two, and surprising a few people. I want to make something, and since it might very well be the very first something I've ever really made, it better be something good.

Hmmmm...a strange and wonderous thing to ponder. In the meantime, leave me a alone and let me think about this Tom Foolery. Sorry, I just wanted to use the word Tom Foolery. I don't really talk like that.


Blogger Beth said...

Don't discount your art or your words, their impact is just as strong. My husband can tile our kitchen floor, install countertops, and create a beautiful back splash....but sometimes I just want to know what he is feeling.

The grass is always greener.

November 26, 2010 at 1:01 PM  

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