Sunday, May 9, 2010

Ignoring This

I looked at this blog tonight and realized I have to change my reading list and I have to post more. I am trying to remember what I did last week and after drawing a blank, I remembered the neurologist and the physical and putting endless bags of topsoil in the new raised bed and cleaning the house before we entertained Maddy's new beau. Maybe I'm not slacking off that much.

I have also been drawing and redrawing a frame in SketchUp trying to remember and figure out everything I learned. My computer or its operator has a glitch in making the timber frame joints, so anyone who knows me, knows I have to do this until I get it working right. Mike says it is a problem with the video driver in the machine, which is fine. It may be the case for some of the error, but it doesn't explain inconsistent results, so I continue to try and try again.

I have also been reading a lot on timber framing. One author is Jack A. Sobon, an architect who graduated from RISD and timber frame historian. Jack initially built his house with out wiring and works with out power tools. I have heard stories about those "architecture students" from my daughter. They apparently work way too hard. I also have to finish Green Metropolis, by David Owen. It is very enjoyable, but like The Whole Earth Pragmatist, runs opposite so many things I would like to believe in. I was raised with the good wholesome belief that living in the country and building green houses, driving a small car and growing ecologically friendly food was good for Mother Earth. Stewart Brand debunks any of those beliefs, after building them up providing Whole Earth Catalogs in my youth. Owen only suggests that cities are more earth friendly and points out how we got to the sprawl with the help of Henry Ford and Frank Lloyd Wright among others. Where is Jane Jacobs to weigh in when you need her? I doubt she would look kindly on timber framers, but I will have to read her now and see.

Some other books in the queue first. While I was in Massachusetts, Yvon Chouinard arrived on the doorstep with Let My People Go Surfing. I started reading his buddy Royal Robbins' Basic Rockcraft as a kid and then found Chouinard's classic Climbing Ice. I dabbled some with climbing rock and ice and sadly gave it up at the insistence of an ex-wife after the children were born. I would have done better giving up the wife much earlier and kept on climbing. It might have prevented a stroke.

Anyways I am looking forward to Let My People Go Surfing when we get back from Minneapolis next week. It is the American Society for Indexing annual meeting and I am joining my bride for some real fun. It actually should be fun and we'll get to see some new sights. But that's a couple days off. Back to drawing timber frames in SketchUp. I will figure this out...

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