Hobbies I would take up: The bottom 5 (part 3)

I’m a guy.  Not a particularly enlightening sentence (and much shorter than I allow most of my students to construct) but true nonetheless.  As a guy, I come with typical guy attitudes and stereotypes.  One of those is guys should be good with tools, have lots of tools, and be able to talk about tools.  This does not discount women.  I have met women who met all three criteria.  I am not inept with tools, and I have quite a few of them, and I have completed a project or two.  However, there will not be a reality show featuring me completing wonderful and complex projects in a quick half hour.  The problem is, sometimes, I wish I could.

I wish I had more time, energy and talent to build wonderful pieces of furniture.  I hate going to stores and seeing the crappy, particle board furniture that is ubiquitous.  I want to build beautiful solid wood pieces.  I’m talking about a new headboard, a new TV stand, wood paneling for the pool room (someday), a coffee table with a train layout in the bottom.  The problem is a lack of pure talent, space, energy, and money. The last being rather important because good wood is rather expensive–and the lack of talent could only lead to beginner mistakes and more purchases of lumber.

At to this that well made, ornate furniture would probably require some carving or filigree (thank you spell checker) and that requires talent.

Someday, I may take this up, starting small of course (bird house, deck) and work my way up to coffee table, or end table.  However, until that time, I guess I will have to shop at better places.


A Manly Way To Shave

By my taste in literature, it is pretty obvious that I was born in the wrong time.  I would probably have fit in better in the late 1800’s or early 1900’s.  It isn’t that I am totally in the wrong place.  I am no luddite, otherwise this blog wouldn’t exist.  I certainly don’t want to throw away all that we have gained, all that has been accomplished,  Rather, sometimes, I just like to look back on how some of the things we did were cool and stylish in a way that they no longer are.  I have heard it called retro, or steam punk, or any number of labels.  Whatever it is, there is a something lost for all that we have gained.

Though it might be preposterous, as someone said to me, but I love the old time shave.  I have been lucky enough to have a full straight razor shave on a couple of occasions.  Despite the apparent danger, I enjoyed it immensely.  If you have never had it done, get a few days of stubble on your chin and go and give it a try.  It is phenomenal.  Your whole face will tingle–in a good way.

While I cannot replicate this at home, and cannot afford to do it frequently, I do what I can.  I eschew the foam can (though I will agree that the gel was a vast improvement over the foam) and go old school at home.  I shave with a brush and soap bowl.  I consider it a more manly shave–that also might have to do with the scent of the soap.

Of course, it doesn’t save time, nor is it cost effective.  However it is time and money well spent.  When I shave, I shave like a man.  Sexist?  Probably, but I revel in the masculinity of it.  If TV shows like Mad Men, or Life on Mars have shown us anything, in the past style was important.

I could spend time pointing out the eco-friendly nature of this pursuit.  Though, really it is not a pursuit or leisure activity, just a fascination with me. (That is what qualifies it for this blog) I could drone on about the lack of chemicals etc.  However, I will just stick to my original idea.  Like a black and white photograph, it is about style, and I personally like it.