Wednesday, September 30, 2009


This topic came about as I was lamenting my absurdly poor measuring skills. I can never measure anything with any accuracy. My tolerance for measuring with a ruler is +- 1” per 1/2 linear foot. And that’s gracious. I can’t even measure a 2x4 accurately…I keep coming up with 3”x1 1/2”!

When I was in high school, I was a terrible student. It wasn’t that I couldn’t do the work, I just wouldn’t. Thus, it makes even less sense that I refused to take shop class. There would have been minimal homework, and it probably would have been a lot of fun.

The reason I refused to take shop class is that I was an elitist. I refused to “lower” myself to take a preparatory class for people who would enter the skilled trades. Never mind that many of the people who did take shop class graduated with higher grade points than I did.

Fate has a funny sense of humor, though. When I was 19, my friend Gary got me an internship at a tool and die shop. I worked in the computer aided design department. Ironically, once I saw the marriage between computers and shop equipment, I would spend an absurd amount of time trying to learn what I missed out on by not taking shop class in the first place.

Now…the real kick in the gut is that as an adult, shop classes are pretty hard to come by. If I take classes at LCC, I’ve got to take at least one introduction before getting to the “good” class, and then…I doubt we’re going to get to pour molten aluminum!

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