Sunday, August 28, 2005

Random Thoughts Scribbled On Sandpaper


PHOTO: Hurricane damage to St. Augustine beach dune system. This is from a storm in my past...Not KATRINA.

Last night, I went out to the little wood shop I have to trim a piece of wainscoting on the table saw. Just about the time I finished, one of the outer bands from Hurricane KATRINA passed over us and there was much lightening and heavy tropical rainfall. So there I was trapped in my little barn. It was too far to dash back to the house and there are worse places to be trapped, so I made the best of it.

In the corner is a carving I had roughed out some time ago. I had set it aside due to the frenetic pace of dealing with job, family, and other priorities. So I sit on my stool, grab some sandpaper, and my carving tools and begin again as the rain beats down in sheets.

I kept thinking about the blogger folks whose creations I read every day. Some are out of harms way, but quite a few are going to have this storm affect them directly. Strange to worry about folks you haven't "met", yet isn't that what we should be doing...caring about everyone. Still, caring about "everyone" does get exhausting and ...diluted somehow. It's nice to have some focus...some targets to aim your care at.

The carving is a cane, with seastars and sanddollars twisting around it in relief. I pick out a seastar that needs finishing and begin...

The nice thing about carving is you can think about other things even as you concentrate on the task at hand. The storm track was no longer a threat to us, but it had just missed Thingfish23 and seemed to be aiming for Rurality out in Alabama. The good old Coriolis effect was going to turn KATRINA and carry her over most of the blogs I link to, and others I read, but just haven't put in the links yet.

Sanding is my least favorite part of carving. I try to break it up with actual carving or detailing...but the sanding can not be ignored. So I rub the wood with 220 grit and eventually a rhythm is established.

There seem to be alot of nature blogs coming out of the Appalachians, too many to list here, but I read 'em. Even if KATRINA passes nearby, they will receive heavy rains. Here in Florida, stormwater piles up, but in the mountains it flows with destructive power and so I worry a bit about those hilltop writers near her path.

Benjamin Franklin said something to the effect that "Beer was proof God loved us". As I turn this piece of cherry and sand smooth my tool marks, I think you could say the same thing about wood. If it didn't exist, could we have dreamed of a material so amazing? Enough sanding. I grab the wood burner and begin giving details to a sanddollar.

Will the storm flood Swamp4me's millpond and what about those hummingbirds? Is RM's new home ready for tropical rains? Poor thing had an earthquake last week, does she get flooding rains this week?

I finish burning the last sanddollar's aboral pattern and notice that the tropical band has passed and the rain has slackened. Now what was it I came out here for?

15 comments:

Hick said...

I'm glad to hear you made it through the storm. What a lovely post.

Floridacracker said...

Hick,
Thanks. Hey I thought you had gone wagon training again :) Welcome back to Pure Florida. This is a good time to be in the western mountains. We are actually getting storm bands now, even though the storm is off New Orleans at this moment. It's big.
You'll appreciate this...I'm deep frying whole split chickens on the porch as I blog. Rubbed 'em with cajun seasoning first. I'll let you know...

swamp4me said...

I know what you mean about worrying about our invisible e-friends out there. It is odd how attached you can become to people you will, in all likelihood, never meet face to face.

Floridacracker said...

Swamp,
10-4. It's the strangest thing.
Nice tho...

barryg said...

I stumbled onto your site yesterday and like the refrences to home. I once lived at Mill Creek and went to St.Ketterlinus High in 1956. My uncle owned the gen. store right next to sunland gardens farm.

rm said...

Just lately I've been musing about this online community. I am fortunate to be a part of a strong and wonderful town and community, but the connection with folks through the blogging world is so nice and so supportive. And so interesting!

roger said...

glad you're ok. it is an interesting connection thru the internet to people all over. tho i haven't seen your face (just that smiley guy) you do put a face of a sort on both the ups and downs of a place far away, as do the many other bloggers in that area.

i, for one, would like to know more about "deep frying whole split chickens." i can imagine, but pictures would be great.

Floridacracker said...

DPR,
Deep frying whole turkeys is very popular in the south. My fryer is a little small for that so I experimented on the turkey's smaller cousin. It worked great and I actually did take a photo which will be a future post.

Floridacracker said...

barryg,
Welcome! I went to Ketterlinus also, but by then the highschool had been built and Ketterlinus was a junior high. Thanks for stopping by.

Floridacracker said...

rm,
These certainly are amazing times...being able to converse around the world and be your own (unpaid) publisher. I hope your ground is calmer than last week.

Rexroth's Daughter said...

This is a beautiful post. I like how the sandpaper and carving was interlaced with your concern about our fellow bloggers in the path of the storm. It was like a meditation on beauty and fellowship.

the Contrary Goddess said...

Katrina is about to get here (Tuesday) and we soooo welcome her -- it has been too dry and only a hurricane can replenish our garden at this point.

I really like your blog and can't wait to have time to check out some of you other folks who are here too!

'Cepting I woulda ate that 'gator!

Floridacracker said...

RD,
Thank you. Maybe if I was a better carver, I would be more focused on the wood and not think about other things while working the wood.

Goddess,
Welcome to Pure Florida! That is an amazing horse in your photo. Come back any time.

thingfish23 said...

Thanks for the quality thoughts, FC. It looks like Florida got a pass, for once. But, man, I watched some of the news last night...

What a whopper of a storm. I'm still waiting to find out if I will be dispatched to help with "cleanup" duty.

Floridacracker said...

Thing,
I can imagine how "pleasant" that will be. Good luck.