The boomerang effect

It’s June. That can mean only three things… The Atlantic Hurricane season begins on the first, summer begins on the 20th and students are graduating.

Some are being promoted from elementary to middle school, while others are being promoted from middle to high school. Those graduating high school and college are contemplating further education while others are prepared to begin their careers and strike off on their own.

In these challenging economic times, though, it’s tougher than ever for recent grads to get their feet under them, and many have to move back home with their parents. Hey, it happens. Those parents who may have said tearful goodbyes four years ago now have to readjust their home situation to cope with a returning adult child.  Sure, it’s temporary, but that wasn’t the plan to begin with.

Why bring this up?  Well, I’ve found that many of the pieces I have built have – uhhh – found their way back home. Yeah, a bunch of projects I have built over the years – specifically for the art contest that’s held ever winter at my office – have failed to launch to new and exciting destinations.

And, to think I was so spoiled the first few years of the competition.  For my sculpted contemplation bench, the judges for the contest were wondering just how much I was going to sell it for. But, that sucker isn’t for sale… it’s the proof I have that I worked with Marc Spagnuolo at a woodworking school all those many years ago! Today, it sits in our back family room in front of my collection of woodworking books.

When it came to my pagoda box, I had a buyer lined up for it even before the show was over.

The Fujiwhara Chest?  It now graces the bedroom of my friends’ daughter in a place of high honor.

The base for Mars and Venus Rising?  It’s down the street at another friend’s home – right alongside the Nakashima-Inspired bench.

That’s where my luck started to run out. The next year’s offerings had their issues.  The sculpture that rested on the base for Position of Strength fell over and shattered into hundreds of pieces. That left me with the base made of flame birch and walnut. Now, don’t get me wrong, it’s pretty … and one day, I’m going to put a glass table top on it. But, right now, it sits, ignominiously in my shop, slowing being covered in sawdust.

While Position of Strength sits in the garage, Centered found its way back to the house, but in a nicer place. My wife liked it so much – especially the fouled-up colored epoxy inlay – that it now occupies an honored place in front of the front windows in my living room. More often than not it ends up covered in books and papers, but when we spiff the place up for company, it comes out in all of its natural beauty.

And, my wall-hanging cabinet … it technically didn’t make it back home. It sits on a table in my office reminding me of two very important lessons … from here on out, I’m  going to have to ensure I have a place to put my entries if they fail to launch, and I’m only building SMALL pieces for the contest!


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