Tool of the Week

….or Can You Have Too Many Hobbies?

…and these are just the ones that fit into bags or buckets.

I can do a lot of stuff. I have gathered around me the tools and accouterments required to do that stuff. There is (are?) a dozen things I could do on any given day  to keep myself busy and out of trouble. So why is it that many  mornings find me wandering the house  but not settling anywhere to work, or find me sitting in a deck chair listening to the birds? It’s because I just can’t make up my mind. This happened last week and I thought to myself “I need a boot in the (you-know-what)”. “I need one of those spinny things like they used to use at the Mount Cashel Raffle or at fairs; you know, the big wheel with the nails and the flapper that you spin. I think they are called spinning prize wheels. I Googled. They come in table top varieties: spinning prize wheels. You can even get a dry erase one so you can switch up the prizes. Expensive. “I’ll buy a thrift store game and salvage the spinner” I thought. Why is it that the moment you want a game with a spinner there is not one used one in the universe when they were stacked up in the thousands last week? “I’ll make my own” I thought. (I know, I know, making the spinner is just another form of avoidance behaviour).

Surprising how many tools you need to make tools. I found a compass (that was an adventure in itself), I have tons of cardboard (as you well know if you were around for _oxing day) but no protractor. No spinner arms. Google directed me to a site on how to divide a circle into equal portions, eBay showed me where I could buy spinner arms. What did people do before Google and eBay? Here’s the prototype:

Judy P’s deluxe hobby-choice wheel.

After it was done I realized that I left out ‘knitting’, ‘kayaking’, ‘practicing guitar’. Then there’s baking, or restoring furniture, or working on miniatures. There was no category for writing because I try to do that every day. But I could make a wheel just for writing: the sections could have rewrite day, memoir day, short story day, poem day, list day, research day. Or I could make a spinner just for style: Write like Annie Dillard day, write like William Faulkner day, write like a BBC reporter day, write from the point of view of an animal day, write to Dear Abby day. Why, I could even make a spinner to choose what kind of spinner I want to make. There were five sets of arms in the package after all. You get the point. Anyhow, since I have made the thing I haven’t had to use it. The drawing and constructing gave the proverbial boot I needed to pick up a chisel and start carving, a needle to work on quilting, an old sweater to shrink for felting. I love this post-Christmas ‘time to start new things’ period. Hmm, I notice I neglected to include ‘housework’ on any of my wheels.

© Judy Parsons 2017

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