Category Archives: Words

Familiar Territory

I’m often a long way behind the curve with movies, and last night we finally watched 12 Years a Slave. It was an odd confluence to watch this while reading the various justifications for slavery in Aristotle, but it was even weirder to figure out that (according to the movie, at least) that Solomon Northrop […]

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Don’t worry about the government

It’s an old cliche among my more conservative acquaintances that the scariest sentence on the planet is “I’m from the government and I’m here to help.” I’ve never seen things that way, and I suppose I owe that to my father. He was no  political revolutionary, by any means, and his experience with “government” consisted […]

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Social Studies

I’ve rehearsed these stories many times to friends, but I searched and found that I never really wrote them down.  I vividly remember them from high school, around 1974 or 75, I got tossed out of social studies class several times. There were several contentious moments. We were visited by a policeman during one class, […]

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thin line

It’s a thin line between careful and lazy.

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Solnit: I feel a great affinity for photographers and I was told gently early on that I wasn’t  good at interpreting paintings and I never had a real affinity for them. You have to get into the cult of painting, both the craft of it and the lineage of it, neither of which interest me very […]

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Education of a Woodworker

At the utmost, the active minded young man should ask of his teachers only the mastery of his tools. The young man himself, the subject of education, is a certain form of energy; the object to be gained is economy of his force; the training is partly the clearing away of obstacles, partly by the […]

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Simple Emotions

Blessed are all simple emotions, be they dark or bright! It is the lurid intermixture of the two that produces the illuminating blaze of the infernal region “Rappaccini’s Daughter,” Nathaniel Hawthorne’s Tales (Norton) p. 195

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Talking Shop

You won’t find Talking Shop on many woodworker’s “must read” lists. I started it a while ago and put it aside, once I got the gist of it’s thesis. I was enjoying it, but it just didn’t seem relevant to the other craft reading I was doing until now. I thought of it soon after […]

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The Artisan of Ipswich

I just finished The Artisan of Ipswich by Robert Tarule, and I’ve got mixed feelings about it. Paul Sellers mentioned it as one of his top ten, and Chris Schwarz has reviewed it postively as well. While it was informative, it just set off a bunch of irritations in me. I’d still recommend it to […]

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A crafty spatial aide de mémoire

To explain my work for you, I have to build a room for you. A creative room with four walls which represents my boundaries, and actually my greatest freedom. Freedom of expression is not working without limits. Those limits are tools and material but within them I have incredible variety and diversity, and there I […]

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