Messing around

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After six months of steady use, I love my upgraded dust-collection system. However, my shop is still a pigsty.

Woodworking dust in my shop is down to a minimum, thanks to my new collector and ductwork. Where I used to have mounds of sawdust – plus that nasty powder-like stuff – now I need to clean only rarely. Check that. Now I need to clean DUST only rarely, but everything else is just as cluttered as it ever was.

I’ve noted before that I’m a messy worker (another of the many reasons I couldn’t be a contractor), because I tend to never put anything back after using it. Consider: I must own no fewer than 15 regular screwdrivers of a similar type and size. It’s not unusual at the conclusion of a project, or even just a day’s work in the shop, to go for a screwdriver and not find a single one where it’s supposed to be. That’s because in the course of working I’ve gotten a screwdriver, used it, and set it down. Then, when I need a screwdriver again I can’t find the one I just had and I get a “new” one, use it and set it down. Repeat, etc., till every screwdriver I own is scattered somewhere in the shop.

Now, multiply that by other commonly used tools. Pliers, scrapers, pencils, sanding blocks, rags, you name it, there must be dozens everywhere in the shop, each set down where I last used it, and then quickly covered by something else I set down.

It’s frustrating to the point of madness, but I see no immediate solution. I’ve been working like that for decades, so I doubt I’ll change now.

Do you suppose there’s a 12-step program for this?

A.J.

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