Wednesday, March 3, 2010

A Bit Of Love

The rain fell pretty hard throughout last night, which, combined with the somewhat funky mood I’ve been in lately, kept me awake, save for a couple of all-too-short nod-offs. Well, after a few hours, I had to get up and do something … I know myself well enough to realize that no good can come from lying in bed with thoughts unimpeded by daytime distractions racing around. “Screw this,” I said to Indy, as I’m fairly certain she can’t read minds, even when they’re written at the 4th grade level, as mine is, and I wanted to convey to her my frustration over my sleeplessness.

I think she misunderstood, and thought I meant it literally and in reference to Plastic Polly, because she gave me that “dude, you seriously need help. Or a girlfriend … a LIVE one, maybe … just a thought, loser …” look and lumbered out of the bedroom. I got up and explained to her that it was just a phrase to express my exasperation over not being able to sleep, and was going to get up and do something rather than just lie there. She then gave me her oft-used “that doesn’t make you any less of a loser, loser …” look, bit me, and went back to her couch.

I decided to go clean up the workbench in my garage, as I’ve never really been one to put away tools after I use them, a trait that causes me no small amount of frustration, but that I can’t seem to change. Perhaps someday I’ll succeed, and my life will be an idealistic utopia in which the screwdrivers are always hanging on the pegboard according to size (largest on the left) and gummy bears and Swedish fish will never stick to my teeth. Until then, every few months, I’ll clean up the shop at 4 in the morning.

Unfortunately, things remain in disarray, because my attention was quickly captured by the Rusty Coffee Can Full Of Old Drill Bits (RCCFOODB). The RCCFOODB is a mish-mash of mostly smaller bits, but also holds a few countersinks, a couple of Phillips/flathead screwdriver bits, even an old 4mm allen wrench. These are the venerable warriors of my bit collection, and are cherished no less than my beloved biscuit joiner.

It’s not like I don’t appreciate the other bits. The Stanley 4 pack of lip-and-spurs are very useful when I need a clean cut using the drill press, but they reside in their original case, hanging on their own peg. I imagine that they yearn for the day that I drop the case, plastic shards exploding across the concrete floor, so that they too may join their envied brethren in the RCCFOODB.

And the fucking spade bits … they stand erect in their custom holder, all self-important, thinking they’re all-that-and-a-can-of-spam, sneering down their shafts at what they see as the riff-raff. Well, you know what, spade bits? You’re good for one thing … making flat recesses for the washers on lag screws. Fucking lag screws. That’s IT. Oh, and that custom holder? It’s a scrap of 2x4, with holes drilled in it … holes drilled using the bits from the RCCFOODB. So get over yourselves. Assholes.

Me, I’ll take the RCCFOODB over just about anything. They’re an undiscriminating, rag-tag bunch of castoffs thrown together by life’s fickle fate, having too much fun to care what anyone else thinks or what they look like. Masonry bit? “Come on in, you fat sunovabitch!” Two-foot-long bit used to drill lamps? “You da man, Stretch! Easy, big fella … don’t tip us over! Wooo!”

I suspect there will come a day when I’m at the hardware store, and I’ll buy a spade bit, unsure of whether I have that size at home, and when I discover that I do, I’ll slide the old one into the RCCFOODB, and I’ll bet you dollars to donuts that he’ll be welcomed just as warmly as any other.

Because that’s the kind of place that the Rusty Coffee Can Full Of Old Drill Bits is.

As I said, the shop remains remarkably similar in appearance to bombed-out Beirut, but I made my way back to the bedroom, and with the RCCFOODB next to me on the nightstand, finally slept like a baby.

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