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To-do list

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As a woodworker, I’m also the household handyman. And with that title, it’s always something.

I don’t mind fixing things. I like it, in fact. As long as you regard fix-it tasks as “projects” they acquire attributes of what you do in the shop, so even minor repairs can have the same sense of accomplishment. I also like saving money – I can easily do, without so much as cracking open the Yellow Pages, things that a lot of people have to pay other people to do.

But easy fix-it projects are easy to put off and tend to stack up. Take, for example, these three from my to-do list.

That first is a bedroom door that’s shifted just enough with house settling that the lockset plunger doesn’t quite hit the opening in the strike plate. I need to re-mortise and lower that strike plate slightly so it engages properly. Easy fix. Easily ignored.

Next to it is a birdhouse that’s going to topple pretty much at any moment. I set that post about 10 years ago and it’s obviously rotted. In truth, I have no idea what’s holding it up. It wouldn’t take 30 minutes to cut a new post and remount the thing, but what’s the hurry? It’s winter out there.

Finally, we have an end table in a favorite travel path of our cats. I’ve never seen them do it, but it’s collected scratches in one spot. (I’m thinking they do Zumba there when I’m not looking.) I wanted to refinish that tabletop even before the cats had their way with it, but never have.

Those are just three woodworking-related fix-it items on my list, but there are many more. None are of high importance like, say, a plumbing issue, so they keep getting put off. To get them done I need two things. The first is easy – I just need a bit of a slow period, and since I typically get these between project assignments that’s not the issue. The big thing is when there is a slow period, remembering that I have a list of these things.

It’s that second thing that seems to elude me.



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