Om Depot

At the top of Mt. Home Depot the DIY guru sits lotus-style on the hard concrete slab and says, "What have you learned, Grasshopper?"

Oh, Great Orange-Apron Teacher, I am grateful for your teaching. I have so much still to learn. Twelve tiny lessons come from first small steps:

  • Surface preparation. Tedious and repetitive motions bring moments of inner peace and superior results. Sanding muffles the self-critical and self-congratulatory inner voices.
  • Frugality. Friends are pleased to help with advice and loans of tools in return for battle stories. Renting is better than buying.
  • Connection to ancestors. Using my father's electric drill makes me feel his spirit with me. I feel connected to all those who worked with their hands.
  • Serendipity. Interesting things happen when I surrender control. Not knowing what will happen next is refreshing.
  • Improvisation. Recognizing my ability to think and respond to challenges in the moment is empowering.
  • Becoming open to change. The purchase of a carpet knife can lead to release from long-held constraints and ancient baggage. 
  • Negative is positive. Proper masking of surfaces and edges brings better results.
  • Protection is respect. I respect myself by wearing safety goggles, masks, boots, and gloves.
  • Work improves job. Intense evening DIY efforts lead to better sleep and increased detachment at my day job.
  • Observation. Noticing the play of light and shadow, the moon, the sound of cicadas while "ensuring adequate ventilation".
  • Patience. Waiting and waiting for coats to dry is a huge self-discipline test.  
  • Thin cows outshine fat cows. Light coats of sealer dry clear, but deep puddles make milky bubbles.

© 2013 Nancy L. Ruder

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