Thursday, May 14, 2009

Here I am! (Waving)

No, over here!

And there I am, suddenly back from Google's mysterious glitch. No explanation of course. But I poke my screen-name & password into the hole in the hollow tree, just the way I've been doing it for however long it has been. And suddenly there I am! The magic mirror is working again. Captain Midnight's De-Coder Ring whirls into action and all your Secret Messages come tumbling from the chute. Yes, you may use rocker arms of different lengths in the same engine. Then a pile of questions for which I don't know the answer... and tell them so. And another pile of airplane questions, most of which will take some time to answer correctly because I no longer trust my personal Memory Bank since my stroke and flying is one hobby that can get you killed.

Kinda like being knocked off the Internet.

Which produced a new email address for me:

Yeah, it costs money. But the money buys you names and telephone numbers of people you can call when the system goes suddenly klunk! in the night and leaves you with nothing but a blinking cursor and a beige box that blows warm air on your shoe.


I have a new hole in my back. It was put there on purpose by a Jason M. Miller, a physician who specializes in Pain Management. That is, in reducing it if you've got some, of which I do.

The hole was made by a tool the size of a knitting needle into my Epidural Space, which I understand is a fluid-filled void around the spinal column. The purpose of the hole was to inject Narcotics and Steroids into that space, causing the nerves which run through it to stop carrying their Pain Signals.

So howz it working out? Eh... sorta same-old same-old. But better, I think. The Killer Spasms haven't shown themselves but they are so painful that I'm afraid to risk their ire by saying they are gone for good.

There is still a limit to how long I can stand up and walk around. But the pain engendered by that activity is definitely less. It is still too painful to push it; when the Pain arrives I've got to sit down or I will soon find myself on my hand & knees. But the pain occurs lower down than before. And its intensity is definitely less. So I think it's fair to say that some Progress has been made.

Is this topic of any interest? It is to me, since the Pain is like a prison sentence. Were it not for the Pain I would be doing more things in the shop. But it may be of no interest to you. As it now stands the Pain is my excuse and explanation for not doing a lot of things I was doing before; things I shared with many of you and which I know you were interested in.


Have you read 'The Ugliest Toolbox'?

It is the first article I uploaded when I created this blog. Somewhere in this blog are the illustrations showing how to cut & drill the pieces of metal which, when riveted together, become a clunky but serviceable toolbox, large enough to hold a tin-benders basic kit of tools. The late Jim Holland and I are guilty of showing local Boy Scouts how to make the toolbox, which was a bit of a scam since what we wanted to teach them was basic sheet-metal work, including riveting. And we did, for a couple of years back when I was still in the Navy.

I mention it here because there were two groups of guys making toolboxes when Google pulled my plug. I eventually got re-connected but a strange thing happened to one of the groups. They decided the toolbox was too basic and stopped working on them, which kinda reminded me of the Ugliest Toolbox.

I suppose there are such things that are too simple to justify our attention but the most valuable lesson contained in the Ugliest Toolbox is how to build an airplane, a house or anything else. And if that sounds impossible, it's not.

Wanna know the best kept secret of the ages? Wanna know how you can build your own airplane? Well... okay, I'll tell ya. But you got to promise to keep it a secret.

Here it is: Do something every day. That is, something leading toward the completion of whatever it is you're trying to do, such as building a house, overhauling an antique car, building an airplane from scratch... It doesn't matter what you're building. Or rather, trying to build. The secret of success is to do something every single day. It doesn't matter what it is... drilling a single hole, setting a single rivet or whatever, what matters is that you Do It! Every day. No exceptions nor excuses.

Here's why it works: Every project has a finite number of steps. If you do even one of those steps every day you will eventually run out of things to do; the project will be finished.

No, you can't make bargains with yourself, such as promising to do five things next Saturday instead of one thing every night for the coming week. That's not allowed. You have to do something every single day.

What you're doing here is developing the habit of doing something every day.

Yeah, it sounds kinda wacky. But it works.