Friday, August 29, 2008

I Was Bad

When I was about seven or eight I remember watching This Old House with my dad. The episode featured the re-pointing of an old stone farmhouse.

You guessed it. That’s what we lived in. Only I thought I’d practice first on the small smokehouse before tackling such a large project on my own even though there was absolutely no doubt in my mind that I could do it. The whole chipping out of the old mortar and the squishing in with your thumb of the new looked like fun. Hey, I was a kid. What did I know?

One day, not long after viewing the program I was left to my own devices. Really, you think by then they’d have known better, wouldn’t you? I thought to surprise them so I went down to the basement, collected the tools I thought I’d need off my dad’s workbench, my dad’s woodworking bench, and wandered outside to begin.

There I was, happily chipping away with my hammer and my chisel, my wood chisel, and my dad appeared. He came to investigate what the tapping was about. When he saw what I was doing I got my standard head shake with the sigh and the “Barbara Lynn”. He took the tools from me and, as we picked the bits and pieces of cement out of the grass, patiently explained the differences between wood and stone chisels to me.

That ended that project for the time being. Years later my mother and I did finally complete the smokehouse. Let me tell you re-pointing is one hell of a lot of work and not something to be done by a child, no matter how exuberant she is.

Oh in case you’re wondering, yes, my dad got new wood chisels for Christmas that year.


Regina Carlysle said...

You were trying to help though. Bet your dad thought it was sweet and funny.

Kelly Kirch said...

LOL!! You were one ambitious kid. The smallest idea and you're off taking care of it. That's the stuff of great leaders.

Amarinda Jones said...

To be honest, Barbara Lynn, you were probably as cute as a button as a kid but I suspect also a pain in the arse. Good to see that hasn't changed

J. J. Hebert said...

Ambitious kid is right!