Woke with a terrible headache Tuesday. Weather was coming in and this time of year is not the kindest to my sinuses.
But there was sunshine and a project already begun, so I got up, took OTC pain meds, had coffee and a little breakfast, and got to work.
Set up the compound sliding miter saw (I have come to really like it -- I used table saws for years, starting back when we ran them without any guards, and the sliding compound miter is easier to use and much easier to set up for large pieces) and a support, knocked out a couple of brace sections, then rigged to cut the sides, 95" tall.
"Eight-foot" boards vary a little in length and over the years, I have settled on trimming them an inch short of nominal. It has been a good compromise. The ceilings at Roseholme Cottage are an inch or two over eight feet, which allows good clearance. The shelves I'm working on now are 11" deep and I may end up having to trim corners to stand them up.
It takes a little while to set up to trim longer lengths of wood. I work outdoors, and the back sidewalk is my longest level area with a hard surface. When I do woodwork, getting everything measured, lined up and clamped down takes ten or twenty times as long as the cutting. I spent years growing up with parents who could do this sort of thing by eye and a few casual measurements (and who were honestly puzzled that other people could not*), but I don't have that knack; if I'm concentrating on cutting a straight line, it inevitably turns out to be at the wrong angle, in the wrong place, or I will have cut clean through something else as well (most infamously, a tabletop). Doing it the way that works for me, there are long intervals of silence and then a quick "Bzzzzzzp-zing!" as I run the saw, not needing to focus on anything but making a clean cut.
It's slow. By the time I had both sides cut to length, the skies were darkening, and by the time I had unclamped and stowed away the saw, the wood blocks to prop the long ends of the boards at saw-table height and all the small tools, the wind was rising and it was obvious we were in for a storm. To make matters worse, my head was aching with ever-greater intensity.
Once I had gathered up the remaining tools and supplies -- with no little haste -- and had put them away, the pain in my ears was so bad, I could barely keep my eyes focused. I took more acetaminophen and aspirin, and went back to my bedroom where I crawled under the covers and kind of collapsed. The tomcats joined me and we dozed away most of the afternoon, me hurting and the cats purring.
I'll finish the shelves another day.
* My parents were extraordinary people, each of them among the youngest of large families of extraordinary people, and for them, that was "ordinary." Both were highly successful in their careers despite never attending college. I don't know if they ever really grasped just how far out on the edge of the curve they were, even when we all -- for fun! -- took the IQ test that accompanied a Reader's Digest article about Mensa and every single family member qualified to apply, most by a quite comfortable margin. Both of my parents had picked up basic skills like cooking, carpentry, gardening and raising small animals so early in life that they were honestly mystified that other people, including their own children, didn't "just know" them or could not quickly work them out from first principles.
I have gathered that their own parents did not want their children feeling superior or "putting on airs;" neither family was well-to-do or especially well-connected. But just a little more self-awareness of their giftedness probably would have helped them cope better with people who struggled to keep up with them.
BUILDING A 1:1 BALUN
5 months ago