Friday, November 11, 2011

Set the World Straight

If confession is good for the soul,  mine will be shiny soon.  Pull the grayed curtain aside to reveal yet another shabby secret.  I cheated as much as possible on the photos I took of my chickens' buffet table and its cover (see "All You Can Eat or Chicken Dinner"--10/4/11).  Here's the whole story.

 I'm not a perfection-oriented carpenter;  I'm not even a carpenter.  I just like to work with wood.  When I built the buffet, the main concern was getting chicken food out reach of the rats.  And I know I did a darn good job.  But the post was not plumb.  Because of the design, I just couldn't add "straight post" to the list and make it happen.  Not one word of complaint came from any of the hens.  And my husband, who is a carpenter and engineer with an exacting eye for plumb, said it made my project look quaint and farmish.  "Leave it," he said, "the birds, by nature, don't require straight perches."

Before:  roof line askew, verticals not close to matching the coop.
Support post leaning Southeast. 

Then I added the roof to the buffet.  The additional vertical lines became very obviously not plumb with the coop.  Not plumb at all.  And every time I looked out the back window to check on the hens and my serene space of love, there was the sore thumb of a chicken feeder leaning off to the South.  The South, no less!  You know what it means when we say something has gone south.  What an embarrassment!  What a smudge on my shining record of doing things well.

When it came time to blog the news of the roofed buffet, undue attention had to be paid to getting the most handsome photo angle of the inebriated structure.  I felt like family covering for an addicted member.

After:  roof line more level, verticals now vertical.  Plumb post.

At some point we give up (slump into despair and depression) or we get over it (as in conquer with a great, easy solution).  That's how "set the (chicken) world straight" flew to the top of Things I get to do today.  With a fistful of cedar shims* (leftover from the roofing project), a good, sound hammer and a couple dozen well-aimed blows,  the chicken buffet found some self respect and straighten up, pleased to be used and proud to be seen.

*Simple solution:  shims driven into the ground.

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